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Where’s the Where?

Ever wonder WHY I do this podcast? WHO gave me the idea? Well, wonder no further.

Welcome to another “Behind the Scenes” Episode of “e-travels with e. trules”.

My guest this week is Jonathan Munoz-Proulx, otherwise know as “JMP”, my former student and now independent theater artist, who first gave me the idea of doing a travel podcast. After seeing me do many readings and performances of my stories on stage, and then reading them on my travel blog, he said:

“Your stories are SO MUCH BETTER when we hear your voice! You should do a podcast.”

And the rest…. is history.

Jonathan also holds the dubious distinction of having taken more classes with me than any other student at USC. He learned what “culture vulture” points were when he took my Freshman Seminar, “Self Expression and the Arts” as an enthusiastic 17 year old, and he then took my Solo Performance course – twice – where he learned the power of telling your own autobiographical stories. Even after he graduated, he took my class, “A Life in the Theater with Gordon Davidson” – also twice – where Gordon inspired all of us, by showing us with the example of his life, that theater could make a difference – to an audience, to a City, and to a culture. If you’ve never seen ZOOT SUIT, developed by Gordon with playwright Luis Valdez, go see its revival, now playing in LA at the Ahmanson Theatre in LA.

I’ve seen Jonathan grow up from a still wet-behind-the-ears college student into a self-motivated, theater director, producer, and activist…  representing and fighting for the unheard voices of people of color and gender. In this Episode, you’re in for a treat to hear how Jonathan “traveled” electronically to explore his gay Mexican-American roots by contacting gay Mexican men – in pornographic bathhouses –  over the internet!

HERE is Episode 8, “Behind the Scenes with JMP”

Travel is still one of the best ways I know to “get out of myself”. I have always thought that one of our greatest hungers, our greatest needs, as human beings is… “transcendence”. That means… connecting with something bigger than self… something universal.

Some people do it though religion or spirituality, others through love, service, or philanthropy. I spent a lifetime trying to accomplish it through “art”. I thought by finding something unique and personal inside myself,something “true”, I could connect with an audience, a body larger than myself .

Well, I think travel offers the same opportunity… to transcend the routine of ordinary life and connect to the larger world. That by experiencing other people, other cultures, other forms of dance, food, music, politics, ideas, we find that we are all connected… together.

This Podcast is my way of connecting us all – just a little closer together.

Please listen. Enjoy. Subscribe. TELL YOUR FRIENDS. And let’s all feel a little bit more… connected.

Best from Echo Park,


The Podcast is made possible with a USC Capstone grant, with support from Prof Phil Allen and the Sound Design Program at USC’s School of Dramatic Arts. With original music by Amanda Nicole Yamate and sound design by Alysha Bermudez. Produced by Harry Duran at FullCast.

What We Covered

  • 0:01 – Weekly Intro with theme music by Amanda Yamate
  • 0:26 – Welcome to JMP
  • 0:43- Acknowledgement of my podcast Subscribers, including Israeli diplomat, Raphael Morav
  • 2:10 – Introduction of JMP, Jonathan Munoz-Proulx
  • 3:32 – Trules on seeing Jonathan “grow up”
  • 4:14 – JMP on the nature of Trules’ USC classes and “mentorship”
  • 5:40 – JMP and Trules on his being a mentor; Trules on his Fulbright trip to Romania
  • 8:18 – JMP’s & Trules’ unorthodox trip to Trules’ son, Exsel’s, elementary school
  • 9:28 – JMP about Principal Garza’s tour of the elementary school’s theater with Trules on his “new stage”
  • 10:15 – Trules on retiring from USC, now simply having fun reading “travel stories” to 10 year olds
  • 11:40 – JMP on Trules’ new identity “as an artist” in this new “community”, questioning the role of “doing traditional                   theater for subscribers paying $60 a ticket”
  • 12:45 – Trules on his own retreat from traditional theater; the podcast as his new solo performance arena, and on                   “devising theater”
  • 13:41 – JMP on his “electronic travels”, looking for his Latino ancestry and queer identity, using the GPS                                    technology of gay sex apps
  • 16:30 – On the concept of “traveling electronically”
  • 16:58 – On “SERVAS” hosting and travel
  • 17:35 – JMP speaking about Trump’s election and the American experience to a user of a sex app in Australia
  • 19:03 – Trules on traveling “as an American” and seeing images of Osama Bin Laden on the screen savers of his                      Islamic colleagues in East Malaysia
  • 21:07 – JMP on French-bashing, his unpopular identity as Mexican & French
  • 21:57 – Trules’ goal of doing the podcast – connecting people all over the planet as human beings
  • 22:36 – JMP takes the “Trules Travel Quiz”
  • 26:46 – Wrap up and closing credits


Support the Podcast

Please subscribe, rate, and review the Podcast on iTunes, by clicking the iTunes logo on the top right of this page. It really helps establish the podcast with Apple. Thanks so much! Any trouble navigating iTunes? Please go HERE for an easy-to follow VIDEO.

I’d also like to thank recent contributors Tori Avey, Adam Robitel, and Bambi Reeves – for their generous donations.

As you might imagine, putting on a biweekly podcast of this caliber, with original music and sound design, really depends on the support of our community of listeners. So if you feel so inclined, or you know anybody who would like to support the podcast, I would sincerely appreciate it. Here is the link to donate.

And contact me with any questions or comments.

Happy Trails…

Production Credits

Sound design by Alysha Bermudez.
Music composed by Amanda Yamate.
Produced by Harry Duran at FullCast.
Supported by a USC Capstone Grant, with special thanks to Professor Phil Allen, Director of the Sound Design Program at USC’s School of Dramatic Arts.