November 6, 2017
After Teatro Línea de Sombra (Mexico) came to Madison for a workshop and to perform Baños Roma in October, 2017, a number of students and faculty made the trip to Chicago to see their staging of Amarillo. It was a fortuitous chance to glimpse an expanded view of the group’s dynamic practice. As a given work is staged, objects, ancillary projections, and sometimes even actors change along with the delicate resonances each create with the themes of the work. It was interesting, then, that what struck us most was how relevant a work centered on geopolitical conflict remained searingly relevant eight years after its debut. On the ride back and in class (Spanish 564: Professor Hernández’s Theatre and Performance seminar), we talked about issues that had only been left behind in our initial, digital viewing of the work: about the physical toll on the actors; about how to engage an audience; about how to foster an audience’s empathy while acknowledging their distance from a lived experience; about violence and memory and citizenship. This was a great convivial experience!