UPDATE: The premiere of Mercedes (work-in-progress) will take place on YouTube on Friday, Feb 5, and will be available for on-demand viewing for a limited time.
Mercedes (work-in-progress) is a multidisciplinary work inspired by Modesto "Flako" Jimenez’s mother Margarita and grandmother Mercedes, and the legacy of Latinx individuals she helped migrate to the country. After immigrating to America as a kid, Flako was raised by his grandmother in Brooklyn. Now as an adult, he serves as her main caregiver as she battles dementia. In the process of taking care of his “mama," he uncovered years of letters, receipts, and papers that documented her impact on the Latinx community.
For years, she helped individuals immigrate to the US and gain their footing in the city. Her impact was far larger than he ever knew, and yet, today very little of that sacrifice is acknowledged. Then in 2019 his Mother Margarita came from the Dominican Republic and worlds collided. Mercedes is a new multidisciplinary theatrical work in which we explore our relationship to the matriarchy and our ancestors, familial bonds and inherited trauma, and how our own identity can impact our mental health.
Creator/Artist: Flako Jimenez
Director: Brisa Areli Muñoz
Projection Designer: Victor Morales
Production Manager: Carol Almonte
Director of Photography: Skye Morse-Hodsgon
Assistant Director: Cricket Brown
Watch at Youtube.com/bricbrooklyn
ABOUT THE ARTISTS:
Modesto Flako Jimenez is a Bushwick-raised artist and educator. 2015 HOLA Best Ensemble Award Winner. ATI Best Actor Award Winner 2016. HOLA Outstanding Solo Performer 2017, 2016 Princess Grace Honorarium in Theater, and NY Times profiled. He has taught theater/poetry in NYC Public Schools for ten years. He has toured internationally and appeared on TEDxBushwick, EARLY SHAKER SPIRITUALS (Wooster Group), Richard Maxwell’s SAMARA (Soho Rep.), Kaneza Schaal’s JACK &. (BAM) and Victor Morales' ESPERENTO (Sundance). In 2018 he became the first Dominican-American Lead Artist in The Public Theater’s UTR Festival for ¡OYE! FOR MY DEAR BROOKLYN.
Brisa Areli Muñoz is a chicanx theatre director, educator, and cultural worker based out of Brooklyn, New York. She serves as the Artistic Director of Applied Theatre Collective, where she has facilitated work both nationally and internationally, including work with peacebuilding educators in Iraq, and international mediators in Romania. Brisa has directed and facilitated work for the NYC Department of Education, Actionplay, The Public Theater, New York City Center, The Civilians, Carnegie Hall, BRIC, Sojourn Theatre, CUNY Creative Arts Team, Hi-ARTS, Bethel Woods Center for the Arts, New York City Children’s Theater, Vital Theatre, and Atlantic Pacific Theatre. Most recently, Brisa served as Manager of Community Partnerships for the Public Works program at The Public Theater.
Skye Morse-Hodgson is a filmmaker, photographer, producer, and award winning screenwriter. Originally from Los Angeles, she moved to New York in 2015 after graduating from Brooks Institute with a BFA in filmmaking. She has been involved in the creation, management, and shooting of productions at 3LD Art and Technology Center, Sundance Film Festival, The Tank, Dixon Place, Here Art Center, Abrons Art Center, The Performing Garage, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Deitch Projects, and many others. Skye’s photography work has been featured in The New York Times and The New Yorker.
Victor Morales is a Multidisciplinary Artist whose work includes theater direction, video design, animation, text, sound design, and digital puppetry. He has collaborated with international artists such as Chris Kondek (Berlin), Joseph Silovsky (NYC), Jim Findlay (NYC), Wolfgang Mitterer (Austria) among others. Since 2003, Victor has been obsessed with the art of video game software tech and has implemented different game engines into most of the works he has produced. In 2019 his multidisciplinary project Esperpento was selected to be part of Sundance 2019 New Frontiers, also in 2019 the installation of Esperpento was awarded with “Best Immersive and Time Based Art” at the B3 Biennial awards at the Buchmesse in Frankfurt, Germany.
Carol Almonte is a Production and Stage Manager based in New York City. She has apprenticed and interned with the Production Management departments of the Actors Theatre of Louisville (2019-2020 season), Ars Nova (Summer 2018), and the Williamstown Theatre Festival (Summer 2017). She has also done freelance stage management, including two staged readings of Ole White Sugah Daddy by Obehi Janice produced by AYE DEFY.
cricket brown (she/they) is a creator, performer, collaborator, celebrator, rule breaking fool based in brooklyn, nyc. they are grateful to be part of the MMD team and for Flako’s ongoing, authentic mentorship. cricket is currently dreaming of curating an interactive music + dance performance experience on a lit baseball field in McCarren park, featuring artist friends and curious passerby’s. she has performed at the Park Avenue Armory and has interned with The Bushwick Starr, Half Straddle and Oye Group.
The program's four tracks are Contemporary Art, Film + TV, Performing Arts, and Video Art. Each track offers unique resources designed to meet the needs of varied artistic practices. Residents receive additional financial support, mentorship, skills-based learning opportunities, and documentation of their work. In-progress public programs (virtual and later live) will take place from September 2020 through June of 2021.