Monica Palacios is Breaking Boundaries

First Gay performer to perform at Loyola Marymount University speaks to Lisa Z

By Lisa Zion, contributing writer
Published on LatinoLA: March 28, 2009

Monica Palacios is Breaking Boundaries

Hi Monica ÔÇô thank you for taking some time for me today.

Monica: You're welcome.

The last time I saw you, you had just opened your one woman show, "Greetings from a Queer Senorita" in Orange County.

Monica: Yes, that's right.

What's new with you?

Monica: I'm preparing for a show at Loyola Marymount University in Westchester on April 13. And I have a show on April 24 in Houston. So the pressure is on!

Now you taught at LMU for several years. What did you teach?

Monica: I was teaching under the American Culture Studies, I was teaching a course that had to do with race. It was called Women of Color in Film and I would show women's films and also independent films that focused on women of color. The curriculum included analyzing films featuring women of color with attention to feminism, gender, race, class, nationality and sexuality. Students also learned the fundamentals of film structure. There were a lot of films that the students had never seen before and it was an eye opener. Just trying to fathom how Hollywood was to women of color.

What do you want our readers to know about this very Catholic university?

Monica: It's a great institution. I've met a lot of great professors there; I've met a lot of great students there. But, it had a history of not recognizing LGBT students. Since the 1980's the students wanted more visibility, they had to fight for years to be recognized and now they are. I have to take my hat off to them. At one point they even presented LMU with a lawsuit. This was happening in the 1990s and the students had many hurdles to jump over to make their presence known. By 2005 the group became known at the Gay Straight Alliance. They have been producing mostly workshops and panels. And the show that I'm doing on April 13 is the first live performance by a gay performer on this campus.

How exciting! Do you think that because you were a Professor there that is the reason that they asked you to perform?

Monica: I had a student who took my performance class and she always advocated for LGBT issues. She approached me and said now is the time to do this. The Gay Straight Alliance was also very involved in the No on Prop. 8 campaign. And it just seemed like the perfect time to do a show like this. It's revolutionary! It will be humorous, educational and informative. I want to reach them at their level. The show will be in 2 acts: Act I will be LGBT students doing performances, poetry, and drag. In Act II, I will do my very queer material and simply represent queer raza!

Where can we get tickets?

Monica: It's a free event and open to the public. The show is at 7PM at Loyola Marymount University, Huesman Lounge, upper campus in Westchester

You also have an event coming up in Houston on April 24.

Monica: Yes, I will be participating in the Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz Festival and performing my show, "Greetings from a Queer Se??orita" at the Multicultural Education and Counseling through the Arts (MECA) Dow School. You can get ticket information on my website:

Do you have any relatives in Houston?

Monica: Not that I know of, but there is a little city near Houston, called Palacios. Who knows, I may have to take a day trip there.

Where you get your material?

Monica: Everyday life! I live in Venice Beach and all I have to do is walk out my front door to see all the diversity life has to offer.

I just did an interview with George Lopez and I heard he is getting his own talk show soon. I think we should start a letter writing campaign to get you on his show as one of the first guests.

Monica: Yes, I read that interview. That would be so amazing to be on his new show. I'm so excited for him. And it's about time that we have one of our own who has a talk show.

Well, Monica thank you for taking some time for our readers. We always love to hear from you and get a glimpse of your life.

Monica: Thank you, please come to the show and bring your friends!

About Lisa Zion, contributing writer:
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