Alerta

Theatre is also democratic

Review about “Alerta”, a play by Marianne Eilers Gonzàlez, performed at the Bread & Roses Theatre in July.

We are in Chile and it is 2018. Several education centres and colleges had challenged the status quo from within: students had decided to take their classrooms and lock themself as a way of protesting against unfair treatment. But, who is getting that much noise and alarm? Women are. This is what Alerta play is all about.

 

In a similar approach to “Women Talking”  the movie (2022), Alerta is performed by 10 actors who interact between each other and sitting next to the audience, allowing  us to experience closely the fears, the dreams, and the unfortunate events that lead the protagonist to fight against their authorities with strength and vulnerability at the same time. 

“Coming up with this show has been a huge and beautiful journey of personal, cultural collective and inspiring discovery. Alerta explores a part of my life in Chile, during the feminist wave in 2018. Creating Alerta comes from a need to tell these stories that drive us to bridge distances, to question, to unite”, shared the director Marianne Eilers González. 

What I loved about this play is that it promotes democratic principles which are disappearing  in some of the countries where the actors come from, and my own particularly. . Actions such as voting or hearing others’ viewpoints are powerful tools to make everybody feel listened and included. Of course coming to an agreement is always the difficult part and the play highlights this. 

 

When I left the room, it was a shame not knowing if I had to come back. I never knew what happened to these girls up there and how their fight ended. Maybe it is just like democracy: it is always a “work in progress”.  But the  show had sparked my curiosity about the feminist ‘revolution’ in Chile. 

 

Tell me more!

Alerta is created with 100% Latin America creative team and cast, having performers from Ecuador, Colombia, Chile, Argentina, Nicaragua, Perú, Brazil and México. Alerta combines theatre and activism to create a thought-provoking and impactful portrayal of the feminist movement. Search for it. Read about it and shared it. 

Have a look at @alertatheplay on Instagram. 

By Cristina Martinez


Brazilian tent at Carnavalito

We are so happy to have a record number of Brazilian participants in the Carnival this year including Paraiso School of Samba, Street Food Brazil, Sabia Duvida, Canto dos Mafagafos and Mae Zona.  Join our brazilian tent for bilingual storytelling, samba workshops, singing and games!  Full programme of Carnavalito aquí

See you this Sunday 20th of August at 11 am. Burguess park. FREE ENTRY AND ACTIVITIES!

 

 

All Brazilian delights you have been craving. You can read the menu here . 

Also they sponsored a £50 prize for the football competition! Obrigado!

 

Canto dos Mafagafos and Sabia Duvida Portuguese as a Heritage Language School: Family fun activities at Carnavalito, within Carnaval del Pueblo

Join us for a day filled with joy and culture in the heart of London as we dive into the colors, rhythms, and traditions of the carnival! This special program has been carefully crafted to provide unforgettable moments and fun for all ages. Come and experience the contagious energy of the carnival!

Exciting activities await you:

Original Samba Enredo of Bloco dos Mafagafos e dos Sabiás:
Enjoy the performance of the original Bloco dos Mafagafos e dos Sabiás’ Samba Enredo. Let yourself be carried away by the creative lyrics of Jorge Rein and the pulsating rhythm of the music by Altemir Oliveira (Xoko Oliveira). A production by Magali Hochberg and organised by Canto dos Mafagafos and Sabia Duvida Portuguese as a Heritage Language School for our Bailinho de Carnaval 2023.

Thrilling Choreography: Let’s sing and dance together!
Get ready to learn and dance to the rhythm of the Samba Enredo! Isabela Passaro and Magali Hochberg will lead a workshop with a simple and easy-to-learn choreography so everyone can dance along! Whether you’re a beginner or already have some moves, everyone is welcome to join in the pulsating rhythm of Carnaval!

