Spotlight on the Regional Alliances
Colectivo Teatral Nuevo México
This is the third post in a series of profiles of Latina/o regional alliances from around the country. Responses for this interview were provided by Linda Lopez McAlister on behalf of Colectivo Teatral Nuevo México.
Colectivo Teatral Nuevo México was founded in January, 2014 and serves New Mexico.
What’s your mission?
Colectivo Teatral Nuevo México is an organization of Latino/a theatre companies and artists in the state of New Mexico. Our mission is to work together to sustain and advance our state’s long history of theatre and our community of artists by sharing resources, educating the public, and representing, promoting, and creating Latino/a theatre.
How did your alliance form?
We were disappointed that no New Mexico Latino theatre companies were represented at the convening in Boston in 2013, so we thought that we needed to form an organization similar to TANTO or others that were represented, since there’s lots of Latino theatre happening in New Mexico.
How is your alliance structured? Does one person lead, a team lead, etc.?
We have very little structure at the moment. There’s a kind of a core group of theatre members and then a facebook public group that any interested individual can join.
How does someone become a member? What membership requirements do you have, and where can people go to get more information?
Theatre company members have to be committed to producing plays by Latina/o playwrights at least most of the time. Any individual can become a member of the facebook group.
How big is your current membership:
Theatre companies: ten. Individual group members: eighty-nine.
Who makes up your current membership?
Actors, designers, directors, playwrights, producers, presenters, scholars, and dramaturgs.
Who are the most well-represented groups in your membership from the list above? Actors, producers, and directors.
Describe your core programs/activities:
So far we’ve been using mostly the facebook group to keep one another informed about what our members are doing, posting show information, auditions, reviews, and other related links.
Since your alliance’s inception, what project have you completed that are you most proud of?
The biggest development has been the creation of the Siembra: Latino Theatre Festival 2014-2015 at the National Hispanic Cultural Center. Shortly after the Colectivo formed, the three members who are on the performing arts staff of the National Hispanic Cultural Center (Reeve Love, Joseph Wasson, Jr., and Linda Lopez McAlister) noticed that suddenly there were more theatre producing companies than normal wanting to bring shows to the Center. Many of them were members of the Colectivo. Suddenly the idea hit us that we had the makings of a year-long Latino theatre festival. Its founding is described in this article by local theatre writer David Steinberg.
The first year of Siembra is now over, but the seeds certainly did bear fruit and Siembra Latino Theatre Season 2015-2016 will be starting on July 30 with Camino Real Productions staging of Liz Coronado Castillo’s play Aye, No! The remaining productions include: Our Lady of Mariposas by Alexandra Hudson (Teatro Paraguas); Confessions of a MEXPatriate by Raul Garza (Fuego Productions); Estoy en el Rincón by Salome Martinez-Lutz (Teatro Nuevo México); The Farolitos of Christmas by Rudolfo Anaya (Vortex Theatre); Traveling with Angels by René Peña; Real Women Have Curves by Josefina López (Teatro Nuevo México); Yo Soy Joaquín! by Rodolfo “Corky” Gonzales, adapted by Patricio Trujillo; Xicanos With Guns Two! by Pepe Gallardo and Santiago Candelaria (La Mesa Produce).
What plans does your alliance have for the future that might be of interest for the world to know?
We hope to continue and expand the Siembra Latino Theatre Seasons so they become a regular, annual feature. It would be nice to have ten or eleven productions a year and to find a way for more productions from other parts of our very large state to be able to bring their shows to Albuquerque for the Festival.
What makes Latina/o theatre in your area special?
For one thing, theatre is an integral part of our New Mexican culture. See my article “Latino Theatre in New Mexico: Still Going Strong after 400 years.” We’re just thrilled that it seems to be undergoing a resurgence at the moment.