An Evening of Spoken Word and Cello | Los Angeles Public Library
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An Evening of Spoken Word and Cello

Monday, December 8, 2008
Episode Summary
Selected readings from Marisela Norte's debut collection of poetry, Peeping Tom Tom Girl, performed by long time friends and collaborators Norte y Gaitan.

Participant(s) Bio
Marisela Norte has contributed to many publications including Rolling Stone, Interview, Elle, LA Weekly, Buzz, WEST, the Los Angeles Times Sunday Magazine, Chicana Art, BOMB, Tu Ciudad and the upcoming issue of Propagandist. She has performed her work throughout California and many cities in the United States, and most recently at the Tate Modern in London. Norte has also co-authored the play, Black Butterfly, Jaquar Girl, Pinanta Woman and Other Super Hero Girls Like Me, and performed it at 350 Middle and High Schools in Los Angeles the last few years. Marisela Norte has been honored at the Kennedy Center in DC and nominated for an Ovation award. Her work can also be found in a number of anthologies, among them Microphone Fiends, Bordered Sexualities: Bodies on the Verge of a Nation, The Geography of Home: California's Poetry of Place, Rara Avis, and Chicana Art-The Politics of Spiritual and Aesthetic Altarities by Laura Perez.

María Elena Gaitán is a fourth generation musician, a performance artist and like her friend of many years, Marisela Norte, she is also a native of East Los Angeles. Gaitán's first performance art piece, "La Condición Femenina", was created and performed with Norte in the early 80's as part of the Asco conceptual art group's performances. Gaitán has brought performance to a wide range of venues throughout the United States and in Portugal, including performances of Igor Stravinsky's "The Soldier's Tale," directed by Peter Sellars with the Los Angeles Philharmonic under the baton of Esa-Pekka Salonen. Her artistic collaborative works have been featured by "Meet The Composer" and "Arts International." She is the first Latino artist ever invited to participate in the Ford Foundation's Africa Exchange Project and has developed artistic works about the African Diaspora in Mexico for over a decade. Her solo works have focused on social justice satire and women's health including: "Chola Con Cello: A Home Girl In The Philharmonic," "The Adventures of Connie Chancla," and "<¡The Teta Show!>" often performed for standing-room only audiences. She is the first U.S. artist to receive the Gateways Bi-national Ford/Rockefeller Residency Award and has been a Lead Artist for the Ford Foundation's Animating Democracy Initiative. Gaitán was a recipient of the Anonymous Was A Woman Foundation Award in 2003.