Entertaining Carnaval Storytelling Performance:
Let your imagination run wild as you watch the performance of “A Formiga contabilista e sua poupança descontrolada” a hilarious Carnaval story in Portuguese written by Thais Braga, also known as MãeZona, and starring Isabela Passaro. Felisberto was a grumpy worker ant who took her accounting job very seriously. He didn’t like jokes, smiling, dancing, or company. To him, it was all a waste of time. His focus was on working and saving wealth in the Ant Bank. Felisberto was only ‘happy’ in his name… until he encountered Carnaval, and from that day on, everything changed!

Bloco dos Mafagafos e dos Sabiás’ Parade:
Come dressed up and join the parade with Bloco dos Mafagafos e dos Sabiás!

Carnaval Games:
The fun continues with a series of games inspired by the Carnaval spirit. Come have fun, make new friends, and share laughs and special moments.

Don’t miss this unique opportunity to celebrate Carnaval in great style, right in the heart of London! Bring your family and friends to immerse themselves in a festive and multicultural atmosphere that will warm your hearts and create lasting memories. We look forward to seeing you all there!

Paraiso will participate in the dance procession at 2 pm and they will offer a FREE intro to Samba workshop for all families at 12:30 in the family village!

 

Mum and Son together  

Melina and Adrian recently moved to London. They are a Brazilian family from San Pablo and would like to read a book that is close to Adrian’s heart as it related to his migration story. The name of the book is ‘A carta de Hugo’.

O Urso Hugo Está Triste: Tony, Seu Melhor Amigo De Todo O Universo Se Mudou Para Bem Longe. E Ainda Por Cima Está Se Divertindo Muito Ao Lado De Seus Novos Amigos. Junte-Se A Hugo Em Uma Grande Aventura Para Entregar Uma Carta Muito Especial E Garantir Que A Amizade Entre Ele E Tony Seja Eterna, De Verdade!

 

We are so lucky to have a popular Brazilian author coming to the Carnavalito to ready 3 wonderful books. 

“A carta que transportava saudade” 
“The letter that carried longing” is a children’s book for children who cannot heal their missing
emotions with hugs! It playfully talks about “saudade”, the feeling of missing something or
someone, and helps open the way for this delicate dialogue. This theme is essential for
immigrant families and also has lived in times of pandemic and social isolation! We must work
this out with our children and make them understand and name this feeling.
Publisher: Aquarela Livros
Link: https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/MaezonaShop

” O que tem no escuro da noite?

What lurks in the dark of night? Does pitch hold so much mystery, or is it just our imagination
evolving along with fear?
This story revolves around what happens inside a child’s head at bedtime: creatively turn the
unknown into terror! Reality is very different and dull because there is no ghost wrapped in a
white sheet, a giant ferocious monster, or a witch with a large nose and extravagant hair.
The book opens up a chance for dialogue about the fear of the dark and all the reflections that
the night brings. Shall we read together and sleep in peace?
Publisher Ases da Literatura

“ Os mosquitos nos picam e a culpa é do Noé” 
This story began thousands of years ago, right after Noah built that giant ark to house animals
and escape the great flood on Earth! This version is told by humans, right? But I bet you’ve
never heard the animals’ performance through the eyes of mosquitoes! A brawl, a rumble!
I don’t even tell you, or instead, I do! Let’s understand everything that happened on that vessel
and have a good laugh together!
I’ll tell you one thing immediately: If mosquitoes bite us and annoy us with their buzzing, they
have a good reason: IT’S NOÉ’S BLAME!
Publisher: Inverso

Author Biography:
Thais Braga
Communicator, writer, Brazilian, living in London, married and mother of 8-year-old Aurora, not
precisely in that order! I have a blog about motherhood, MãeZona, in which I explore the subject
of motherhood with humour. Adding all platforms, we are more than 170 thousand people
exchanging experiences.
My imagination runs wild, and when it comes to writing and telling stories, I feel my heart beat
faster! My first book, “The Letter That Transported Longing”, was well received by readers and
their families, so I decided to continue this endeavour in the publishing market. This time,
publishing a children’s humour book, “The mosquitoes bite us, and It’s Noah’s Fault”, re-reading
one of the most extraordinary tales of humanity to make people laugh, create fun memories
involving literature, and help them develop critical thinkers. This book is running for the Jabuti
Award in Brazil this year.
My third book, just released, is about the fear of the night and the fourth, which is on the way,
will be about learning disabilities, aiming to help children struggling at school.
I am excited about our reading on the 20th, I will have my three books with me, and you can
choose which one we will read and discuss. We will also have art and craft activities connected
with the “Letter that transported longing” book.
Hope to see you there for a fun day!If you want to know a little more about my work:
www.maezonanoblog.com
https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/MaezonaShop
Instagram: @maezonanoinsta
Facebook” @maezonanoface

