This bilingual, cross-border, cross-genre opera about the enigmatic general, legendary bandit and hero of the Mexican Revolution presents a non-linear collage of scenes from, or inspired by, his life. Six musicians—playing keyboards, drums, violin, cello, electric guitar and bass/tuba—accompany two singers, who in turn are aided by both pre-recorded and live video images, frequently overlaid.
Originally commissioned by Ballroom Marfa, this award-winning project brings together an impressive array of artistic collaborators from both sides of the Rio Grande, including Austin-based composer Graham Reynolds and librettists Lagartijas Tiradas al Sol of Mexico City. Melding an avant-garde aesthetic with political overtones and a blend of Tejano and Mexican music, the piece provides a timely focus on the relationships and overlaps between the communities of Mexico and the US, as well as the borderlands in between.
Sonically traverses both Mexican and American perspectives to reveal intersections and conflicts, and create a borderless dialogue about the shared histories of Mexico and the United States. —Film Music Daily
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COMPOSER Graham Reynolds LIBRETTO Lagartijas Tiradas al Sol (Luisa Pardo & Gabino Rodríguez) DIRECTOR Shawn Sides MEZZO-SOPRANO Liz Cass TENOR Paul Sanchez DRUMS Jeremy Bruch VIOLIN Alexis Buffum CELLO Henna Chou BASS, TUBA Utah Hamrick GUITAR Adrian Quesada KEYBOARDS Graham Reynolds EL TIGRE Miguel Santiago Santos MUSIC REMIXING AND CONSULTATION Toy Selectah ADDITIONAL LYRICS Carrie Fountain LIGHTING AND SCENIC DESIGNER Brian Scott COSTUME DESIGNER Christine Crook VIDEO DESIGNER Robert S. Fischer SOUND ENGINEER Gory Smelley PRODUCTION AND STAGE MANAGER Dallas Tate PRODUCER David Lobel TRANSLATIONS Tomás Morín ADDITIONAL TRANSLATIONS Antonio Ruiz-Camacho INITIAL TRANSLATION ASSISTANCE David Rios, Michi Runyon, David Lobel DRAMATURG, DIALECT COACH, ADDITIONAL TRANSLATIONS Luis Armando Ordaz Gutiérrez DRAMATURG Mallory Catlett VIDEOGRAPHY Lagartijas Tiradas al Sol VIDEO PHOTOGRAPHY Fernando Pardo VIDEO EDITOR Jeremy Bruch PHOTO EDITOR Buzz Moran TRIPTYCH GRAPHIC DESIGN Noel Waggener MUSIC CONSULTATION Alex E. Chavez MUSIC RESEARCH AND CONSULTATION Luis Urías Hermosillo ORIGINALLY COMMISSIONED BY Ballroom Marfa CO-COMMISSIONED BY Fusebox Festival ADDITIONAL SUPPORT PROVIDED BY National Performance Network, Golden Hornet FUNDED BY US Artists International, a program of MidAtlantic Arts Foundation in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation