Oral Histories

Interview of John Malpede

Founding artistic director of the performance group and non-profit arts organization the Los Angeles Poverty Department.
Community-Engaged Theater in Los Angeles
COVID-19 Pandemic
Biographical Note:
Founding artistic director of the performance group and non-profit arts organization the Los Angeles Poverty Department.
Collings, Jane
Malpede, John
Persons Present:
Sessions one through four: Malpede and Collings. Session five was a joint session with Malpede and Henriette Brouwers.
Place Conducted:
18th Street Arts Center in Santa Monica, California. Because of the necessity of restricting personal contact during the COVID-19 pandemic, the fifth session was conducted by the Zoom video conferencing platform.
Supporting Documents:
Records relating to the interview are located in the office of the UCLA Library’s Center for Oral History Research.
Interviewer Background and Preparation:
The interview was conducted by Jane Collings, principal editor and interviewer, UCLA Center for Oral History Research; Ph.D., Critical Studies in Film and Television, UCLA.Collings prepared for the interview by reviewing material on the history of Malpede's work as an artist and the work of Los Angeles Poverty Department.
Processing of Interview:
For sessions one through four the interviewer prepared a timed log of the audio recording of the interview. Malpede was given the opportunity to review the log in order to supply missing or misspelled names and to verify the accuracy of the content but made no changes. Session five was recorded jointly with Henriette Brouwers. It was transcribed using a machine transcribing software and audit edited by student staff. Malpede and Brouwers made several corrections to the transcript.
6.5 hrs.
Regents of the University of California, UCLA Library.
Series Statement:
The Community-Engaged Theater in Los Angeles series seeks to document the work of a grouping of theater companies in Los Angeles whose mission combines an artistic focus with explicit attention to social justice and community building. The companies included use a working method that seeks creative input from the communities in which they are staging work and make concerted efforts to solicit feedback from audiences regarding the political and social themes of the work once staged. As well, these companies have received acclaim and recongition from the theater world. Companies included in the series, once it is complete, will include Cornerstone Theater Company, Watts Village Theater Company, Los Angeles Poverty Department and East L.A. Rep.
In accordance with the interviewee's wishes, this oral history can only be accessed on site at UCLA Library Special Collections.