 

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My uncle is not Pablo Escobar

Existing is a visibility thing.

Review about “My Uncle is not Pablo Escobar” theatre play written by Valentina Andrade, Elizabeth Alvarado, Lucy Way, and Tommy Ross-Williams. 

I know I am the new kid on the block writing about Latinx in the theatre scene in London, but I am happy to discover  Latinx actors taking the stage in different communities. The  Brixton House is one example of venues showcasing more Latinx stories. On this occasion, they hosted a play about the complexity of being an immigrant in the voice of four Latinx actresses and how one extraordinary life changing event challenged their status quo. 

“Bro, believe me if you are confused, so am I”

A typical migration story goes, first we try to assimilate as much as we can into the culture we are living in. The goal is to adapt and survive. If you depend on a visa; it is also a visibility issue: the less you expose yourself, the better. This was my impression of the conflict between the characters from the Play “My Uncle is Not Pablo Escobar”. These characters are invisible to society; just  trying to fit in; until an extraordinary event awakens then from that taciturn inaction to work together for the greater good of their communities back home so the events that occurred in the past, don’t happen again. 

A well written and directed play performed by amazing actresses in dynamic rhythm. I could not keep my eyes away from the stage for an hour and a half. Also worth mentioning is how inclusive it was displaying subtitles in English, Spanish, and Portuguese. Latin American stereotypes were discussed from within the community; another example of how Latinx are increasingly contributing  to London’s cultural scene.  

Tell me more!

“My Uncle is Not Pablo Escobar” is a theatre play written by Valentina Andrade, Elizabeth Alvarado, Lucy Way, and Tommy Ross-Williams. A nug shell for the play: four Latinx women risk everything to expose a multinational bank while they confront the audience with creative inserts games about what it means to be both Londoner and Latinx. You can check more information aquí

 

Review by Cristina Martinez

29/06/2023


Joyful Señorita Rita

Review about “Extravaganza Party” at the @thejagodalston. A signature party showcasing Latinx Talent Musicians by @senoritaritauk & @n.e.a_records 

Having no money to do something has never been an excuse for a Latinx to make things happen, and the artists we are writing about today know this first hand.. Being away from home is hard but building a tribe in a foreign city is even more difficult. But, this was overcome by Pepa Duartes and his team during the launch of the Extravaganza Party hosted by “Senorita Rita”.

What it may seem like a Latinx networking at the start of the event soon enough is a welcoming celebration and recognition of citizenship in the same rhythms and bits of vibrant music. Bands such as Alex Etchart ᐩ Vientos, Imperio Bamba, DJ La Contra, and DJ Suma Phayiri, gave the night a special feeling that got the attention of  a private party upstairs that came down to join as couldn’t resist the energy.

This party was also an extraordinary excuse to present the world premiere of “Beautiful Migrant”, a Senorita Rita’s music video that showed the audience the journey of a drag queen arriving to London to become a star. “This character is part of the Senorita Rita’s theatre play, a bio drag queen show defying stereotypical notions about migrant women through comedy, dance, and shamanic rituals”, says @pepaduartes in her Instagram account. You can see the full video on YouTube here. 

That night last April, we were all together under the same flag without political disputes or nostalgic feelings for being away from home. This is the magic of the Latinx people. Can’t wait for the next extravaganza!

Tell me more!

