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All in the familia: López trio aims to display more Latino films, theater productions in SF
Eliana López, Alfonso López, and Ivette Carolina Agudelo, from 3 López Productions. Courtesy 3 López Productions
Eliana López, Alfonso López, and Ivette Carolina Agudelo, from 3 López Productions. Courtesy 3 López Productions

Lights, camera and action are what the members of the Venezuelan 3 López Productions have lived by, as they’ve honed their craft from set-to-set in the television business.

The trio, composed of actress and producer, Eliana López; her brother and producer, Alfonso López; and his wife, actress and co-producer, Ivette Carolina Agudelo, have made their way from Venezuela to San Francisco to launch several projects.

“San Francisco has adapted to us, and us to it,” Agudelo said. “I think we’ve come at the precise moment in which we have been able to contribute to the cultural aspect of the city with our two cents. This city has given us the opportunity to contribute. The city has also nurtured us with many great things and new experiences.”

In 2014, Eliana produced a Spanish-speaking version of the “Vagina Monologues.” Although successful, performing the show did pose complications, as it’s not a topic that is discussed much within the Latino community.

“We did it for the first time in 2014. That was the first work in which I acted and produced here in San Francisco,” said Eliana. “It went very well. It was the first experiment to see if in fact there was a public for this type of show. However, I did find myself with a reality within our Latin American countries: it was a taboo. Since there was some prejudice, it was the men who would buy the tickets and would take their wives, mothers, and the daughters to see the production. That happened so much.”

But, Eliana feels that ironically it’s the women who came out feeling empowered after watching the monologues.

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Director Alfonso Lopez with his sister Eliana Lopez. Courtesy 3 López Productions

“That has been the success of that performance,” she said.

However, this hasn’t been her only gig in San Francisco. She translated what was considered the worst scandal in San Francisco in 2012 into a play, called “What is the Scandal?” with her brother Alfonso. The scandal in question involved her husband and former Sheriff, Ross Mirkarimi, who was accused of domestic violence. The play however was about more than just the scandal, it illustrated what Eliana and her family went through, and the challenges that the Latino community faces. This year, the trio plans a return to the big stage with another production of the play.

“I’m very happy because that play was the opportunity to start working with my brother, it was the collaboration that we both looked for between us,” said Eliana. “It has also been a way to transform an experience that was very painful and traumatic—transform it into something positive and to raise my voice and speak on all of the reflections and all of those emotions that I had during that moment.”

This year, 3 López Productions plans to launch several projects. The company is planning to show a series of screenings of Latin American films, one of which is the first Venezuelan winner of the 2014 Goya Awards, “My Straight Son.” Eliana also plans to kick off her tour in March with “What is the Scandal?” and will resume the “Vagina Monologues” in early April in San Francisco.

“Part of our objective is being able to keep telling stories about the community,” said Alfonso. “Part of the objective is to be open to the events that are happening in San Francisco with immigration, [and] with the African-American community.”

Story by: Alejandro Galicia Díaz