Currently running until August 11th at Casa 0101
Reviewed by Bel Hernandez
Just when you think you’re watching a slapstick stage production of the Hollywood film Grumpy Old Men, you realize you are actually watching Trio Los Machos, currently playing at Casa 0101 until August 11th. The story revolves around three old musician who have lost their mojo. The play flashes back to the indignities they suffered during the U.S. Bracero program in the 1940’s. It’s funny, but as the laughter stops and you can hear a pin drop.
Trio Los Machos is written by Josefina Lopez who is also the Founding Artistic Director of Casa 0101, as homage her father and the famous Trio Los Panchos, an internationally famous Latin trio known for its romantic ballads and boleros. Lopez uses the Bracero Program, a program put in place by the Mexican and American governments that called for the importation of temporary contract laborers from Mexico to the United States, then deported en masse in the 1930’s.
The “trio” of friends are played by Henry Madrid (Paco), Miguel Santana (Lalo) and Roberto Garza (Nacho) with their younger versions played by Cesar Solorzano (Young Paco), Estuardo Munoz (young Lalo) and Joshua Duron (young Nacho). The actors all do a good job or endearing the audience to their characters. With Edward Padilla’s fine direction and Lopez’s powerful writing, all the elements come together to make for one funny, touching and at times impactful production.
At the end of the play not only have you taken a trip down memory lane, listening to Trio Los Panchos classics sprinkled throughout the play like El Reloj, Sabor a Mi, Sin Ti (and an original Corrido El Bracero written specifically for the production by Lopez and composed by Danny Weinstein), but you have a better understanding of the life traveled by these three friends.
In spite of the injustices, struggle and mistreatments they suffered as braceros, it was that part of their lives that propelled them together into a friendship, that in the end would survive poverty, jealousy, women problems, secrets and lead them to the end when they face a life threatening incident which tests their bond.
If you love to laugh, cry and listen to beautiful boleros (with guitarist Jesus Martinez and Marco Aguirre) and singing, by the beautiful Rocio Mendoza who plays Aurelia the woman that came between the friends, then you will love Trio Los Machos. But hurry because this production is truly back by popular demand and the tickets are scarce.
Trio Los Machos will touch your heart and lift your soul. Don’t miss it.
A Free Art Exhibit in The Jean Deleage Gallery at Casa 0101 Theater entitled, “Recollections From Yesterday and Today of Ex-Braceros,” will be running in conjunction with the run of the play, Trío Los Machos. The photography exhibit will include work of former “guest workers” who participated in the United States/Mexican government program granting temporary work contracts to Mexican laborers from 1942 – 1964. The Art Exhibit is sponsored by the Binacional Union of Ex-Braceros, 1942 – 1967.
New Casa 0101 Theater, 2102 E. First Street (at Louis Street), Boyle Heights, CA 90033.
The play will be presented on Fridays and Saturdays at 8:00 p.m. and Sundays at 5:00 p.m. Discounted Previews will be presented July 12, 13 and 14, 2013, followed by a four-week run of the play from July 19 – August 11, 2013.
Tickets for the four-week run of the play from July 19 – August 11, 2013 are $20 for General Admission, $17 for Students, Seniors and Groups of 10 or more, and $15 for Boyle Heights residents with identification. For tickets, please call the Casa 0101 Theater Box Office at 323-263-7684, E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or buy online at www.casa0101.org.
Advance reservations are highly recommended. Theatre patrons can get a $2 discount by presenting their Metro Bus Cards at the Box Office when buying tickets. Metro bus stations are located on First Street in Boyle Heights at both Soto Street, and at Boyle Street (Mariachi Plaza), within a short walking distance to the theatre.