@senoritaritauk is back to London for one night as part of the Calm Down Dear Festival at @camdenpeoplestheatre this next Tuesday 13th of June at 9:00 p.m. Then she will be moving to Sheffield for the Migration Matters Festival 2022 where she will be performing on the Friday 23rd of June. The makeup, design, and details from Pepa Duarte, Senorita Rita’s character, are from @panchouk.  Choreography by @vivi_gabel and Photography by @hectormanchego.   

Review by Cristina Martinez

10/06/2023

 


Eating Myself

***UPDATE***

New UK TOUR DATES. Find out  aquí

“Food is a gift and excuse to be with our love ones”

Comments on “Eating Myself”, solo performance by Pepa Duarte. Peruvian actor, writer, and theatremaker based in London.

Food magically takes us back home evoking memories through its aroma, taste, and the people we share it with. This is precisely what Pepa Duarte, an experienced Peruvian actress, brings to the stage in her play  “Eating myself” ; the ability to make the audience feel like they are part of the family. However, this theatre play is not merely a tale of heritage and family, but an exploration of the perpetual struggle for acceptance and the challenges of being an outsider, particularly as a migrant woman.

Pepa has a clear mission “My goal as an artist is pushing boundaries to make unique, experiential, and challenging pieces responding to the demands of social change. My work responds to reality through vulnerability, commitment, and entertainment. Often exploring the themes of migration, feminism, and tradition. Community, family, belonging”.

As an immigrant living in London, Pepa found herself on a journey: a journey inside herself, to discover experiences of sexism, dieting culture, and gender societal norms. Ultimately, she learned that food could be shared with a new family around a new table. And in her play, you are invited to taste it. 

The work of Pepa is truly exquisite. As she performs on stage, she commands the scenery with such mastery that it’s almost impossible to look away. And to top it off, she cooks while performing, adding yet another layer of talent. At the end of the play, she invites the audience to share the food she’s prepared, creating a truly immersive experience. As a Latin American migrant in London, I felt a strong connection to her story, and it was hard not to burst into tears. 

Tell me more!

Pepa Duarte is a Peruvian actor, writer, and theatremaker based in London. UKNA Selected artist. Award winner (OFFCommendation) for ‘Eating Myself’. Currently working with Old Vic Theatre, Kit Theatre, Tender & Education, and West End in Schools, amongst many other organisations.

***UPDATE***

New UK TOUR DATES. Find out  aquí


I only get to play Manuel

Cristina Martinez’s reflections about Playing Latinx, a theatre play directed by MarianaMalena Theatre, a Latin American female-led theatre company based in London.

Speaking Spanish in an English-speaking country can often be a unique and humorous experience. The pronunciation of certain words may produce easy laughter, and some familiar places may give the impression that one has a deep understanding of Latinx culture. However behind the surface, there is complexity and nuance in a rich cultural background, often marked by historical wounds and struggles. 

Playing Latinx is a story about a newly arrived South American actor, who quickly realises he is destined to be cast to play exotic characters – gigolo, thug, cleaner with a funny accent. He thinks he gets showbiz: he moves, speaks, and writes as a stereotypical Latinx person is expected to act. But as he learns to play the game with increasing success, he questions if his behaviour is perpetuating the stereotype. Is he losing his true identity?

Guido Garcia Lueches’s excellent play was recognised by OffComm and it combines poetry, stand-up comedy and  Latin music while exploring Latin American identity in the UK creative industries and, on a more personal level, how far he will go to fit in.  

“The storyline is based on poems and questions Guido had about their experience as a migrant actor”, states Mariana and Malena who directed Guido in “Playing Latinx. “Although centred around the entertainment industry, the journey of this play slips into everyday life and trickles through any migration experience. Playing Latinx is an invitation to feel uncomfortable, to allow yourself to be politically incorrect and vulnerable, to question, and to have a laugh. We hope it reflects the ability of the Latinx community to come together and celebrate even in adversity”, shared Mariana with Camden People’s Theatre BlogYou can see the trailer aquí

As a Latinx creative, I believe it is crucial to have representation in the industry. Having more Latinx representation in creative spaces across London is not only refreshing but also essential. It allows for more authentic and diverse stories to be told, and for Latinx actors to have the opportunity to interpret any character, not just the ones associated with their cultural background.

