Virginia Grise with Quetzal
Past event


From sharp shooters to earthmovers, roaming dogs, helicopters in the sky, quarantines and men that fly, musical director Martha Gonzalez and writer Virginia Grise chronicle the process of adapting Helena María Viramontes’ epic novel Their Dogs Came with Them in a medium security women’s prison and the site-specific staging of the play under the I-19 Freeway with a community cast of scholars, organizers and actors. Directed by Kendra Ware, this performance lecture includes live music by members of the band Quetzal, giving audiences a sneak peek into their most recent project together, a concept album, Riding the Currents of the Wilding Wind.

Virginia Grise is the 2022 recipient of The Herb Alpert Award in the Arts in Theatre.

Riding the Currents of the Wilding Wind is a National Performance Network (NPN) Creation Fund Project co-commissioned by Pregones/Puerto Rican Traveling Theater, Movimiento de Arte y Cultura Latino Americana, Center for Imagination in the Borderlands at Arizona State University, Cornell University’s Department of English and Critical Race Theory Series, Las Maestras Center for Xicana[x] Indigenous Thought, Art and Social Practice at UC Santa Barbara, the Alliance for California Traditional Arts and NPN with support from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, Ford Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation’s National Playwright Residency Program administered in partnership with HowlRound Theatre Commons.

This performance lecture, developed in residence at Texas Performing Arts at the University of Texas at Austin and The Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center at the University of Maryland, is a project of a todo dar productions and has been made possible in part, through the sponsorship of Pregones/Puerto Rican Traveling Theater, with funding by the New England Foundation for the Arts’ National Theater Project, with lead funding from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and additional support from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation. 

about the artists

Virginia Grise

Virginia Grise is a recipient of the Alpert Award in the Arts, Yale Drama Award, Whiting Writers’ Award, Princess Grace Award in Theatre Directing, and the Playwrights’ Center’s Jerome Fellowship. Her published work includes Your Healing is Killing Me (Plays Inverse Press), blu (Yale University Press), The Panza Monologues co-written with Irma Mayorga (University of Texas Press) and an edited volume of Zapatista communiqués titled Conversations with Don Durito (Autonomedia Press). She is a founding member of a todo dar productions, an alum of the Soho Rep Writer/Director Lab, the Women’s Project Theatre Lab & the NALAC Leadership Institute. In addition to plays, she has created a body of work that is interdisciplinary and includes multimedia performance, dance theater, performance installations, guerilla theater, site specific interventions, and community gatherings. Virginia has taught writing for performance at the university level, as a public school teacher, in community centers, women’s prisons and in the juvenile correction system. She holds an MFA in Writing for Performance from the California Institute of the Arts and is the Mellon Foundation Playwright in Residence at Cara Mia Theatre and a Hodder Fellow at Princeton University. 



Quetzal is a Grammy-Award winning band rooted in the complex cultural currents of life in the barrio, its social activism, its strong feminist stance, and its rock and roll musical beginnings. As a prominent force in the East L.A. creative culturescape, Quetzal vividly portrays how music, culture, and sociopolitical ideology come together in a specific place. Tonight, we are joined by members of Quetzal including Martha Gonzalez, Tylana Enomoto on violin, Juan Perez on bass and guest musician, legendary guitarist, Bob Robles.

cast & crew

Written by Martha Gonzalez and Virginia Grise

Directed by Kendra Ware

Set Design by Tanya Orellana

Video Design by Yee Eun Nam

Music by members of Quetzal, including Martha Gonzalez, Tylana Enomoto, Juan Perez

Guest Musician: Bob Robles

Prop Artisan: Briittany White

Video Assistant: Yuki Izumihara