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Beto O'Byrne (right) works with artist in residence Chas Croslin (center) and ethnomusicologist Russell Rodriguez (left) on music design for future development.
Producing Artistic Director Kinan Valdez and El Teatro Campesino ensemble members Adrian Torres and Christy Sandoval demonstrate "Corrido", one of the company's signature aesthetics, as part of Radical Evolution's NET Residency.
Preparing for Workshop
Members of ETC and Radical Evolution prepare for the upcoming development. In front: Joe Luis Cedillo (director) and Meropi Peponides (dramaturg). In the back: Chas Croslin (ETC Artist in Residence and Musician/Composer)
Shadow Work - Immigrating to NYC
Story/design development during the residency. This scene depicts the immigration of Irish soldiers to the United States. Many of the soldiers that formed the San Patricios, or St. Patrick’s Battalion, were new immigrants from Ireland, fresh off the boat from the old country. They were met on the docks by recruiters and signed up immediately in hopes of security and a better life than the one they find slums like New York City’s Five Points. Little did they know that they would face brutal discipline, terrible working conditions, and be forced to commit unexpected atrocities on their fellow Catholics in Mexcio, which was a large reason why many would cross over to fight for Mexico when the war begins. Left to Right: Chaveli Flores, Jesse Huerta, Meropi Peponides, and Joe Luis Cedillo.
Teatro School - Corrido
ETC Ensemble Members Christy Sandoval and Adrian Torres demonstrate the Corrido Style.
Beto O'Byrne explores era and cultural appropriate songs with El Teatro Campesino Artist-in-Residence Chas Croslin.
Shadow Work - Battle of Monterrey
Radical Evolution and ETC ensemble members explore the story of the San Patricios through shadow work and tableu. The San Patricios quickly became known as fierce fighters and strong soldiers during the Mexican American War, as depicted here in the Battle of Monterrey. For most of the war, the Patricios were artillery soldiers, which is why we chose this image. From Left to Right: Adrian Torres, Jesse Huerta, Chaveli Flores, Joe Luis Cedillo.
Teatro School - Actos
Radical Evolution Artists, guests, are guided through an exercise that explores the "Acto" Style, one of the ETC's traditional teatro forms. Left to Right: Meropi Peponides, Guest, Adrian Torres, Beto O'Byrne, and Kinan Valdez.
Shadow Work - The Execution of the San Patricios
ETC and Radical Evolution ensemble members explore the story of the San Patricios through shadow imagery.
In one of the largest mass executions in United States history, 30 members of the St. Patrick’s Battalion were executed at the moment that the US Flag was raised over Chapultepec Castle, during the battle of Chapultepec Castle, the last major battle of the Mexican American War, as depicted here. Left to Right: Adrian Torres, Jesse Huerta, and Chaveli Flores.
In 2017, Radical Evolution invited members of the El Teatro Campesino's ensemble to New York CIty where we continued to develop the project. The shadow imagery we began with has developed into tableau images, which you can see here.
Featured in this photo (l to r): Carlos Ibarra, Yadira de la Riva, Christy Sandoval, Salome Egas, Adrian Torres
As the San Patricios are legendary for their prowess as an artillery unit, many conversations about how we present this took place, as well as how we present a depiction of war and violence in general. Tableau again felt like a strong structural choice.
Featured in this photo (l to r): Carlos Ibarra, Adrian Torres, Yadira de la Riva, Christy Sandoval. Noe Montaya can be seen in the background.
Execution of San Patricios
Like the battle sequence, the execution of the San Patricios is also a moment that we are invested in exploring in-depth so that we can highlight a moment largely forgotten in US HIstory, honor the sacrifice of immigrants, and present in a way that feels connect to both companies' aesthetics.
Seen in picture (l to r): Salome Egas, Christy Sandoval, Yadira de la Riva, Adrian Torres. Background: Chas Croslin, Noe Montoya.
Music and the San Patricios
Music is a fundamental component of this show. To help us explore, we brought El Teatro Campesino maestro Noé Yaocoatl Montoya, who has both written original music for the show and helped shaped the found music from the era from Irish, Mexican, and US cultural traditions.
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