Essential Culture: Weekend of June 22, 2012

What to watch, read and enjoy this weekend in Latino USA.


“Trio Los Machos” at CASA 0101 (Boyle Heights, California)

This play stars the tale of three musicians who tell the tale of their migration as part of the 1940s Bracero Program. And the play’s title? It takes its name from music group trio, who narrate the play’s dialogue through traditional Mexican ballads.

“Black n Blue Boys/Broken Men” at the Berkeley Repertory Theatre (Berkeley, California)

Flaco seems like just another Puerto Rican kid in New York City, but there’s more to him than meets the eye in this play about the growing pains of boyhood.

Museums & Art Exhibits

Leo Villareal at the Conner Contemporary Art Gallery (Washington, D.C.)

Light – as a concept and a vision – is the subject of this riveting exhibit by artist Leo Villareal now aglow at the Conner Contemporary Art Gallery.

“Lourdes Portillo: La Cineasta Inquisitiva” at the New York Museum of Modern Art (New York, New York)

Screenwriter and filmmaker Lourdes Portillo uses her Mexican heritage as a lense to examine Latin American experiences both domestic and international and is the subject of a riveting exhibit opening this Friday at the MoMA.


“Brave” (opens in theaters nationwide Friday)

Pixar’s newest animated release may be about a Scottish heroine who bravely sets out to find her path through life, but it’s thanks to stimulation technical director Edgar Rodriguez that she’s able to look great by doing so. Read our interview with the Puerto Rican technical artist here.

“To Rome with Love” (opens in theaters nationwide Friday)

Starring Penelope Cruz, this Woody Allen flick is about the predicaments people can get into when they find themselves in Italy’s treasured city.

Books & Literary Events

 “Beyond the Ties of Blood” by Florencia Mallon (Pegasus Books)

This riveting novel offers a deeply reflective narrative about Chile’s 1973 military coup in a stunning, unique way. Will main character Eugenia Adulante find the resolution she needs to move past her traumatic war time experiences? It’s the type of novel that’s a deeply engaging read. Check out our interview with author Florencia Mallon here.

“Historias! An Intergenerational Conversation On Latino Literature” at Fordham University (Bronx, New York)

Join featured authors Linda Nieves-Powell, Ivan Sanchez, Charlie Vázquez and others at this event celebrating New York’s Latino literary scene.


Cerronato- Colombian Vallenato and Cumbia Night (Austin, TX)

Cumbia flavored with Colombian spice is the attraction at this fun concert presented by Esquina Tango, the Cultural Society of Austin.

Latin Jazz Concert (Oak Park, Illinois)

Start off the weekend with the exciting beats of Brazilian and Cuban jazz combos in concert Friday and stick around afterwards, where there will be a salsa dance class.

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