This Sunday I will be leaving to Cuba! Excited does not give justice to my feelings of going to Cuba. The last time I was there was almost ten years ago with one of the most amazing projects I have ever been a part of, THE SOL PROJECT.
The Sol Project was the first ever cultural exchange with kids from the USA and Cuba since the embargo began. We brought twelve American kids ages 8-13 to live and work with twelve Cuban kids for a month. During this month the kids wrote and performed an original full length play that was presented to over 1,500 Cubans at the National Theater. Along with the kids each country had ten mentors, ages 20-25, that created, directed and ran the Sol Project. At the age of twenty one I was one of these mentors. To try and describe what I experienced during that month is impossible because it was simply too great, too amazing, too inspiring…it was life altering.
I truly believe the only reason I am was able to direct Entre Nos is because of what I experienced and created in Cuba during Sol Project. One of my most vivid memories is when the play began. I was sitting in the audience and I was a nervous wreck. I couldn’t stop moving my legs. I kept looking around the audience amazed that one thousand five hundred people had come to see our work. The lights came down in the audience and I held my breath. Lights up on stage and the magic began. The kids were phenomenal!!!! My eyes were filled with tears of joy and pride…and then I had the simplest but most empowering thought….I said to myself “If I was able direct and create this play I can direct & create anything.” And just like that, a thousand doors opened up in my mind, just like that any fear and insecurities I had disappeared…and just like that I started the journey that would eventually lead me to Entre Nos.
So ten years later I am going back to Havana…back to the national theater…back to where it all began.
Hasta la victoria siempre…