Meet Gia Valverde: Denver native finds a home in 'Native Gardens'

Gia Valverde QUOTE. Photo by John Moore
Photo by John Moore.

The first time the actor saw a play at Su Teatro, she knew she wanted to be an actor. Now she’s at the Denver Center.  

gia_valverde Gia Valverde is a born-and-raised Denver Northsider. She has been a company member for Su Teatro for more than 20 years. She originated roles in the world premieres of Enrique’s Journey, When Pigs Fly and Men Have Babies; El Louie and Other Post-Pachuco Dreams; and Dancing with the Spirits, all by Anthony J. Garcia. She has also been in plays by Chicano Teatro greats Luis Valdez , Rudolfo Anaya, Rodrigo Duarte Clark and Evelina Fernandez. She has done multiple film and commercial roles including “The Frame,” “Love Pirates” and is the lead in the upcoming web series “One Moment Longer.” She as also been seen in music videos for Molina Speaks and Kontrast & Fo Chief.

  • Hometown: Denver
  • Home now: Denver
  • Training: The Art Institute of Colorado
  • What’s your handle? @GiaValverde on Twitter
  • Website:
  • Twitter-sized bio: Multimedia designer, actor, mother, Denver Northsider and burrito connoisseur
  • What would you be doing if you were not an actor? I also run a multimedia business specializing in video production, graphic and web design. I like to bounce back and forth between acting and multimedia because they allow me to tell stories in different mediums, and they are both just as much my passions as my professions.
  • One role you were completely miscast for: I played an executioner in Dancing with Spirits by Anthony J. Garcia.
  • Bucket-list role: Anita in West Side Story
  • What’s playing on your Spotify? Smino’s ‘blkswn‘ album
  • What’s one thing we don’t know about you? You will occasionally find me rolling burritos (mostly eating them) at Lucero’s & Sons on 52nd Avenue and Pecos Street.
  • Gia Valverde Su Teatro Native GardensOne time you saw greatness play out in front of you: The first time I saw a play at Su Teatro, I knew I wanted to be an actor. Seeing Chicano representation on stage at a young age helped me take the leap from dream to do. I joined the Su Teatro company immediately after seeing a show at 11 years old. They became my second family. (Pictured from left: Sonia Justl, Marianna Chavez, Gia Valverde and Amy Luna in Su Teatro’s ‘The Lamented Last Dance at the Rainbow Ballroom.’)
  • One thing we should be doing to foster the next generation of theatregoers? The Denver Center is putting out a lot of shows with diverse casts lately. The next generation of theatregoers are going to be brought in by diversity and representation.
  • What is Native Gardens all about? Karen Zacarías‘ play is about a young Latino couple who move into a well-established D.C. neighborhood. Though their neighbors have the best intentions, their newly budding friendship is tested when they realize their shared property line isn’t where it’s supposed to be.
  • Why does The Native Gardens matter? This is an important play right now because it represents the conversation a lot of Americans are having, and offers us a fresh perspective allowing us to see what is really important.
  • What do you hope audiences get out of seeing Native Gardens? I love that this play features a Latino couple that goes against stereotype, and I hope the audience finds that refreshing as well.
  • What do you want to get off your chest? I’m passionate about self-love in all forms and practicing In Lak’Ech (The Living Code of the Heart).

More Colorado theatre coverage on the DCPA NewsCenter

Native Gardens
: Ticket information

NativeGardens_show_thumbnail_160x160Dealing with neighbors can be thorny, especially for Pablo and Tania, a young Latino couple who have just moved into a well-established D.C. neighborhood. Though Frank and Virgina have the best intentions for making the new couple feel welcome next door, their newly budding friendship is tested when they realize their shared property line isn’t where it’s supposed to be. Frank is afraid of losing his prized garden, Pablo wants what is legally his, Tania has a pregnancy and a thesis she’d rather be worrying about, and Virginia just wants some peace. But until they address the real roots of their problems, it’s all-out war in this heartfelt play about the lines that divide us and those that connect us.

  • Presented by DCPA Theatre Company
  • Performances through May 6
  • Space Theatre, Denver Performing Arts Complex
  • Call 303-893-4100 or BUY ONLINE

Previous NewsCenter coverage of Native Gardens:

More 2017-18 ‘In the Spotlife’ profiles:

• Meet Jake Mendes of This is Modern Art
• Meet Ilasiea L. Gray of Sleeping Beauty
• Meet Candy Brown of Love Letters
• Meet Christy Brandt of Creede Rep’s Arsenic and Old Lace
• Meet Deb Persoff of Vintage Theatre’s August: Osage County
• Meet Monica Joyce Thompson of Inspire Creative’s South Pacific
• Meet Hugo Jon Sayles of I Don’t Speak English Only
• Meet Marialuisa Burgos of I Don’t Speak English Only

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