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Sofia Ubilla '21

ARS Nova participant Sofia Ubilla.

Major: Theatre: Directing and Spanish Studies

Bio: Sofia Ubilla is a senior double majoring in Theatre with a Directing Concentration and Spanish Studies originally from Miami, FL. She is extremely passionate about uncovering just what her Latine background means for her identity as an artist, and to find different ways to tell Latines and Spanish-language stories for English-speaking audiences.

Mentor: Dr. Carey Kasten
Abstract: This project dives deep into existing methods of translation and production of Spanish-language theatre for English-speaking audiences, with a focus on the specific challenges of the Golden Age comedia from Spain’s 16th and 17th centuries. I focused on Valor, agravio y mujer by Ana Caro, one of the only working female playwrights of the time, to produce a virtual translation and staging of the work. Focusing mainly on the work outlined in Kathleen Jeff’s Staging the Golden Age, I developed a method of collaborative rehearsal and translation that uncovered the original story, reproduced the effect it had on us, and engaged with meanings of the text in the present moment. We chose different methods to explore a virtual 21st century retelling of this story lost to time. We expanded one of the characters, Ribete, to become a framing device and narrator for the audience by adding some interjections and text in between scenes. We played with different combinations of Zoom boxes and placed this metatheatrical narrator in front of the boxes in order to emphasize the frame. We used underscoring to bring out moments of verse, specific costume elements to nod to the ridiculousness of the Baroque period, and shadow puppets in moments of intense physicality to help aid the translation come to life. Studying the nature of translation through performance uncovered a need for an expanded notion of what it means to translate.