‘Chimichangas and Zoloft’: alumna earns raves for off Broadway debut

playbill for UCSC alumna's off Broadway debut
UC Santa Cruz alumna Fernanda Coppel has been garnering rave reviews for the world premiere of her latest play Chimichangas and Zoloft.

The play opened on May 23 at the Tony Award-winning Atlantic Theater in New York City, which was founded by playwright David Mamet and actor William H. Macy.

Praised for its “whip smart humor” by Variety, and Coppel’s “intriguing comic voice” by the New York Times, it was acclaimed as “terrifically vibrant” by Financial Times, and “fresh and funny” by the San Francisco Chronicle.

The Associated Press noted: “A clever writer, Coppel flavors her characters’ conversations with humor or sarcasm as well as genuine emotion. She definitely knows how to create theatrical tension.”

Coppell graduated from UCSC’s Merrill College in 2007 with a degree in Literature, and received her MFA in dramatic writing from New York University.

Chimichangas and Zoloft is about a woman who, after the disappointment of her 40th birthday, leaves her family and goes on a prescription Zoloft and greasy chimichangas binge. In the meantime, her daughter and best friend team up to bring her back home.

It’s an irreverent story that examines happiness and sexuality through the eyes of two brazen teenagers.

As Coppel noted in UCSC’s Spring Review Magazine, “My whole M.O. is to write more parts for Latina women…to be different than what is seen in mainstream theater today.”

The play runs at the Atlantic through June 24.