TechTown presents June 29 sneak preview of ‘Macho Men and the Women Who Love Them’June 12, 2012
LA-based Oro Entertainment enlists TechTown to franchise hit Latino musical comedy
June 12, 2012 (Detroit) — TechTown, Wayne State University’s business incubator, will present a sneak preview of “Macho Men and the Women Who Love Them,” the hit live musical comedy from Los Angeles, on June 29, 2012, at the University of Michigan Detroit Center, Orchestra Place.
As the Detroit-based business incubator of theatrical and media production company Oro Entertainment, TechTown recently awarded entrepreneurs Maria Costa and Francisco Segovia a grant to complete the screenplay for the feature film translation of “Macho Men,” and are providing support for Oro’s expansion into untapped urban markets nationwide. According to Segovia, plans are to for Oro to re-launch the show’s national tour in Detroit and take the production to major cities throughout the United States.
“Macho Men” has sold out performances in 16 cities in six countries as well as the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood, Calif., and other venues along the West Coast. The show has won the prestigious Imagen Award for Best Theatrical Production and the Los Angeles Women’s Theatre Festival Maverick Award.
“Michigan has one of the fastest-growing Hispanic and Latino populations in the country, and yet there is a dearth of live theater geared to that audience locally,” noted Costa, who co-produces the show with Segovia. “TechTown is playing a critical role in the development of our business strategy and is helping us ensure that ‘Macho Men’ successfully addresses this unmet market need. We are thrilled and honored that TechTown is a presenting sponsor of the show’s performance in Detroit.”
The award-winning production stars Costa, a Detroit native and acclaimed actress/comedian whom critics have described as the Latina Lucille Ball and female John Leguizamo. In her hilarious and thought-provoking one-woman stand-up comedy routine, Costa transforms into an outrageous cast of characters, each of which depicts the struggles of “loving a macho man.” Costa’s characters include her ultra-macho father, overly critical mother-in-law, transsexual brother, socialite Aunt Maria Feinstein and many more. Costa is backed by a live salsa band and dancers.
“The show’s themes and humor are universal,” Segovia explained. “’Macho Men’ is about relationships and compromise.”
According to TechTown entrepreneurial champion Derrin Leppek, who provides one-on-one coaching to Oro Entertainment as their primary advisor through TechTown’s Thrive program, the company’s business model is similar to the franchise model made famous by Tyler Perry. Both connect with a minority audience through branded characters.
“TechTown may have ‘tech’ in its name, but supporting creative companies is a big part of what we do,” Leppek explained. “Companies like Oro, which speak to diverse communities, have tremendous potential to enlist potential investors, cultivate a loyal fan base, and ultimately, create jobs. As a place-based incubator, TechTown is committed to helping Detroit’s creative companies succeed.”
Another of TechTown’s entrepreneurial champions, Herb Drayton, who also provides coaching support for Oro’s creative team, explained that “the company has developed several spinoff products based on the ‘Macho Men’ brand.” “Macho Men and the Women Who Love Them,” “Macho Men and the Women Who Marry Them,” and “Macho Men Have a Baby” are examples. Plans are for Oro to release these products through multiple platforms, including plays, DVDs, films, television series and special event productions. The “Macho Men and the Women Who Love Them” play is currently distributed worldwide on DVD by Image Entertainment through Amazon, Netflix and Blockbuster, produced by Oro Entertainment.
In addition to starring in “Macho Men,” Costa is the creator, co-writer, co-producer and director of the production. As a seasoned Hollywood actress, Costa is an Alma Award–nominated actress who has starred in several primetime television shows. Milestone achievements include her popular role as Valerie on ABC’s “Ugly Betty,” her role in “Universal Remote” (currently airing on Showtime), guest roles on Lifetime’s “Strong Medicine” and CBS’s “Joan of Arcadia,” and series regular roles in such series as ABC’s “Dangerous Minds” and BRAVO’S “The It Factor LA.” Before moving to Los Angeles, Costa worked as on-air talent, writer and producer for Detroit Public Television for programming that aired nationally on the PBS Network. She starred in productions directed and written by renowned Detroit playwright Ron Milner and performed at Detroit’s Purple Rose Theatre under the co-direction of movie actor Jeff Daniels, who originally encouraged Costa to move to Los Angeles to work in television and film.
Oro Entertainment will host Macho Men’s official Detroit premiere on July 26, 2012, at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History. The event will begin at 6:30 p.m. with a pre-reception event featuring tropical appetizers and a tequila tasting hosted by Blue Nectar Tequila. The “Macho Men” show will begin at 7:45 p.m. and will be followed by a salsa afterglow featuring live music and dancing. Plans are for additional “Macho Men” performances in August and September, and ultimately, to film for Detroit Public Television and broadcast the live performances in markets nationwide on PBS.
Jamie Westrick, Detroit Public Television’s vice president of national fundraising programs, said, “Detroit PBS, a leading national producer and distributor of national PBS fundraising and pledge events, is excited to partner with Oro Entertainment to perpetuate the ‘Macho Men’ franchise based on the successful ‘Macho Men and the Women Who Love Them’ theatrical production. In partnering with Oro to launch the brand nationally, WTVS will be involved in program and product development and production, distribution, station marketing and connecting audiences nationwide with local ‘Macho Men’ performances.”
To learn more about the “Macho Men” production visit www.mariacosta.com.
TechTown works to reignite Detroit's entrepreneurial culture by fueling business growth, job creation and the revitalization of Midtown and beyond. Through its partners and programs, the nonprofit business incubator and accelerator connects small businesses to the customers, talent, capital and location necessary to build a thriving enterprise in Southeast Michigan. Its entrepreneurs also gain unique access to research, academic and technology assets through TechTown's partnership with Wayne State University. To learn more about TechTown, visit http://techtownwsu.org.
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