New York, NY – Joanne is a freelance writer, theatre director, translator, has produced many Latin American plays and concerts in New York and is the winner of two Obie Awards. In 1967 she founded TOLA (Theatre of Latin America, Inc.), a New York-based nonprofit arts organization that pioneered artistic exchange between the US and Latin America. During 15 years as TOLA’s artistic director, Joanne traveled frequently to Latin America to develop arts exchange programs and build a Latin American theatre library of more than 3,000 volumes. In 2002 the TOLA Collection was acquired by the Lincoln Center Library for the Performing Arts. In 1979 TOLA produced the first Theatre in the Americas Festival at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., La Mama in New York, and the O’Neill Theater Center in Connecticut. The award-winning festival brought together 200 theatre people from Latin America, the U.S. and Canada. She has directed plays in New York, Los Angeles, Tucson, and Santiago de Chile; she has translated Latin American plays and screenplays into English for production, publication, and distribution; she has written widely on aspects of Latin American theatre and art. Her writing credits include her plays Paper Wings about Frida Kahlo and Kate’s Place; her book, Hispanic Theatre in the United States and Puerto Rico published by the Ford Foundation; her English translation of Book of the Ocean, a book of verse by Enrique Juncosa published by Dador Press in Málaga; her English translation of the screenplay El Topo by Alejandro Jodorowsky published by Douglas Books in New York. Her articles have appeared in the New York Times, TDR, American Theatre, Performing Arts Journal, Yale University’s Theater magazine, and Review. Her most recent articles include “Augusto Boal (1931-2009),” commissioned and published by Theater in 2010, three articles commissioned and published by the Edinburgh International Festival, “A Serious Man of the Theatre,” “Forgetting Filled with Memory,” and “Infinite Shades of Grey,” in 2010, 2012 and 2013, respectively. An updated version of “Forgetting Filled with Memory” was also published by Theater in February 2013.
In addition to her producing and writing awards, Joanne has received two senior Fulbrights to Chile (one to direct Terrence McNally’s Frankie and Johnny in the Claire de Lune; the other to begin researching her book, Symbols of Resistance: The Legacy of Artists under Pinochet, about the influence of artists on the political process) and two NEA translation grants, to translate into English Mario Vargas Llosa’s play, Kathie and the Hippopotamus, and José Triana’s play Common Words. Her translation of Triana’s play will be published in December 2013 by The Mercurian: A Theatrical Translation Review. In 2004 she was awarded a four-week writing residency by the Rockefeller Foundation to work on Symbols of Resistance in Bellagio, Italy. Since that time she has also received support for that project from the Ford Foundation and the Open Society Institute. In 2001 she received an award from the Permanent Representative of Chile to the United Nations “acknowledging and in appreciation of contributions toward restoring in Chile.” She has taught courses on Latin American theater at Yale’s School of Drama, NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, and playwriting at Ohio University’s School of Theater. In 2013 she was in residence at Brown University (on a Fitt Artist-in-Residence Grant) and at VCCA to work on her book, Symbols of Resistance, and to develop a theatre piece based on the book. In 2014 she was in residence at the MacDowell Colony and again at VCCA to continue working on those projects.