Rubén C. González’s powerful, poetic play about love, forgiveness and ultimate redemption connects 10 people left behind in their little corner of the world to struggle with eternal human relationships in the acclaimed “La Esquinita, USA” at the Herberger Theater Center in Phoenix Feb. 9-26. The 2016-17 season is sponsored by I. Michael and Beth Kasser.
An Arizona premiere from the famed El Teatro Campesino and directed by its Producing Artistic Director Kinan Valdez, “La Esquinita, USA” tells the story of people seeking identity, connection and peace.
What happens to a small border town when big promises from big business are broken? At a bus stop on the 40A Red Line, in cross-cultural hip-hop fueled language at once poetic and powerful, González, one of the Southwest’s premier Mexican-American writer/performers, presents a tour-de-force of interlocking stories: 10 characters on a passage through a once-booming town, now forgotten.
The main source of employment in town, the Thompson Tire Factory, has gone overseas, leaving the town’s infrastructure in disarray. Told by the wise, omniscient custodian, Lencho, and experienced through the eyes of 18-year-old Daniel, “La Esquinita, USA” connects the disparate stories of those left behind – of the people we, as a society, systematically choose to avoid – into a captivating new American narrative of self-identity, unity, and peace.
“La Esquinita, USA” is a virtuoso solo performance – a gorgeous, brave story of love, forgiveness, and ultimate redemption.
“Rubén C. González shape-shifts lives like el gato in his many-hued kaleidoscope of the imagination,” Alexandra Bonifield wrote in Theatre Jones. “His live stage art is transcendent, exhilarating in its simplicity, yet full of emotional depth. … (His) adeptness at lightning-fast transitions from one character to another, never losing a beat or dropping a line or the story’s thread, and inhabiting each character with a full stage role’s dedication, is a marvel to behold.”
González, who trained at the London Academy for Performing Arts and Circle in the Square Theatre School in New York City, created “La Esquinita, USA” under El Teatro Campesino’s New Work’s Lab and it was included as part of Encuentro 2014, the largest Latino theatre arts festival in the United States.
“La Esquinita, USA” is performed in English and contains mature language and subject matter.
Ticket prices are $30-$75 and are available in person at the Herberger Theater Center, 222 E. Monroe St., by calling 602-256-6995, or online at www.arizonatheatre.org.