eSe Teatro announces:


eSe Teatro’s Artistic Director Rose Cano, will travel to Peru with Valerie-Curtis Newton as guest lecturers at the 1st annual Afro- Peruvian Theatre Festival, Festival Zafra organized by Teatro Del Milenio of Peru.  Held November 1 -4 in Lima, Peru.


“Honoring the historical legacy and cultural ties between Latino and American America peoples.”


Rose Cano, artistic director of eSe Teatro has been invited to present the history of The AFrican ConeXion Project in Seattle, uniting Latino and African American communities through music, dance and theatre performances since 2001.  Also presenting is Valerie Curtis-Newton, Head of Performance, Acting and Directing at UW School of Drama and the Artistic Director of The Hansberry Project. Valerie will be presenting a current overview of African American theatre, both regionally and nationally.



Festival Zafra is the first festival in the history of Peru to honor Afro-Peruvian contributions to the field of theatre. The event commemorates 60 years since the first Afro-Peruvian theatrical performance was held at a major theater in Peru’s capital, Lima. Performances, readings and lectures will explore the work and themes discussed by Afro-descendant theatre groups, playwrights, directors and performers in Peru and worldwide. Issues of casting and representation will also be addressed.  Staged readings include Fences (La Cerca) by August Wilson.



The AFrican ConeXion Project (founded by Rose Cano) has been bringing Afro-Latino artists from Latin America since 2001 to collaborate on bilingual musicals based on traditional cultures and stories.  In 2001, four artists arrived from La Habana, Cuba to collaborate on an original bilingual musical with Rainier Valley Youth Theatre entitled, Mabaire! Don’t Forget Me., music by Paul Thomas and Edesio Alejandro, book and lyrics by Rose Cano.  From 2007 – 2009, The AFrican ConeXion Project hosted Teatro Del Milenio to create another original musical entitled Callejon (The Alley), choreography by artistic director Luis Sandoval, music by Paul Thomas and Roberto Arguedas, book and bilingual lyrics by Rose Cano.


Founded in 2010, eSe Teatro’s mission is to empower local Latino artists to create, produce and promote professional theater in English, Spanish, bilingual and Spanglish. eSe Teatro honors self-definition and inclusion, striving to represent all the colors in the “rainbow of brown,” and to provide a voice for Latino artists as well as Latino communities by sharing culturally and socially relevant stories through innovative programming, workshops, and initiatives. Affiliated artists range from immigrants to U.S. born, Spanish-speaking and non Spanish-speaking, representing cultures and heritages from all over The Americas and the Caribbean. Learn more at


Rose Cano, a graduate of Cornish, is co-founder and Artistic Director of eSe Teatro: Seattle Latinos Take Stage since 2010. She is a bilingual actor, playwright, director and lyricist. Her plays Don Quixote & Sancho Panza, Homeless in Seattle and Bernie’s Apt. produced in partnership at ACT Theatre.



Currently the Head of Performance – Acting and Directing at the University of Washington School of Drama, I also serve as the Founding Artistic Director for The Hansberry Project, a professional African American theatre lab. I have worked with theatre’s across the country including: Actors’ Theatre of Louisville, Alabama Shakespeare Festival, Intiman Theatre, Seattle Children’s Theatre, The Mark Taper Forum, New York Theatre Workshop, Tacoma Actors’ Guild, Southern Repertory Theatre, Capitol Repertory Theatre among others.



2014: Stranger Genius Awards in Performance and the Crosscut Courage Award for Culture.

2001: Stage Directors and Choreographers Foundation’s (SDCF) Gielgud Directing Fellowship

1997-1999: NEATCG Career Development Fellowship  for Directors


Composer, accomplished pianist gospel choir director and Seattle Public Schools teacher Paul Thomas was the principal composer for The AFrican ConeXion Project since its inception.  He collaborated tirelessly and enthusiastically with visiting Latino artists using the language of music.  In 2014 he travelled with Rose Cano to Lima, Peru to teach a bilingual gospel workshop and  direct a musical concert of Callejon with Teatro Del Milenio.  He shared his music, faith and culture with students and teachers in Lima, Peru and truly represented the spirit of cultural exchange.  He is sorely missed.


eSe Teatro invited to participate in Festival Zafra in Lima, Peru