Season Archives > 2006 - 2007 Season > The Labyrinth of Desire

The Department of Theatre and Dance at the University of California, San Diego is pleased to present Lope De Vega’s The Labyrinth of Desire in a new adaptation by Caridad Svich commissioned by UCSD Department of Theatre and Dance. MFA directing student Gerardo J. Ruiz leads a company of actors, designers, and stage managers drawn from the nationally acclaimed UCSD Graduate Theatre Training Program.

Lope de Vega, born in Madrid (1562), was the first Spanish dramatist to make a living as a playwright. Of the over 2200 plays he wrote, 500 have survived.  Despite his literary productivity, he found time for his many love affairs that produced a large number of offspring and brought him both notoriety and confrontations with the law, resulting in prison terms and exile.  Nevertheless, in 1614, Vega became a priest, while continuing to write secular plays, and carrying on his affairs -- most notably with the wild actress Lucia de Salcedo and a young married woman named Doña Marta. In 1632, Lope lost Doña Marta. Three years later, his son Lopito was lost at sea, and his illegitimate daughter eloped with a courtier. These losses weighed heavily on the playwright priest who consequently died at the age of seventy-three. Most of his plays, as in The Labyrinth of Desire, revolve around the conflicting claims of love and honor. Included in his most popular works are:  The Sheep Well, The Foolish Lady, Finding Truth Through Doubt, The Knight from Olmeda, and Punishment without Revenge.

Caridad Svich, a recipient of a Harvard University Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study Bunting fellowship and a TCG/Pew National Theatre Artist Grant, has twice been short-listed for the PEN USA-West Award in Drama. Her new play with alt-country songs Thrush premieres at Salvage Vanguard Theatre in Austin this season.  Her US adaptation of the contemporary Serbian drama Huddersfield premiered in Chicago recently as a TUTA production at Victory Gardens Theatre. Other recent works include: Iphigenia…a rave fable at 7 Stages in Atlanta; her multimedia collaboration (with Todd Cerveris and Nick Philipppou) The Booth Variations at 59 East 59th Street Theatre/NY and Edinburgh Fringe Festival; and her version of Lorca's The House of Bernarda Alba at the Pearl Theatre/NY. Other key works include: Alchemy of Desire/Dead-Man's Blues, Fugitive Pieces, Any Place But Here, and Twelve Ophelias (a play with broken songs). She is founder of NoPassport, contributing editor of TheatreForum, and on the editorial board of Contemporary Theatre Review (Routledge/UK). As a translator, she is a specialist in the dramatic works of Federico Garcia Lorca and has also translated plays by Calderon de la Barca and Julio Cortazar. Some of her translations are collected in Federico Garcia Lorca: Impossible Theater (Smith & Kraus). She is currently developing a music-theatre adaptation of Lorca's Yerma with composer Elizabeth Swados and director Kay Matschullat. She holds an MFA from UCSD. She has been selected for inclusion in the Oxford Encyclopedia of Latino History.

Director Gerardo J. Ruiz is a third-year MFA student at UCSD, where he’s directed Election Day (Baldwin New Play Festival 2006), Blood Wedding, Citizens of Rome (Baldwin New Play Festival 2005); and Assistant Directed La Dispute and A Streetcar Named Desire.  His New York City credits include: Luces de Bohemia (Repertorio Espanol); new plays, Translation of Signs (HERE) and The Gospel According to St. Thomas (Trilogy Theatre). Regional credits: Murder of Crows and 4h Club. In 2003, Jerry was awarded the Van Lier Directing Fellowship. In 2002, he was selected for the Lincoln Center Directors’ Lab. From 2002-2004, he was a Resident Assistant Director on Baz Luhrmann's B'way production of La Boheme.

The Labyrinth of Desire features the talented actors of the UCSD Graduate Theatre Training Program, including Michelle Diaz, Amy Ellenberger, Molly Fite, Larry Herron, Brian Hostenske, EduardoPlacer, Brandon D. Taylor, and Peter Wylie. The Love of the Nightingalealso showcases the creative work of the UCSD Graduate Theatre Training Program design and management students, including: Scenic Designer Nikki Black; Costume Designer Emily DeAngelis ; Lighting Designer Christian DeAngelis; Sound Designer Christopher M. Luessmann; and Production Stage Manager Courtney Ames. 


Full Cast

Michelle Diaz
Amy Ellenberger
Molly Fite
Larry Herron
Brian Hostenske
Eduardo Placer
Brandon D. Taylor
Peter Wylie

Creative Team

Director: Gerardo J. Ruiz
Scenic Designer: Nikki Black
Lighting Designer: Emily DeAngelis
Costume Designer: Christian DeAngelis
Sound Designer: Christopher M. Luessmann
Production Stage Manager: Courtney Ames


Production Photos (taken by Manuel Rotenberg)



Tickets can be purchased at the door (if available) or in advance by calling the Box Office at 858.534.4574, M–F Noon to 6pm.

General Admission $15

UCSD Affiliate/Senior (over 62) $12

Student/UCSD Alumni Association (with ID) $10  



Thursday, November 16th, 7 pm reduced-price preview ($10/$8/$6)
Friday, November 17th, 8 pm opens
Saturday, November 18th, 2 pm matinee
Saturday, November 18th, 8 pm

Tuesday, November 21st, 8 pm
Saturday, November 25th, 2 pm matinee
Saturday, November 25th, 8 pm closes



Sheila and Hughes Potiker Theatre, UCSD Theatre District
Map: /places/parking.html



Week-night parking on campus is $3.00 (including Friday).  A parking pass may be purchased from the attendant on duty in front of the UCSD Theatre District/La Jolla Playhouse one hour before show time. No parking pass is required on Saturday and Sunday.


For more information about the UCSD Department of Theatre and Dance, please visit our website: http://theatre.ucsd.edu



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University of California San Diego - Dept of Theatre & Dance 9500 Gilman Drive MC0344 La Jolla, CA 92093 Tel: (858) 534-3791
email: theatreweb@ucsd.edu