Susannah Rodríguez Drissi
Susannah Rodríguez Drissi is an award-winning Cuban poet, writer, translator, playwright, director, producer, and scholar. She has a PhD in Comparative Literature from UCLA where she teaches in Writing Programs, the Academic Advancement Program, and in the Department of Comparative Literature. She is associate and literary editor at Cuba Counterpoints, a new journal dedicated to dynamic analysis and commentary on Cuban affairs, and has been a UC-Cuba Affiliate Scholar since 2009. She is currently at work on her book manuscript, Moorish Cuba. Her recent academic publications include “Reading Abdala in the Arab Spring,” in the peer-edited volume Reading Cuba (2018), edited by Alberto Sosa and published by Aduana Vieja; Cuban à l’Arab: Exile and “lo cubano” in Abilio Estévez’s Los palacios distantes and Jesús Díaz’s “The Arab Pianist” in peer-edited volume The Cuban Diaspora: A Dispersed People (2014), edited by Jorge Duany, and also published by Editorial Aduana Vieja; and “Eating in Cuban: The Cuban Cena in Literature and Film” in the peer-edited volume Health Travels: Cuban Health(care), On and Off the Island, published by UC Medical Humanities Press, in 2013.
Her poems, short stories, creative non-fiction, and reviews have appeared in anthologies such as In Season—Stories of Discovery, Loss, Home, and Places in Between; and journals such as Saw Palm, Literal Magazine, Diario de Cuba (Madrid), SX Salon, Raising Mothers, Acentos Review and Cuba Counterpoints, among many others. Her first novel, Until We’re Fish, is under review at a literary press. Currently, she writes Letters from Camus, her second novel. Nocturno, a jukebox musical that pays tribute to music from the Spanish-speaking world in the 1960s and 70s is currently in production. On June 3rd, her play, Houses Without Walls, premiered at the Hollywood Fringe Festival to a sold-out audience. Houses Without Walls was Finalist for the Inkwell Playwrights’ Promise Award, and Winner of 2018 Encore! Producers’ Award, the Better Lemons Audience Choice Award, Better Lemons 100% Lemonade Award, & Better Lemons DoubleSweet Show of the Week. An excerpt from Houses Without Walls was published in December by La Casita Grande Press, an imprint of Black Rose Writing specializing in Latino/Caribbean literature. More recently, and as a member of NALIP, she works on two original scripts for cable and network television. This spring, she joined Padua Playwrights in “Shepard and the Avant-Garde,” a groundbreaking and adventurous new interdisciplinary theatre workshop bringing together directors, playwrights, and actors. A selection from her new play, The Fruit Flies, was showcased at PaduaLab’s Padua’s Shepard & the Avant-garde Showcase on July 8th, 2018. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband and two daughters. Visit her at www.susannahrodríguezdrissi.com, find her on Twitter at @rsdrissi, or Instagram @susannahdrissi.