Monologue Monday

Monologue Monday: Gabriela in References to Salvador Dalí Make Me Hot (José Rivera)

Now THAT is a title.

Screen Shot 2019-04-21 at 2.54.24 PM
I can see it.


The plot must be read to be believed:

“The play opens on a hot summer night in the desert town of Barstow, California. GABRIELA lies in the grass talking to the MOON, who is depicted as a mysterious violin player perched on top of an old refrigerator. As GABRIELA falls asleep, her dream world materializes before us, in a wonderfully seductive scene between GABRIELA’s pampered house CAT and CAT’s wild suitor, a feral COYOTE. While these characters may be fantastical players in GABRIELA’s dream world, their animalism is rich with humanity. COYOTE shamelessly solicits CAT, swearing to make all nine of her lives orgasm, and CAT ultimately gives in to his wild lust, despite her distaste for the undomesticated.

As they howl in heat, GABRIELA wakes up (or is she still dreaming?) and runs out of her house with a shotgun, paranoid that the cactuses are closing in on her. Her desperation and confusion lead her to tears, and she turns to the MOON for an explanation. Deeply moved by GABRIELA’s sadness, the MOON descends from the sky, shaking the earth with his gravitational force. He and GABRIELA begin to dance, and she is utterly seduced by his celestial being. As they dance, GABRIELA’S perverted 14-year-old neighbor MARTIN appears and declares his love for GABRIELA. He and the MOON enter a duel, and the MOON knocks him unconscious. As GABRIELA comforts MARTIN, the MOON returns to the sky, and the two mortals fall asleep together in the backyard.

The next morning, GABRIELA awakes to find her husband BENITO, standing in her kitchen. He is a soldier in the U.S. Army, and she has not seen him in over two months. They greet each other with strained silence, then exchange a quick kiss. BENITO is immediately aroused by his wife’s heavenly figure, unable to keep his hands off her after having been away for so long. But GABRIELA, feeling like a cheap army whore, shoves him away. The two struggle, each in their own way, to rekindle the romance that once consumed them; GABRIELA aching to crawl inside BENITO’S head and rediscover the man she fell in love with, BENITO longing to reignite their once fiery passion. The army has damaged them both, and they are strangers to each other’s misery. Gabriela’s surrealist dreams elucidate her painful reality.

Rivera seamlessly weaves together GABRIELA’s dream world with her real one, blurring the boundaries between fantasy and reality in a remarkably clever and compelling way. His language is lyrical but unpretentious, described by critics as being both earthy and poetic. He uses magical realism to provide subtle social commentary. Though it touches on issues of war, the play is surprisingly light, witty, and entertaining. REFERENCES TO SALVADOR DALI MAKE ME HOT is a beautiful script, charged with romantic imagery, lyrical wit, and a sexual pulse that never ceases.”

Thank you to an old Yale production for said synopsis.

I doubt References to Salvador Dalí Make Me Hot will play Kaysville, Utah anytime soon.

Meanwhile, here’s a Finnish production’s preview:


In case you don’t know who Salvador Dalí is, he made this:

WARNING: Salvador Dalí reference.

It’s easy to see why Gabriela has such good monologues. It’s her story and her liberation.

She has a couple of monologues with Youtube videos.

For some reason, a scanned copy of the play is available here.

Rivera won an Obie for writing. John Ortiz won for acting.

The actress who played Gabriela (the one and only Rosie Perez) won a Theatre World Award.

The play’s Off-Broadway run is here.

José Rivera has had a pretty good career writing for stage, film and television.

Audiences may recognize titles such as Diff’rent Strokes, Eerie, Indiana, Goosebumps, Family Matters and The Motorcycle Diaries.

Here’s happening poster art for various productions:

Now playing in Pomona!
Michigan State University.
In Long Beach.
contains suggestive material
By now, I should make some posts about theatre poster art.


Meanwhile, in Austin

Let’s get back to the monologues…here’s the first one…Gabriela is telling her cat NOT to go into the desert…

Stupid you…







In class…


Before you’re born…

Gabriella having a chat with the moon.

And there you have it. Three Gabriela monologues.

Just as long as we don’t have a References to Bob Ross Make Me Hot play, the world is safe.

1 thought on “Monologue Monday: Gabriela in References to Salvador Dalí Make Me Hot (José Rivera)”

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