Few could have guessed when Deferred Action by David Lozano
and Lee Trull first opened last year to respectful acclaim at the Dallas Theater Center,
in association with Cara Mia Theater, that it now would be a premier play of the hour, produced at SMU’s Ignite/Arts Dallas, the University of North Texas,
and the Latino Cultural Center as well as in Houston and Los Angeles, with interest bubbling up in El Paso and Santa Fe and from as far afield as Providence, Rhode Island.
That’s because Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, inaugurated
by President Obama to permit kids brought to the U.S. by their parents to remain in the country
for another two years, subject to renewal, and grant them the right to work with no fear of deportation, is about to expire.
Only Congress can prevent 800,000 one-time kids, now quite grown up and established in careers,
being sent to countries they have never known in March (or maybe a few months later, depending on the whim of the White House).
This issue was hardly in the air when David Lozano, Executive Artistic Director of Cara Mia, approached DTC’s Kevin Moriarty about doing something together.
Lee Trull, then Director of New Play Development at DTC, was assigned the project, which changed continually,
over the many months they wrote it as circumstance shifted along with theatrical emphasis.
This was an issue play, but it still required characters, plot,
and cohesion. Though deep into the politics of 2016 by the time their work appeared onstage,
neither Trull nor Lozano saw coming the outcome of that astonishing election even though
they inserted into their drama a right-wing candidate for president with a startling
This pair of playwrights made an especially effective combination for Deferred Action.
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