La Ruta


pink crosses against a desert sky

By Isaac Gómez

Directed by Anna Skidis Vargas 

The heartbreaking story of a border town, a bus route and the women of Ciudad Juárez who are disappearing. Inspired by real testimonies from women affected by the ongoing femicides along the border, Isaac Gómez’s La Ruta weaves together beautiful storytelling and music in a celebration of the resilience of Mexican women in the wake of tremendous loss.

For at least two decades, the women of Juárez, known as “the capital of murdered women,” have been disappearing along the bus route to and from the U.S.-owned maquiladoras where they work. Despite the dangers, the promise of opportunity and paid jobs forces them to make the trip along la ruta as they struggle to support their families. The play shifts back and forth through time following the story of two mothers, Yolanda and Marisela, as they fight to uncover the truth about their missing daughters.

Contains mature content and discussion of violence against women. Some audiences may find content presented as part of this piece triggering. Suitable for audiences 17+. 

La Ruta is approximately 90 minutes with no intermission. 

View the La Ruta playbill.

Learn more about La Ruta



Isaac Gómez is an award-winning Chicago-based playwright originally from El Paso, Texas/Ciudad Juárez, Mexico. He graduated from The University of Texas at Austin Department of Theatre and Dance in 2013 with a B.A. in Theatre and Dance. His adaptation of Erika L. Sánchez's award-winning novel I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter had it's world premiere with a Steppenwolf for Young Adults production in February 2020; his play La Ruta received its world premiere at Steppenwolf Theater Company in December of 2018; and his play the way she spoke received its Off-Broadway premiere at the Minetta Lane Theatre (produced by Audible) in Summer 2019. He is currently under commission from South Coast Repertory, Denver Center for the Performing Arts and Steep Theatre. His plays have been supported by Steppenwolf Theater Company, Denver Center, Primary Stages, Oregon Shakespeare Festival and Goodman Theatre, among others. He is the recipient of the 2018 Dramatists Guild Lanford Wilson Award, the 2017 Jeffry Melnick New Playwright Award at Primary Stages, is an inaugural 3Arts “Make A Wave” grantee and holds various affiliations with artistic organizations nationally and locally. He is a Professional Lecturer at The Theatre School at DePaul University and is represented by The Gersh Agency and Circle of Confusion.


Anna Skidis Vargas is a director and play-maker who subverts stereotypes through myth, spirituality and humor. She works primarily in devising and developing new work, with a focus on Latinx and mixed identity stories. She is the founder of Theatre Nuevo in Saint Louis, where she produced and directed This is Not Funny, Orgullo, Acronyms, HELL and Luchadora! Skidis Vargas holds a B.A. in Performance from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville and is a current M.F.A. in Directing candidate at The University of Texas at Austin where she has directed Spring Awakening, Lloronx, A Fistful of Trespassing and 30 Floods.


October 23 at 7:30 p.m. CST
October 24 at 7:30 p.m. CST

Performances of La Ruta have now concluded. Those interested in lending support for this project and the work of Texas Theatre and Dance may do so here. (Please note that this support does not include the ability to stream the performance after live shows have concluded). 

Inside Look


To request accessible viewing options for virtual performances, please notify us HERE no less than one week prior to the event date. Services are not guaranteed for all events, but we will make every effort to accommodate all requests. Please specify your preferred language when submitting your request so we can make arrangements accordingly. 

Please note that the window to submit requests for La Ruta has now closed.

The world premiere of La Ruta was produced and presented at Steppenwolf Theatre Company, Chicago, IL;
Anna D. Shapiro, Artistic Director and David Schmitz, Executive Director 

This project was developed with support from the Pivot Arts Incubator Program at Loyola University Chicago

Titles, dates, artists and venues are subject to change. 

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