What happens when people refuse to change, will not accept technological advances, and do not know how to cope in a world that has passed them by? Since this is a story of multiple passions gone stale, a fiery despair should be projected by the characters in this award-winning tale set in a Cuban community in Tampa, Florida in The action of the play revolves around a central figure known as the lector. In the industry of handmade cigars, there was tradition, from the late 19 th century up to the Great Depression, of hiring a learned person to read newspapers, poetry, and great works of fiction to the mostly illiterate Cuban and Puerto Rican workers as they performed their monotonous tasks in the hot and humid conditions necessary to keep the tobacco leaves moist and supple. Anna in the Tropics opens with Ofelia, the wife of Santiago, the factory owner, eagerly waiting with her daughters Marela and Conchita for a ship bringing Juan Julian, the new lector she has hired.

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By Nilo Cruz. Nilo Cruz wrote the play to be premiered at New Theatre during this season The romantic drama deals with a family of cigar makers whose loves and lives are played out against the backdrop of America in the midst of the Depression.

Alton Jones award and a Kennedy Nominated as finalists in Drama in :. Paul Pioneer Press. An honest, original work that invites audiences to examine diverse perceptions of privilege and human connection through two pairs of mismatched individuals: a former trucker and his recently paralyzed ex-wife, and an arrogant young man with cerebral palsy and his new caregiver. For a nuanced yet powerful drama that reminds audiences of the stacked deck still facing workers searching for the American dream.

For its clear, concise and comprehensive stories that illuminated the roots, significance and impact of corporate scandals in America. Moved by the jury from the Public Service category.

For his memorable portrayal of how undocumented Central American youths, often facing deadly danger, travel north to the United States.

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Finalists Nominated as finalists in Drama in :. Take Me Out , by Richard Greenberg. The Goat or Who is Sylvia? The Jury. Linda Winer chair drama critic , Newsday.

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Anna in the Tropics

Nilo Cruz's subtly spiced period drama is not suited to Broadway. The play's emotional dynamics would be better served by an embracing, intimate space. And yet the venue alone is not to blame for the play's mild impact, more sleepy than steamy. The creamy texture of Cruz's writing tends to curdle in Emily Mann's coarse-grained production. By Charles Isherwood. Win a Pulitzer Prize, go directly to Broadway. Related Stories.


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Join StageAgent today and unlock amazing theatre resources and opportunities. Research Playwrights, Librettists, Composers and Lyricists. Browse Theatre Writers. Here, a Cuban-American family eagerly awaits the arrival of their new lector, Juan Julian. In a cigar factory owned by the Patriarch of the family, Santiago, Juan Julian is hired to read to the family during their long days of rolling cigars by hand.

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