| October 20, 2011 | 9:00am
Support the independent voice of Phoenix and help keep the future of New Times free.
People jumping fences in the middle of the night. Armed Border Patrol agents driving along a long, metal fence. Minute-men sitting in lawn chairs staring out at a vast desert landscape.
These are the images we think of when we hear the word "border" -- and that's what the new multi-discinplinary play AMEXICA: Tales of the Fourth World
will work to disprove.
"It's always struck me that our perspective, especially in the United States, of the border is extremely two-dimensional," says James E. Garcia
, the longtime Arizona journalist and playwright who co-wrote the play with poet Alberto Alvaro Rios
. It's a very narrow and negative one, he says, when, in fact, the border region is anything but.
The show, which premieres at the Mesa Arts Center
on Saturday night, tells the story of an aspiring poet who goes on a journey to find his roots in a Nogales orphanage. He travels from San Diego Bay to the Gulf of Mexico to discover a region that Garcia says has a culture all its own.
Garcia, who has lived on the border and still has family there, says there are 14 million people living in the border region. "And if it keeps growing at the rate that it is, it'll soon have a population the size of California in the next generation," he says. "It will influence the culture to the North and to the South."
The show, directed by Dr. Barbara Acker, features music by hip hop/Latin composer Quetzal Guerrero
and choreography by Michele Ceballos, founder of Opendance
-- not to mention the poetry of Garcia's co-author, Alvaro Rios, a Regent's Professor at ASU who grew up in the border town of Nogales, Arizona.
premieres on Saturday, October 22 and runs on weekends until November 6. Tickets are available on-line here
for $20 a piece.
Follow Jackalope Ranch on Facebook and Twitter.
Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.