Express Week

“KOOKSPEAK” by Summer Dawn Hortillosa

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Delightful death fantasies, gravely serious hand-puppet conversations, the Most Annoying Girl in the World voice and performing at the Grammy's with your true love, a FIFA World Cup star/YouTube phenomenon -- it's all fun in “Kookspeak,” a series of monologues from the mouths of people who live inside their heads.


Jersey City writer, director and actress Summer Dawn Hortillosa splashed onto the scene when she co-founded the Rudesby Algorithm Youth Acting Company. They became Art House Productions’ first Emerging Artists when she directed an offbeat production of Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night” in 2007 at 17.

Now, the 22-year-old returns to Art House for their So Low Theater Festival with her one-woman show, “Kookspeak.” Three of the show’s four monologues are based off Hortillosa’s short stories and showcase her wacky wit and knack for capturing the texture of everyday emotional experiences. The fourth is an original monologue specially written for So Low.

The monologues, in order, are:

Something Inside That Head of Yours: A paranoid whose idea of fun is thinking up wacky ways to die imagines that a young man working at a new bakery is a serial killer, but falls in love with him anyway.

Totally Engaged: A woman finally meets a man she wants to marry. He’s perfect, except for one little thing – he doesn’t want her, a subtext she “hears” during all their conversations.

Talk: Street-smart Selena has mastered the Chilltown dating scene with two lethal weapons -- the Most Annoying Girl in the World’s voice, and that of the Sexiest Female in the World.

Senses: A woman’s mischievous mind refuses to let her deny her love for her soulmate, sending her on a journey through different idealized lives with him until the lines between the perfection of reality and of her imagination are blurred.

A video clip of Hortillosa performing “Something Inside that Head of Yours” can be found here:


“Kookspeak” will be part of the So Low Theater Festival, which runs Sept. 27-30, on Thursday, Sept. 27 at 8 pm and Saturday, Sept. 29 at 10:30 pm. The show will be at Art House Productions, 1 McWilliams Pl., Jersey City, NJ.

Tickets are $6. For more information, visit or


This will be Hortillosa’s first major stage role since 2008. Since winning the New Jersey Young Playwrights Contest and Governor’s Award in Arts Education in 2007 at age 16, she has written five plays and directed six. In March, her drama “Secrets; Love” had a successful run at the Monroe Center for the Arts in Hoboken and was part of the Downtown Urban Theater Festival in SoHo. In June, she received the Lavina Kohl Award in Literature from the NJ Chapter of the National Society of Arts and Letters.

The show will also feature “Under the Great Wave” by The Ugly Club and a visuals by videographer Brett Wilshe starring Hortillosa and Life Eaters/They Live bassist John Feuerbach.

About the playwright and actress

Summer Dawn Hortillosa is an American of Chinese, Spanish and Filipino descent. At 23, she is a young, up-and-coming playwright. As the writer, director and star of this one-woman show, she exemplifies the concept of DIY, Digable’s theme for 2013. Growing up on food stamps, taking care of her chronically ill mother and working right out of high school (her family’s financial situation prevented her from going to college as planned at Duke University), Hortillosa is an example of rising above adversity.

“Kookspeak” is comedic and quirky but also has heartfelt moments of romance and insight on relationships.

The Filipino Express

2711 John F. Kennedy Boulevard
Jersey City, NJ 07306 USA.

Phone: 201 434-1114
Fax: 201 434-0880

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