A journalist once asked James Baldwin if being poor, black, and gay had made him feel disadvantaged as a young writer. “No,” Baldwin replied, “I thought I had hit the jackpot. It was so outrageous, you had to find a way to use it.” In this two-man show, real-life intimate partners Ricardo Gamboa and Sean James William Parris explore how they came to understand and harness their queerness as gay Black and Brown boys growing up in marginalized communities where there were no models for it and no promise that it gets better.
SPACE AGE: two boys, one bathtub and explosive, highly physical re-performances of pop cultural influences and scenes of communion between two lovers combine to celebrate queer imagination and intimacy in this play about really gay shit like resilience, love, and hope.
About the artists:
Ricardo Gamboa is an artist, activist and academic working in his native Chicago and New York City. In Chicago, Gamboa was Founder and Artistic Director of Teatro Americano, Company Member of Barrel of Monkeys, and worked with the city’s most notable directors. He was recipient of a MacArthur Foundation International Connections Award with Teatro Americano and of a City of Chicago CAAP grant. Still working in Chicago, Gamboa is the founding director of the controversial and audience and critically acclaimed radical youth ensemble The YoungFugitives, an Artist-in-Residence at Free Street Theater, cultural commentator for local radio stations, and director and performer with the Latino political comedic ensemble Southside Ignoramus Quartet (SIQ). His first feature film, Maydays, premiered this past year at the Chicago Latino Film Festival to sold-out audiences. His play, The Real LIfe Adventures of Jimmy de las Rosas, was winner of the Latino ImPACT Playwriting Award and premiered in Summer 2015, touring Chicago and drawing over 300 audience members to a single performance in some instances.
In New York City, he was a fellow with the Hemispheric Institute of Performance & Politics EmergeNYC program, launched his Border Jump-Off Short Film Series, is a Company Member of the award-winning New York Neo-Futurists, and performs at a range of independent and institutional venues. He received his M.A. Arts Politics from New York University (NYU) Tisch School of the Arts where he continues to develop performance and media work with the guidance of Karen Finley. He is recipient of several acting, directing, playwriting, and filmmaking awards. He is currently pursuing his doctorate degree in American Studies at the NYU’s Department of Social and Cultural Analysis studying arts activism in Chicago. He has worked with over 5,000 young people in the United States and Latin America.
Sean Parris was born in L.A., raised in Miami and Georgia, with parents from Barbados and a stepfather from Ohio. He currently lives in Chicago, in Pilsen, with boyfriend and SPAGE AGE co-creator Ricardo Gamboa. This is his first original production to get a world premiere. Sean received his MFA from Depaul University’s Theatre School, is a graduate of Black Box Acting Academy, and artist-in- residence at Free Street Theater, and staff writer for the podcast PleasureTown in Chicago.
He was recently seen in Steppenwolf’s Compass and additional Chicago credits include: The Solid Sand Below (Goodman Theatre); The Drunken City, Animal Farm, Compass (Steppenwolf ); The Whipping Man (Northlight Theatre); Seascape (Remy Bumppo); Pornography (Steep Theatre); A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Shakespeare’s Greatest Hits (Chicago Shakespeare Theatre); A Girl With Sun in Her Eyes (Pinebox Theatre). He will next be seen in the OpenTV’s original web series BRUJOS. He is represented by Paonessa Talent Agency. Love to my Mom, Ricardo Gamboa and our collaborators, family, friends; and the ladies of Paonessa Talent.
Where: Free Street Theater, 1419 W. Blackhawk St., 3 rd Floor
When: July 11 th , 18 th , 25 th , and August 1 st at 7:00pm
How much: As always, tickets are Pay-What- You-Can!
For more information visit http://www.freestreet.org