Alumna Paola Lázaro '13 Performs In 'Our Lady of 121st Street'

June 7, 2018

Paola Lázaro-Muñoz '13, an alumna from the Playwriting concentration, is one of the lead actresses in the play, Our Lady of 121st Street, currently showcasing at Signature Theater in Times Square. The darkly comedic play follows friends and family who have gathered in Harlem for Sister Rose’s wake—only to discover that the nun’s corpse has been stolen from her coffin. Lázaro-Muñoz plays Norca, “an addict spoiling for a fight.”


In a review by the critic Jesse Green of the New York Times, Green wrote, “undoubtedly the most enjoyable screw-ups you can catch right now are those hanging around the Ortiz Funeral Parlor in Our Lady of 121st Street, which opened in a raucous, rough-edged revival...Thin-skinned and foul-mouthed, with grudges against everyone, the bereaved are a dirty dozen of unpublishable grievance.” Our Lady of 121st Street is directed by Phylicia Rashad, most known for her role as Claire Huxable on the Cosby Show.


Playwright Stephen Adly Guirgis—who authored the plays, Jesus Hopped the A Train (2002), The Last Days of Judas Iscariot (2005), and The Motherfucker with the Hat (2011)—was one of Lázaro-Muñoz’s mentors at Columbia.


Lázaro-Muñoz hails from Puerto Rico. Recently, she received the Emerging Writer Fellowship from The Public Theater, which includes a $50,000 grant and two years of financial and professional support to write a new play. From 2016 to 2017, she was the Tow Playwright-in-Residence. Her first professionally produced play, Tell Hector I Miss Him, showcased in January 2017, and drew from Lázaro-Muñoz’s family in Puerto Rico.


Our Lady of 121st Street runs until June 17th, 2018.