Charles Darwin, Her True Story

It's January 1, 2001 in southern Chile. A wealthy sponsor of Latin American revolutions appears shipwrecked on a shrinking patch of thin ice along with a ghost, a gun, a knife and a secret admirer.

Wisdom from sketchy relations with Frida Kahlo, Fidel Castro, and others guide the castaways to an escape route, yet the ghost helps only one to survive.

The play - a celebration of  the revolutionary potential in everyone - shows how survival skills can ultimately backfire if unexplored or overused, and can delude one’s sense of self.

Charles Darwin, Her True Story was one of four plays selected via a national search by North Star for their 2020 New Plays Workshop Intensive, the Playwrights Center for their first Open Play Showcase actors’ reading, and by the Dramatists Guild for their Footlights actors’ reading series. 

Dramatic readings have included the following lead actors: Sarah Nina Hayon (Wintertime, Berkeley Rep), Sean San Jose (Artistic Director, Magic Theatre), Elena Ruggiero (Berkeley PlayCafe), Juan Amador (CampoSanto), Alisha Espinosa (NorthStar), and Joel Oramas (NorthStar).

Charles: Independent, driven and vengeful Latina (f/29-80). Salvador: Loyal, attentive and just Latino (m/43-65). Mara*: Ghost of Charles’ wise sister (f/18). Pablo: Loving, sage, Chilean poet/politician (m/45). Frida: Honest, sharp, dying Mexican artist (f/47). Fidel: Devoted, astute, Cuban Prime Minister (m/36). Nora: Moral, alert, Nicaraguan fighter (f/28). Marcos: Just, mindful, Mexican battle commander (m/41). Soldier*: Mexican army soldier. Voice-Over: Radio voices of a ship’s captain and US President Kennedy. Double Plans: Two Actors - Salvador as Pablo, Frida, Fidel, Nora, Marcos, Soldier and Voice-Over. Three Actors - Salvador as Pablo, Fidel, and Marcos. Mara as Frida, Nora, Soldier and Voice-Over. *Mara and/or Soldier can be cast or imagined; both are nonspeaking. All characters are Latinx.
J. Lynn Jackson