Quiara Alegria Hudes, American playwright

Women's Impact Report 2012: Creatives

Quiara Alegria Hudes was the winner of the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for drama for her play “Water by the Spoonful.” The West Philadelphia native had previously been a Pulitzer finalist in 2007 with her play “Elliot, A Soldier’s Fugue.” Her book for “In the Heights” was a Pulitzer finalist and a Tony nominee, and the musical, about Latino families in the Washington Heights section of Manhattan, won the best musical Tony in 2008.

Smartphone habits: “I didn’t even know what a BlackBerry was! Oy. I’m very behind on technology, a sort of self-imposed quiet that I couldn’t write without. Distractions are dangerous to me. I need quiet. Every day there’s an art to pushing away as many distractions as possible before I can truly sit and write. Disable Internet, turn off ringer. I’m not on Facebook. That would eliminate at least an hour of work time a day. It can take me eight hours of quiet to arrive at an hour of actual physical writing. I need that quiet cushion. And on vacation? Nah, I just bring books, my hubby and my kid. I love vacation. I wish this country would adapt a European approach to vacation. In some fantasy world, I’d spend half the year on vacation but I’d probably get restless and start writing after a month.”

Life-work balance: “I had to accept early on that I can’t be a part-time writer. It’s not enough time. Which means I also had to accept that my daughter would be in full-time daycare, away from the home. (I need quiet at home to write.) I also made a decision that I could be a playwright and I could be a mother, but I couldn’t be much else. I don’t try to do everything. I try to do two things well. The result is that I love my days and my life structure but my friends and family complain that I don’t call or visit enough.”

Charitable passion: “Philadelphia Young Playwrights. They produced my first play in the 10th grade. I went to public school and their program gave me access to an arts literacy program and a direct mentorship with a theater scholar, and that kind of arts-oriented one-on-one attention was a pivotal moment in my life. I had no idea I could write as a future, and that cracked the door open for me. I am in favor of any arts or mentorship program that enhances public education. It made a huge difference in my life. It also paved a path for a way I could give back to my community — I now mentor with Young Playwrights and serve on their boar

Filed Under:

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 0

Leave a Reply

No Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More Legit News from Variety

Loading