Friday, July 29, 2011

Report on HOLA After The Curtain/HOLA Después Del Telón: BROWNSVILLE BRED

On Thursday, July 28, 2011, HOLA presented its second HOLA After The Curtain/HOLA Después Del Telón event, a series of post-performance discussions. This particular incarnation was for the off-Broadway production Brownsville Bred. Written and performed by Elaine Del Valle, the solo show was directed by Pamela Moller Kareman, and produced by The Schoolhouse Theater, Theater 808 and Al Eskanazy Productions. The show and the HOLA event took place at 59E59 Theaters in Manhattan's East Side. Mario Bósquez served as moderator.

Before a packed house, Bósquez spoke with Moller Kareman and Del Valle regarding the autobiographical show and how it came to fruition. The discussion was lively and funny, although it became poignant at times. In the audience was one of Del Valle's elementary school teachers, a teacher from the school where her late father (who figures prominently in the play) worked and the son of an old boyfriend of Del Valle's mother. Tears were shed when a gentleman in the audience who was also from Del Valle's old neighborhood (Brownsville, Brooklyn) mentioned that her father's spirit lives on in him because he learned to play the conga through him. The gentleman now plays percussion for the band Alma Moyo. He came up to the stage and they shared an embrace which made the room erupt with applause.

The discussion was one of four talkbacks affiliated with the production. According to Del Valle, "it was the best talkback that she had ever had [with the production]. Mario [Bósquez] is amazing and I think that HOLA (even before last night) has been better than ever before and I am proud to be a member!"

Bósquez, for his part, also reciprocated the love: "It was a wonderful experience to be a part of this. You guys are amazing and [Elaine Del Valle] is absolutely riveting in this show...."

Photos of the event were taken by Anthony Ruiz of ARuiz Photography (click on each to see them bigger). More photos of the event can be seen by clicking here.

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