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Forgiveness, home and baking intertwine in the play 'Sweet Goats and Blueberry Señoritas'

Vanessa Garcia is a Cuban-American playwright, author and essayist from Miami.
Courtesy of Vanessa Garcia
Vanessa Garcia is a Cuban-American playwright, author and essayist from Miami.

Vanessa Garcia sees the relationship between Cuba and Miami as a long conversation, a call and response, a song echoing across the water.

As a writer and the child of Cuban immigrants, she grew up hearing stories of escape and exile from her parents and grandparents, those rich histories ladled out alongside her abuelos’ black beans.

Later, she went off to re-discover Cuba for herself.

Now, Vanessa uses her work as a playwright, a children’s book author and an essayist to ask – where is home? And how can we carry it with us — like a handful of seashells or a loaf of Cuban bread.

One of her latest projects is the play Sweet Goats and Blueberry Señoritas.

In the play, a Cuban-American from Miami moves to Maine and opens a bakery. As she makes Cuban pastries with local ingredients, she wonders if home is a place, a person or an identity.

To write the play, Vanessa teamed up with someone who calls both Maine and Miami home — the award-winning poet Richard Blanco.

Sweet Goats and Blueberry Señoritas premiered in Portland early this year and now they brought it home to Miami.

It’s playing at the Actor’s Playhouse in Coral Gables through Dec. 3.

On the Nov. 20 episode of Sundial, Vanessa joined us to talk about telling family stories through food and the stage.

On Sundial’s previous episode, we spoke with Luis Alberto Urrea. He is a Mexican-American poet, novelist and essayist. He was at the Miami Book Fair on Sunday presenting his latest book Good Night, Irene.

Listen to Sundial Monday through Thursday on WLRN, 91.3 FM, live at 1 p.m., rebroadcast at 8 p.m. Missed a show? Find every episode of Sundial on your favorite podcast app, such as Apple PodcastsStitcher and Spotify.

Kate Payne is WLRN's Education Reporter. Reach her at kpayne@wlrnnews.org
Leslie Ovalle Atkinson is the former lead producer behind Sundial. As a multimedia producer, she also worked on visual and digital storytelling.
Elisa Baena is a former associate producer for Sundial.