It is important to break stereotypes and limitations that have been imposed on Latinx actors for too long. It is time for Latinx actors to have the same opportunities as their non-Latinx counterparts and be able to showcase their versatility and range in their performances. I am eager to be part of this moment and contribute to the industry by being a representative of diverse and authentic stories.

Tell me more!

Guido Garcia Lueches is an Uruguayan theatre-maker and poet specialising in devising performance, who focuses on multiculturalism, identity, and the immigrant experience. He has been performing in the UK since 2015 and is the co-founder of the interactive theatre company Say It Again, Sorry? Playing Latinx is his first one-person show. You can find him on Instagram @elguidogarcia doing some interesting roles in OffWestEnd theatre too. 

Playing Latinx was directed by Mariana Malena, an award-winning Latin American female-led theatre company based in London. Founded by Malena Arcucci (Designer/Director) and Mariana Aritstizábal Pardo (Director/Performer) in 2016, it focuses on creating pieces that explore interdisciplinary and horizontal collaboration between artists. Follow @marianamalenatheatre for more updates. 

By Cristina Martinez

First published 30/04/2022 – Last edited 14/02/2023


Latin Hub UK receives funding from the Mayor of London

‘Aqui Estamos’ Exhibition Project has received £5000 from the Mayor of London’s Untold Stories fund,  part of his Commission for Diversity in the Public Realm.

We want to create a contemporary mosaic mural that celebrates the diverse cultural heritage and contributions of Latin Americans to the UK. Bottom-up co-designing will highlight stories of resilience and success dispelling stereotypes that reduce our contributions to the entertainment and hospitality industries. 

The funding is part of the £1m Untold Stories programme to champion diversity in the capital’s public spaces and ensure London’s landmarks and monuments reflect the achievements of all who have contributed to the success of our city. The grants offer Londoners the opportunity to develop ideas and share their stories which will be represented within the public realm.  

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, established the Commission for Diversity in the Public Realm to improve the representation of Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities, women, LGBTQ+ communities and Deaf and disabled people and those from a range of socio-economic backgrounds in the public realm.

Romina Lopez, Latin Hub Founder said :We are passionate about promoting visibility of our community because that leads to recognition from institutions and increased opportunities. 

ENDS  


Latin Hub increasing visibility of Latin Americans

La comunidad latinoamericana es una de las de más rápido crecimiento en Londres haciendo una contribución esencial al funcionamiento económico, social y cultural de la ciudad. En su prólogo al informe, Paulina Tamborrel, organizadora comunitaria de Citizens UK de México, dijo:

“Nos llaman 'los invisibles', los invisibles. Por todos nuestros colores, sabores y ritmos; Los latinoamericanos esperarían todo antes de la invisibilidad. Estamos orgullosos de nuestra alegría, espíritu musical y voces fuertes. La cruda realidad de ser latinoamericano en el Reino Unido ha hecho de la invisibilidad una nueva costumbre para nuestra comunidad, de la que es difícil escapar ".

Latin Hub UK es una iniciativa independiente, no partidista y sin fines de lucro para apoyar a los latinoamericanos en el Reino Unido y promover nuestra herencia cultural. Nuestro sitio web y canales de redes sociales tienen como objetivo integrar todas las actividades dispersas por y para nuestra comunidad, creando un centro que fortalece nuestra identidad y contribuye a un viaje más amplio hacia la visibilidad y el reconocimiento de una de las comunidades de Londres de más rápido crecimiento pero menos apreciadas.

En línea con estos objetivos, el 9 de octubre exhibimos nuestro trabajo en Southwark Heritage Centre & Library. 

 

Durante nuestro último año, hemos recopilado historias de coraje y resistencia de los comerciantes latinoamericanos que se han visto afectados por la gentrificación, el covid y todas las demás barreras que enfrenta la comunidad.

