History of the Body

Media Kit


A play by Aimee Suzara
Staged reading directed by Desdemona Chiang

Bindlestiff Studio presents the staged reading of Aimee Suzara's A HISTORY OF THE BODY, an artist-in-residency culminating in two public performances Saturday, February 15, 2014, at 3:00 PM, and Sunday, February 16, 2014, at 5:00 PM. Desdemona Chiang directs. Talkback after each performance with the playwright, the director, choreographer Frances Sedayao, Bindlestiff Studio Artistic Director Alan S. Quismorio, and cast.

A HISTORY OF THE BODY is a multidisciplinary piece fusing dance, theater, poetry and visual art to explore the impacts of colonization and the media on the body. In its story of two womenformer friends with divergent ambitions and body politics - the work examines the modern-day attitudes towards lighter skin tone for Filipina women and women of color, the global rise in cosmetic whitening product use, as well as the historical events and stereotypes perpetuated at the turn of the century: specifically the portrayal of Filipinos as "dark" savages during the display of Filipinos at the 1904 St. Louis World's Fair.

The February staged reading will be the first public presentation of A HISTORY OF THE BODY as a full evening-length script and represent the culmination of Suzara's artist in residency at Bindlestiff Studio.

Funding for the artist-in-residency performances is made possible through a grant from the Zellerbach Family Foundation. The performance have also been made possible in part through a gift by Yerba Buena Center for the Arts through the YBCAway program.

Press Release:
Download the Press Release (PDF)


On A HISTORY OF THE BODY - The Trailer 2013-2014 from aimee suzara on Vimeo.

Photos for Web:
Gallery | Photo 1 | Photo 2 | Photo 3 | Photo 4

Still Photographs by Namu Williams.

"This show is a sweet "call" to us – immigrants and indigenous and African Americans, to understand how oppression, marketing, racism and dominance work and affect us. What have I done under this disturbed reality – did I change myself to fit in?" - Isaura Oliveira, Dance Instructor

"HOTB provokes many compelling questions and thoughts about Pinays, beauty, skin, body and perception in the context of American immigrant experience and the history of colonialism and imperialism." - Christine Cordero

"…it can shift our self-perceptions as Filipinos." – anonymous audience member

"Such a powerful show that not only demonstrates the history of the body but the epistemology of the Pinay." / "Amazing. Brings the body, empire, empire, internalized oppression, colonial mentality, capitalism, white supremacy, etc. I felt like the show embodied parts of my childhood and instances in my life that I struggle with today." – Jocyl Sacramento

"…to be proud of diversity." / "Hits home on how ethnicity is perceived in our society." – Oscar Ramos

"Beautiful take on a recurring and important theme. Integration of the political and the personal." – Lillian Galedo

"Awesome, moving, informative and eye-opening." / "Colors are not just black and white." "Brown also has different shades." "Women are truly the key." "A must-see." "Listen to the voices." – Jared Jesuitas

"A History of the Body is an important work when looking at the effects of colonization. The effects of dominant, mainstream culture have such an immense influence on women, especially young women grappling with their identity. While typified beauty is a construction, History of the Body helps dismantle these constructions and forces the viewer to ask difficult questions. Crucial and imperative work that should be seen and experienced by all." – Dorothy Santos

"This show is important because it brings to light many issues being ignored by more mainstream artistic expression." – James Simmons

"Entertaining theater with great use of photos, music, dance and dialogue." – Rick Sterling

"Impactful and well-written and acted!" – Chrissy Anderson-Zavala

When: Feb 15 at 3pm and Feb 16 at 5pm
Location: Bindlestiff Studio 185 6th St. San Francisco, CA
Tickets: $5 - $10 sliding scale; Purchase Tickets