00034: Teatro en CDMX
Every time I go to Mexico City, I go to the theatre. There are two main reasons: 1) I’m a theatre artists and 2) my late friend Luis and I loved going to see shows all over the capital.
The last time my husband and I were in Mexico City, Luis took us to the theatre several times during our two-week visit. I want to write about that experience because it felt as if the three of us were attending a theatre festival. Usually in our visits, we saw one or two theatre productions per week, but the last time we visited, we saw seven different shows in the span of two weeks, which literately means we almost went to the theatre every other day.
This happened in the summer of 2019, none of us knew that would be the last time Luis, Miguel and I would be together enjoying one of the most satisfying habits of our lives: theatre. I feel the need to talk about the importance of going to the theatre with my late friend Luis. I will do that in another post. Today I want to talk about the last shows we saw together because, even though they happened almost two years ago, it was one of the two main intentions I set up to complete. If you want to know what I’m talking about, please read the entry, “00029: Intentions.”
La Roña Enamorhada (Reloaded) is a one-person show where the actor and comedian Dario T. Pie plays a satirized version of “La Doña.” La Doña is the nickname given to a very famous and respectable actress known as María Felix. She was a tough, no non-sense type of individual who always put everyone in its place. Anyway, the play La Roña is a satire about life and mainly about things happening in the Mexican country. It has a storyline but it also is very improvised. The night that we went, the show lasted almost two and a half hours, but only the first hour and 15 minutes were good. The rest were a waste of time. The actor who plays La Roña is incredible, but I think he’s also such a diva that he does what he wants, and that keeps him from being an excellent theatre artist. He’s good but his diva attitude stains his art.
12 Princesas en Pugna is a show, as the title says, about 12 Disney Princesses who are in disagreement. This play is a satire and it has no filter in terms of political correctness. The show is like a group of bitchy people getting together to talk about others, and themselves, and to betray each other. Is it funny? No. It is hilarious and it is very on point about the way “Disney” portrays “white princesses” vs. “princesses of color.” I was laughing so hard, my stomach hurt, and I was also crying from so much laughter. Again, one needs to understand that political correctness is out the window here, and as long as you are willing to enjoy the 90 minutes of this bitchy fest, you will have a great time.
Extraños en un tren is based on Alfred Hitchcock’s psychological thriller film Strangers on a Train. I wanted to see this show because the main actor, Alejandro Camacho, is an actor I had admired since childhood when I saw him in the soap opera “Cuna de Lobos.” Having the opportunity to see him on stage was a great privilege.
This show surpassed my expectations, from the acting and directing to the set. the costumes, and the lighting. Both, the artistic and technical elements were superb and made for a great evening of theatre. After the show, there was a Q&A session, which was so enjoyable and the cherry on top of such a professional production.
Dorian Gray, The Musical. This musical was so much fun to watch, not because it was a great production but because it was the campiest shit I’ve ever seen. The main actor, who is about five feet tall, understands the importance of stage presence and he made sure he was noticed. His entrances and exits were always grand and loud in the campiest way possible. The actor is the son of two other actors who I will mention later. Trust me, this guy has the energy and stage presence of his mother and the camp and bitchiness of his father. I truly enjoyed this show, and so did my husband. Dorian Gray is supposed to be a tragedy, a cautionary tale. This musical was exactly that and more. The only thing it was missing was drag queens!
Mentiras, The Musical is, to me, the best musical theatre created by Mexican artists. It is clear the producers understand theatricality and everyone involved in the technical aspects of the show understands the importance of precision. The actors did a good job, except for the actress playing the main role. While she was good in the acting part, when singing, she played to the audience all the time and broke character several times when people called her name. I enjoyed the show and I love the show, I just thought the main actress was a diva that did everything her way and “step out” of her role as part of the ensemble, for this show is an ensemble piece and this particular actress seemed to be fighting with everyone on stage to have the audience attention at all times. Still, I like the production. In fact, I saw it a second time, with a different actress playing the main character and whoa! What a difference! Mentiras, The Musical is celebrating a 10-year anniversary this month and there will be a special showing online. Guess who has tickets? That’s right! I do and I cannot wait to see it.
When Luis and I were walking in a certain part of the city we saw a giant poster announcing the one-woman show Gorda ¿Yo?, we couldn’t stop laughing because the title is all about being fat and in show business. The show is also about accepting your fatness while navigating the prejudice, disadvantages, and discrimination fat people endured every day.
The show is written and performed by Lupita Sandoval, who was a famous TV star but left show business because of the abused she had to endure due to her weight. Lupita is also the mother of the actor who plays Dorian Gray.
The 90-minute show was not only a story about a famous actress but also about the tribulations of fat person, all through singing, dancing, and with the best comedy I’ve heard in a long time. In fact, after the show, Miguel, Luis, and I waited to take a picture with Ms. Sandoval, who, even after her show, was still full of energy and enthusiasm.
The last show I’m going to mention here is Y llegaron las brujas!, which was Luis favorite show of all times. The show is about four witches who must come together to initiate the daughter of one of them, who is turning 21 and thus become a witch herself. The show, has three great things in its favor: 1) The witches are play by men so the show is very campy, 2) The show has musical numbers (even though is not a musical) and the lyrics are clever, dirty, and funny, 3) Although the show has a great storyline and there is set dialogue, the show depends on a lot of improvisation based on the audience that is attending and how they are reacting to it. So, in this show, no one is safe from being ridicule at some point of another.
The main character is played by Fred Roldán, who is the father of the actor who played Dorian Gray, which means Fred and Lupita were a married couple sometime in their lives but now they are separated… why? Because Mr. Roldán is gay. I do not know if the other actors are gay, it doesn’t really matter but I do mention it because if they are, their acting is incredible and they know how to play with the audience while being bitchy and nice, a perfect combination for this type of show.
When we attended, Mr. Roldán, as the main witch, saw us laughing so hard at some point during the show that he stopped, looked at us and said, “I didn’t know fairy tales were real but look, the three little pigs are laughing.” Now, understand that the three little pigs in Spanish is “Los tres cochinitos,” there is no “little” in their name. So, when someone refers to you as “three three pigs,” well, they are telling you are fat. That bitch called us fat! And we just kept on laughing to the point that two of the witches came and sat next to us in order to continue making fun of us… the bitches!
After the show, Luis, Miguel and I paid to take our picture with the witches. We talked for a few minutes and then we say our good-byes. Who would have thought that would be the last show Luis, Miguel, and I would see together. But I will talk about this in another post. For now, I have fulfilled my second intention and I am grateful I have been able to follow through at last. #carlosmanuelspeaksthetruth