Teatro Jornalero Sin Fronteras makes common cause with the Imaginists
TJSF is currently developing its first full-length play, Caminos al Paraíso (Paths to Paradise), written by Mangandi and directed by Moran. This exchange in Santa Rosa, made possible by a grant from the Network of Ensemble Theaters, has offered TJSF members the opportunity to learn important technical aspects of crafting a full evening's production from their more experienced colleagues. At the same time, it's offered the Imaginists, which has grown into a bilingual company since rooting itself in Santa Rosa, a chance to advance its own mission through contact with a deeply community-driven Latino theater. But neither motive really captures the personal ties and mutual respect that have been forming here, the subtle and profound reciprocity of influence, and the solidarity emerging from it all.
"TJSF is a brave, important theater company that is telling stories that we don't usually hear," reflected Pinto by email. "Coming together for a week, we were able to strengthen our own resolve to tell these stories, not to be afraid of being deemed 'political.' For the Latino members of the Imaginists, the exchange was a catalyst to be empowered by their histories and stories. This exchange reinforced how necessary it is to have comrades, to share experiences and methods, to have a network of support throughout the country for this work."
The Imaginists plan to travel to Los Angeles for another face-to-face meeting with TJSF over next steps. Together they hope to develop something that can tour to labor centers across the country.
In the meantime, inspired by the exchange, the Imaginists are concocting a new play, based on a famous children's story, which will address the plight of undocumented people. Working title: REAL. *
For an extended version of this story, visit www.sfbg.com/pixel_vision.