Locals to Know: Meet Carmen Pelaez, playwright, performer and director with Miami New Drama

Photo provided by Rafael Guillén

Tell us about your work — your job and/or any volunteer work. 

I’m a playwright, performer and director — basically, I love to tell stories in any medium I can. I also work with various advocacy groups, mostly Miami Freedom Project, but also on President Joe Biden’s Cuban-American leader advisory team.

What’s your favorite Miami memory? 

Sitting in my grandparents’ den enjoying ‘happy hour’ with whiskey and waters on ice looking out at the Miami sunset.

Pick a favorite local outdoor experience. What is it? What’re we doing? Who’s going with ya?

My favorite outdoor experience in Miami usually involves an O, Miami event. They always manage to find creative ways to take in Miami. I usually go with friends and family.

I love to walk my dog Coco in my Shenandoah neighborhood, too. The mid-century houses have such great small details, and my pup is just funny. Her interactions with other dogs are ridiculous, so I always enjoy that.

The Center for Subtropical Affairs is always fun, and so is sitting outside having a slice behind Paradis. I haven’t been there once without crossing paths with somebody I love talking to.

What’s your favorite local Instagram or TikTok account and why? 

Pastelito Betty ’cause she’s hilarious.

If you could eat only one meal from a local restaurant for the rest of your life, what would it be? 

Croqueta preparada from Sanguich because it’s perfect.

What’s a project you’re working on (big or small) and how can our readers help you with it?

The Cuban Vote presented by Miami New Drama at the Colony Theatre opens up this week and I’m thrilled with the cast and crew. We’re having such a good time; it’s my love letter to Miami and I hope it writes back!

What are you looking forward to this year?

Being pleasantly surprised.

That’s a wrap on this week’s Locals to Know. Know someone who ought to be featured or would like to be featured yourself? Reach out by sending an email to [email protected] with the subject line “TNT Locals to Know 2022.” If chosen, you might just see yourself or a friend in a future newsletter.