Nao Bustamante The Wooden People

Nao Bustamante: The Wooden People

World Premiere

“Bustamante has long made work that explores exposure and vulnerability.” KCET

Artist Nao Bustamante’s latest work, The Wooden People, layers ancient myths on the familiar melodrama of the telenovela while grappling with ideas of queer existence, love, and a connection to the cosmos. The work expands on a central theme of the Mayan origin story, which tells of pre-humans— “the wooden people”—who were eventually destroyed. The Wooden People is an episodic 360/VR film series being filmed at REDCAT. The theater takes on a metaphorical role in the central narrative. Bustamante brings together luminaries of the Los Angeles performance art world, featuring Ron Athey, Rafa Esparza, Marcus Kuiland-Nazario, Gabriela Ruiz, San Cha, and Dorian Wood, with a musical and sound score by Nick Hallett and costumes by OLIMA.

The Wooden People has been made possible by a grant from the Mike Kelley Foundation for the Arts. The Wooden People is a National Performance Network (NPN) Creation & Development Fund Project co-commissioned by Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater (REDCAT) in partnership with La MaMa and NPN/VAN. The Creation & Development Fund is supported by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts (a federal agency). For more information, visit


Associated Images: 

THU 12/16
8:30 pm
FRI 12/17
8:30 pm
SAT 12/18
8:30 pm

In keeping with current LA County Public Health requirements and Music Center policy, and for the safety and comfort of our community, all patrons and guests must provide proof of full vaccination. All patrons and guests must also wear a mask while at REDCAT except when eating or drinking. 

G - General Audience

M - REDCAT Members

ST - Students

CA - CalArts Students/Faculty/Staff