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Colonize(d): A Duet on Identity and Intersectionality

Created and performed by Issa Lopez and Siobhan O’Loughlin.

Issa is Filipina and Siobhan is American. Siobhan’s country colonized Issa’s in a brutal, violent war over 100 years ago, and there is currently rising tension over American occupation and dominance in the Philippines.

But they are still friends.
With support from the Network of Ensemble Theatres’ Travel Grant, two women come together from across an ocean, to create a piece that explores the relationship between our colonial histories and our bodies, our relationships to our ourselves, and to each other.
Issa was born in a prison during Filipino President Ferdinand Marcos’ Martial Law, and history has just been rewritten to declare Marcos a hero, thanks to current President Duterte. Meanwhile, millions of Americans fear the potential of Martial Law under President Elect Donald Trump, who not only owns business property in Manila, but whose irrational, unpredictable, and bigoted behavior has instigated a dramatic increase of hate crimes and violent acts across the country.
As our world leaders flagrantly expose their misogyny without any consequence, Issa and Siobhan expose their identities as queer, as survivors of assault, as activists and feminists in a time when “identity politics” are also under the gun.
Part autobiography, part ethnography, part realism, surrealism and absurdism, Colonize(d) is a performative confrontation of our past as well as a rally for our present, in order to connect for our endangered future.
To learn more about our collaborators and this project, please visit Manila-based Sipat Lawin Ensemble as well as our director Jk Anicoche.
Photos by J Laspuna Villanueva, Video by Brandon Relucio.
Cross-continental contributors who made this collaboration click: Billy Windsor, Sarah Salazaar, Christopher Aronson, Lynne Barbee, Brian Dooley, Shawn Jester, Regina, Eric Atienza, Ninez Jerbi, Jean Boggs, Mark Dobrow, Dominick DeGaetano, Kyla Bauer, Alicia Murphy, Bobby Harris, Brian Wene, Scott Intagliata, Angelique Magallona, Fiona Borres-DeLuca, Sarah Livengood Barker, Bruce Center, Athena M Lopez, Genevieve Bermejo, Stacey Pounsberry, Glenn Ricci, Renee Angelo, and Becca Lynch.