Friday, April 17, 2015

WordFest. Big Read. Northside. REFORMA. Pancho.


Press Release from Su Teatro


DENVER, CO – Su Teatro will present their FirstEver WordFest April 20-26, a week-long festival dedicated to promoting a deeper appreciation of the written word and showcasing world-class writers and artists. Su Teatro’s FirstEver WordFest is the start of an annual vanguard event that will nurture artistic expression and connect our community with incredible Latino voices. The FirstEver WordFest details can be viewed at Tickets are $10 general, $7 students/seniors with group discounts available. All events will take place at Su Teatro Cultural and Performing Arts Center, 721 Santa Fe Dr. Denver, CO 80204. The complete schedule for Su Teatro’s FirstEver WordFest may be viewed at, or call 303-296-0219 for more information.

Jimmy Santiago Baca

Acclaimed Poet Jimmy Santiago Baca to Open Festival

The FirstEver WordFest begins with award-winning poet from New Mexico, Jimmy Santiago Baca. Baca, a self-taught and talented writer, found his passion in poetry while incarcerated in federal prison. His works include A Place To Stand and a new book of poems Singing at the Gates. He writes about oppression, love and migration, and his poems range from a few lines to many pages. Baca is the recipient of numerous awards including the Pushcart Prize, American Book Award, and the International Hispanic Heritage Award. He will present his new film and will be available to sign books, April 20th at 7:30 pm.

Coming to Denver from San Pablo, California, Carlos Manuel presents La Vida Loca, an apolitical in-your-face odyssey of a Mexican Immigrant. La Vida Loca is stuffed full with life and is carefully constructed to both give hero status and to expose the author/performer to his audiences. His “crazy” life is revealed through an equally crazy quilt of carefully crafted memories, fantasies, dialogues, and excerpts from pop culture. The most recent awards received by Carlos Manuel include the Piper Scholars Playwriting Award and Anna Rozenzweig Memorial Theatre Award. See La Vida Loca on Thursday, April 23rd and Saturday, April 25th at 7:30 pm.

On Friday, April 24th and Sunday, April 26th see visiting artist Ruben C. Gonzalez, with La Esquinita: USA, a one-man work and “socio/spiritual theatre for a new age.” La Esquinita is an imaginary financially depressed town…think Anywhere, USA…it is peopled with eleven quirky characters from the barrio, male and female, aged and youthful, all seeking identity, connection and peace. 

Local Artists Shine

Nationally acclaimed poet and spoken word artist, Bobby LeFebre, adds “playwright” to his resume with Northside a contemporary and historical perspective of the gentrification of Denver’s Northside. He counter poses an emerging Chicano middle class torn between tradition and opportunity. Northside cuts, critiques and cleanses with flowing words and passionate insight. The reading will be performed by Su Teatro company members. Northside will be presented on Tuesday, April 21st at 7:30 pm.

Maria Cheng

Maria Cheng, founder of the local pan-Asian theatre company, Theatre Esprit Asia, presents Spirit and Sworded Treks. Ms. Cheng is the writer, director and performer of the piece in which she brings together tai-ji forms, storytelling, stir-fry cooking, and stand-up comedy to demonstrate the spiritual difficulties that Chinese-American women face. Beheaded Barbie dolls may or may not also be involved. Spirit and Sworded Treks can be seen on Thursday, April 23rd and Saturday, April 25th.

Su Teatro actors present a reading of Dr. Al Ramirez’ family inspired musical “Remember the Alamo. This multi-generational story revisits the iconic symbol of US expansionism and is a national testimony to historical spin. The Ramirez family pre-dates the Alamo and the so-called Texas revolution. Their story places them directly in the middle of American history and carves a statement of Mexican-American identity and participation. Remember the Alamo will be presented on Wednesday, April 22nd at 7:30 pm.

Boulder based MOTUS Theater presents Do You Know Who I Am? the acclaimed new performance encouraging discussion on immigration in Colorado. Scripted by Kirsten Wilson based on monologues written and performed by Juan Juarez, Victor Galvan, Oscar Juarez, Ana Cristina Temu and Hugo Juarez. This presentation will be held on Sunday, April 26th at 7:30 pm.

The FirstEver WordFest happens April 20-26. The lineup is available at Tickets are $10 general and $7 students/seniors with group discounts available.

Celebrate the written word and its vital place in Latino culture


Cut Along The Line: An Evening of Readings in Conjunction with The Big Read

Saturday, April 18 | 7:00pm (doors open at 6:30) | Reception with the poets to follow reading | Free
In celebration of Luis Alberto Urrea's novel Into The Beautiful North, writer Marisela Norte brings together writers Luis Alfaro, Kenji Liu, and Melinda Palacio for a reading of poetry and prose on the immigrant imagination, erasing borders, and the great divide. The Big Read is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest. More information can be found at
The Big Read Logo Gray

RSVP requested to  

Craft and Folk Art Museum
5814 Wilshire Boulevard | Los Angeles, CA 90036 | Tel 323.937.4230 | |


[from Westword interview with Bobby LeFebre]

For his first endeavor as a playwright, poet, actor and activist, Bobby LeFebre wanted to tackle a sensitive subject that hit close to home: the changing face of the Denver neighborhood in which he grew up. In Northside, LeFebre explores the complex issues facing new and old residents in a part of the city that is currently experiencing massive socioeconomic shifts; the play tells the story of three couples as they deal with the Denver real-estate market and the underlying issues of race relations, gentrification and economic status. A staged reading of Northside next Tuesday, April 21 — when actors will read from a script on a bare stage at Su Teatro — will be followed by a talk-back to get audience feedback that will help shape the final theatrical product.   Read the entire article and interview at this link.

The public reading of Northside starts at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 21 at Su Teatro, 721 Santa Fe Drive; a talk-back session will follow. For tickets, $10, and more information, visit Su Teatro's website or call 303-296-0219.

The 2015 REFORMA Colorado Mini-Conference will be on Friday May 1st, 2015 at the Denver Public Library B2 Conference Center from 1-5pm. The theme, as always, is about serving Latinos and Spanish Speakers.

Spotlight Events

Jesse_UlibarriSenator Jessie Ulibarri will deliver the keynote. In addition to being an outspoken champion of immigrant rights, Senator Ulibarri is also is a big fan of libraries (his mother is a librarian, so he’s Family). 

manuel ramosmario acevedoAuthors Mario Acevedo and Manuel Ramos will team up for “Northside Noir” to discuss their experiences, surprises and tribulations as award-winning and best-selling Chicano writers who draw inspiration from one of Denver’s oldest Chicano neighborhoods.



Cost and Registration 

Onsite registration will be available starting at 12:30 on the day of the conference (May 1st) in the B2 foyer of the Central Denver Public Library.

Here's the schedule for the conference.  Click on the image for a larger version.


Join me at the Broadway Book Mall, 200 S. Broadway, Denver on April 25 at 3:00 pm as I discuss and read from my new collection of short stories, The Skull of Pancho Villa and Other Stories.  Scotch and other goodies are planned.


No comments: