Deborah Wicks La Puma
A composer, music director and orchestrator, Deborah Wicks La Puma is one of the most produced Theatre for Young Audiences artists working today. With bestselling children's author Mo Willems she has created Elephant and Piggie's: We Are In A Play; Naked Mole Rat Gets Dressed: The Rock Experience; and Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus: The Musical. Her many and diverse works with playwright Karen Zacarías include Ella Enchanted (based on the book by Gail Carson Levine), Olivério: A Brazilian Twist, Frida Libre, Looking for Roberto Clemente and Einstein Is a Dummy. With playwright Adam Tobin she created She Persisted (based on the book by Chelsea Clinton), and the upcoming What Do You Do With An Idea? (based on the book by Kobi Yamada). Her adult works include the lyric opera Dakota Sky and the Mexican folk musical Perdita (based on Shakespeare's Winter's Tale) with Kathleen Cahill. She received her MFA from New York University's Tisch School of the Arts, her bachelor's degree from Stanford University, and studied folk music with ethnomusicologist Alfredo López Mondragón. Her honors include the Jane Chambers Playwriting Award, an NEA New American Works Grant, two Parents' Choice Awards, and a Helen Hayes Award for Outstanding Musical Adaptation. A proud Mexican-American and "Navy brat" who grew up in Brazil, Portugal and California, La Puma is a member of TYA USA/ASSITEJ, ASCAP and The Dramatists Guild. Mother to three daughters and Mimi the Cat, La Puma lives in Southern California with her PR agent and loving husband, Chris.