Thursday, April 14, 2011

Interview - Indio Melendez of "Indiosyncracy"

By Byrne Harrison

Actor and writer Indio Melendez was born and raised in New York City. He was the recipient of the “2008 H.O.L.A. Award” for ensemble cast in Dona Flor Y Sus Dos Marido, which enjoyed a healthy run at the Spanish Repertory Theater. Other notable performances include his portrayal of Miguel in The Vieques at the Spanish Repertory Theater, for which he was recognized with a “2001 Latin Ace Award” Nomination. More recently, his one may show, Manchild Dilemma, was also again recognized for excellence, earning Indio a “2007 Premios Sin Limites Award Nomination”. His play Indiosyncacy will be performed Friday, April 15th as part of the Downtown Urban Theater Festival.

You have a fascinating background - teacher, actor, writer, Gulf War veteran. How long have you been involved in theatre?

Yes, my background is diverse; I am very fortunate. I've been involved with the artistic community for over 15 years. I started acting professionally in 1996, in a play called The Tranny Chase.

Your current show, Indiosyncracy, is part of this year's Downtown Urban Theatre Festival. Tell me a little about it.

Indiosyncrasy is my autobiographical coming out story and my experiences as I tried to define who I am as a man, a father, and a son. Indiosyncrasy is about stereotypes, internalized homophobia, homophobia and heterosexism. And love and faith to ground you.

I'm intrigued by the fact that it incorporates Afro-Cuban song and dance, monologue, verse... a variety of different styles. What made you decide to work these different aspects into your show?

I wanted to tell my story but not in a linear way. Life isn't like that. Its a conglomerate of people and emotional journeys that one has to experience to hopefully find yourself. If you're strong and have positive people around to help guide you. That's the way I wanted to stage my show with the same idiosyncratic tosses and turns life throws at you.

How did you come up with the different characters in your show?

The characters in my show are people I know. My mother, who is homophobic and how she affected my coming out. Cinammon, the very effeminate family friend who I made fun of and ultimately saves me. And "Id" who made me do some of the craziest things ever.

What's next for you in 2011?

I'm currently in rehearsal for Carlos Serrano's new play at Repertorio Espanol titled No Better Friend, No Worse Enemy. I hope that Indiosyncrasy will have a life of its own. I believe there's a powerful message people sometimes have to be reminded of.

By Indio Melendez

Downtown Urban Theatre Festival
at MMAC Theater
248 West 60th Street

Friday, April 15, 8 PM

No comments:

Post a Comment