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Magaly Alabau

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Magaly Alabau


Magaly Alabau wwwcrearensalamancacomwpcontentuploadsMagaly

Magali Alabau (born 1945) is a Cuban American poet, theater director and actor. Born in Cienfuegos, Cuba, she has lived in New York since 1966. She co-founded the Spanish-English Teatro Dúo/Duo Theatre with Manuel Martín, Jr. and the lesbian theater Medusa's Revenge with Ana María Simo. After retiring from theater, she began writing poetry and published 8 books between 1986 and 2015.


Early life in Cuba

Magali Alabau was born 1945 in Cienfuegos, Cuba.

Following the Cuban Revolution, she received a government scholarship to study theater at the Escuela Nacional de Arte de Cubanacán (National Art School) in Havana. After three and a half years she was expelled along with a group of students on suspicion of homosexuality. They decided to form the theater group Teatro Joven and staged Abelardo Estorino's one-act play Los Mangos de Caín. It premiered in the auditorium of the University of Architecture Havana on August 15, 1965. Shortly before the planned third performance of the piece, the Executive Bureau of the Young Communist League shut the show down. Under the influence of homophobia and increasing cultural intolerance, she left Cuba for the United States.

Theater in New York

Alabau left Cuba through the help of her friend Inverna Lockpez and her mother, who claimed Alabau as a foster daughter. She received an exit permit in 1966 and made her way to Miami through the Freedom Flights. They settled down in New York where she continued her acting training and worked as an actor and director. She studied religion and philosophy at Hunter College. She acted in productions at INTAR, Greenwich Mews Theater, and La MaMa Experimental Theatre Club. She also worked as a theater director and in 1969 co-founded the bilingual theater project Teatro Dúo/Duo Theatre on the Lower East Side with Manuel Martín, Jr. It was one of the first Spanish American theater companies in New York. Wanting to create a lesbian community space, in 1976 she co-founded the influential lesbian theater Medusa's Revenge with writer Ana María Simo. It was the first lesbian theater in New York City.


In the mid-1980s, Alabau retired from the theater and devoted herself to poetry. In 1986 she made her debut with the poetry anthology Electra y Clitemnestra. In it she reinterprets the Greek myths of Clytemnestra and Electra, transforming the context from heterosexual to lesbian. Central themes in her poetry collections include intimacy, eroticism, and lesbian love. Her collection of poems Volver (2012) deals with her exile and her relationship to her homeland.

After living 28 years in Manhattan, she moved to Woodstock in upstate New York in 1996. She retired from the literary world and devoted herself to the rescue of abandoned pets. In 2009 she began writing poems again.


  • Electra y Clitemnestra. Poema. Maitén Books, New York 1986. OCLC 253975578
  • La extremaunción diaria. Gedichtband, Rondas, Madrid 1986.
  • Ras. Medusa, New York 1987. OCLC 17246591
  • Hermana. Betania, Madrid 1989, ISBN 84-86662-96-6.
  • Hemos llegado a Ilión. Betania, Madrid 1991, ISBN 84-86662-91-5.
  • Liebe. La Torre de Papel, Coral Gables 1993. OCLC 29666248
  • Dos mujeres. Betania, Madrid 2011. ISBN 8480173025
  • Volver. Betania, Madrid 2012. ISBN 8480173130
  • Awards and honors

  • First prize in Lyra's Magazine's poetry contest (New York, 1988)
  • Cintas Fellowship Award (1990)
  • Latin American Institute Writers Poetry prize for best Spanish-language poetry book for Hermana (1992)
  • References

    Magaly Alabau Wikipedia

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