En la planta baja exhibimos los hermosos cuadros de Desire Noriega, que ilustran el espíritu de nuestras entrevistas orales. 

Fue un gran evento que nos conectó con jóvenes residentes de Southwark también preocupados por cuestiones de gentrificación, así como con la comunidad en general.

 

 

 

El arte puede ser un gran comunicador, pero también acompañamos las pinturas con una sinopsis de la historia que inspiró al artista, contextualizada por los desafíos más amplios que enfrenta la comunidad latinoamericana relacionados con cada historia. También incluimos organizaciones donde los miembros de la comunidad pueden buscar apoyo para una serie de problemas más amplios, desde la violencia doméstica hasta la explotación laboral.

 

 

 

En el primer piso presentamos una experiencia audiovisual, todas las entrevistas de audio fueron animadas con videos de pintura combinados en una película corta que presentaba todas las historias de comerciantes en una serie. Los visitantes pudieron experimentar de primera mano las conmovedoras historias de resiliencia y esperanza.

 

 

 

 

 Al final del evento, un artista local ilustró el día que capturamos en la imagen del video.   

 

¡Un gran agradecimiento a todos los visitantes que fueron tan positivos sobre nuestra exposición y proyecto!


Serrat, Sabina y su historia de amor con América Latina

A fines de la década de 1960 comienza la historia, forzada por el exilio de Juan Manuel Serrat en México. Fue un amor a primera vista entre el cantautor y nuestra gente y cultura.

Para los que crecimos durante los años 70, sus canciones nos han acompañado desde nuestros primeros amores adolescentes, y nos hacen reflexionar sobre dilemas que trascienden fronteras, como la muerte y la libertad. Mediterráneo fue su emblemático primer disco, con el que conocimos la España represiva de Franco, su mar y sus pueblos blancos, sus utopías juveniles.

Luego vinieron sus propias producciones y también musicalizaciones de extraordinarios poetas latinoamericanos. Su obra está influenciada por otros poetas. , Pablo Neruda (Chile), Eduardo Galeano y Mario Benedetti (Uruguay) El sur también existe este es su decimonoveno disco dedicado a los poemas del poeta uruguayo. También ha versionado canciones de Violeta Parra (Chile) , Atahualpa Yupanqui (Argentina) y de Víctor Jara (Chile). Comprometido y crítico con las dictaduras en América Latina, por las que Pinochet le negó la entrada a Chile en 1983.

Joaquín Sabina llegó más tarde a nuestro continente, siguiendo el camino iniciado por Serrat. Nos trajo la locura y los excesos ... y lo amamos por eso. Así como decimos que Juan Manuel trajo la poesía a la música, Joaquín nos dio espontaneidad, rebeldía y humor. Ninguno de los dos se destaca por su talento vocal pero Sabina puede cantar con los mariachis en México o un tango en Buenos Aires con naturalidad. El público perdona esos tragos extra en el escenario y hace oídos sordos al notable paso del tiempo que afecta a ambas voces.

"19 días y 500 noches sigue siendo la canción que más identifica a Sabina, y es Ruido es mi favorito. Mi supuesto fanatismo por Serra me impide elegir una canción esta compilación de canciones y verás que es imposible elegir!

Desde hace unos años actúan juntos, dando conciertos por todo el continente, uniendo música y amistad, entre ellos y su público. El símbolo y el cuate es un documental que cuenta esta historia de amor entre los artistas y América Latina

Fuimos a sus conciertos como a misa, con la misma devoción, el primer concierto de Serrat en Argentina fue inolvidable, después de la dictadura, con pura emoción cantamos “para la libertad, sangro, lucho, pervivo”, con los ojos llenos de lágrimas

Nunca los sentimos como extranjeros, son parte de nuestra historia reciente, en tiempos oscuros,… esperábamos su voz y palabras que nos acompañaban y reconfortaban, cuando la poesía guiaba la música y la música nos hacía pensar. … ..

Autor: Angelines Yakin