Nemcatacoa Teatro and VerboBala come to Ajo

Oct 4, 2013 by Andrew Sisk

It’s hard not to look up to someone wearing stilts. And when it comes to the stilt-walking street theater group known as Nemcatacoa Teatro, folks around the country are looking up in admiration to their spectacular performances all through their 2013 U.S. tour, which has taken them to cities across the country such as San Francisco, New York, and soon, Ajo, Arizona.

This theater ensemble from Bogata, Colombia is coming to Ajo to present the “Landscape Re-invention Society”, a mobile street display wherein costumed and painted human figures wearing three-foot-long stilts dance and move through unique architectural spaces they encounter at the locations where they perform. In Ajo, they will be performing amidst the domes and arches of the historic downtown Plaza during the town’s monthly “Under the Arches” celebration.

Nemcatacoa Teatro’s touring appearances give a unique show in each venue, because they use the particular public environment they encounter at each new performance location as an integral component of their pieces. That means the performance in Ajo will be one-of-a-kind, as is each exhibition on their tour. If you are in Ajo on October 13, it should not be missed.

Nemcatacoa Teatro will be joined at this event by the live poetry performance group VerboBala, which originated in Cuernavaca, Mexico, and is now based in Tucson. VerboBala’s artwork explores borderland identity through storytelling and digital media. Their presentation includes bilingual poetry, live video projection and sound design. The name VerboBala translates in English as “Bullet-Verb”. They have performed for audiences in New York and Mexico City, among other cities. But because their art is partly inspired by the culture of national borderlands, this upcoming performance is especially relevant in the small town of Ajo, a U.S./Mexico border town.

The Under the Arches celebration in Ajo is a monthly event sponsored by Ajo’s Plaza Merchants’ Association. It was created to give visitors and locals alike an opportunity to enjoy lively gatherings in one of the town’s most pleasing public spaces, and to see the recent economic development happening there in the form of small, independently owned businesses which have taken root. Ajo has seen many changes over its life, but its central Plaza, at least the exterior architecture, has endured practically since the beginning.

Ajo’s borderland location, small size, and classic town center, combined with the vision of these two artistic groups, will make this a very special event.

The festivities begin at 4:30 p.m., on Sunday, October 13th in the Ajo plaza, and are scheduled to last until 7:30 p.m. The admission is free. For more information about the town of Ajo, or the Under the Arches event, call the Ajo Chamber of Commerce, at (520) 387-7742. More information about the artists can be found by going to their websites: nemcatacoateatro.org, and verbobala.com, and by going to the Facebook page “Ajo Plaza”.

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