John Leguizamo, who earned a 2018 Best Play Tony Award nomination for his latest Broadway solo outing, Latin History for Morons, will reprise his performance in the incisive and irreverent show for three performances at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center June 28–30 for an upcoming Netflix special.
Netflix will film all three performances of the solo play that traces the marginalization of Latinos in U.S. history and the vital roles they played—from a satirical recap of Aztec and Incan history to stories of Latin patriots in the Revolutionary and Civil War and beyond.
Netflix has not announced a premiere date for the live taping. For tickets to the NJPAC performances, visit NJPAC.org.
“The genesis [for the show] was that my son was being bullied at school,” Leguizamo told Playbill. “He was going to a fancy private school, and he was being picked on racially. I was like, ‘Wow, this is crazy.’ And I just wanted to give my son facts and words to protect himself. I wanted him to defend himself with words and not fisticuffs, and I tried to empower him with that. As I started doing research, I was like, ‘Oh my God, I’m actually the one who’s being educated and empowered, and my self worth is boosting. It’s not just my son, it’s me who’s growing as a man.’”
“You have so many emotions when you discover this stuff,” Leguizamo added. “First of all, you’re angered, then you’re heartbroken, and then you feel empowered. When I learned that we Latin people are the sons and daughters of the American Revolution... Cuban women in Virginia sold their jewelry to feed the patriots. Gálvez, the Latin general in New Orleans, gave $70,000 worth of weapons to George Washington. So we helped finance the American Revolution. Ten thousand Latinos fought. Venezuelans, Puerto Ricans, Cubans, and Mexicans fought in the American Revolution. You never hear about that. You never hear about those contributions.”