Written by Dañel Malán
An original, bilingual Teatro Milagro production
Swept up in an immigration raid and deported to Mexico, Rio, Luz and Sal are suddenly immersed into indigenous prophecies surrounding B’aktun 13, the final era in the Mayan calendar. In the Yucatán, they encounter Mayan deities Ixchel, goddess of water and moon, and Ahpuch, god of death, who lead the trio deeper into a mythological universe. Time revolves like a Mayan calendar as each must face the consequences of their pasts. When the end of the era of B’aktun 13 arrives on December 21, 2012, will the world change? Or will they?
B’aktun 13 is a participating production of the 2012 Fertile Ground festival of new works (www.fertilegroundpdx.org). After its two-week run in Portland, B’aktun 13 will go on tour to schools, colleges and universities around the country. The scenery and props are intentionally minimalistic for flexible performance venues and non-traditional performance spaces.
REVIEWS & COMMENTS
Emilee Booher, Willamette Week
“B’aktun 13”, a bilingual Miracle Theatre production written by Portland playwright Dañel Malán, explores the prediction that a drastic world shift will take place when the Mayan long count calendar comes to an end on Dec. 21, 2012. While the spiritual side of the ancient prophecy fills plenty of space along the plotline, Malán also ties in contemporary issues of immigration, assimilation and identity that hit even more powerfully and poignantly than the thought of a world that may be no more. Themes of acceptance and unification unfold to remedy the impending doomsday through a narrative of three main characters after they are deported from the U.S. to Mexico. In this case, the passing of the 13th B’aktun doesn’t necessarily mean the end. Instead, it marks the breakdown of borders and the beginning of a new understanding of social constructions and the natural world.
ABOUT THE DIRECTOR
Matthew B. Zrebski is a multi-award winning playwright, composer, script consultant, and producer-director from Austin, Texas. He has served as the Artistic Director for Youth Could Know Theatre, Theatre Atlantis, and Stark Raving Theatre. He has mounted over 40 world premieres and has had many of his own plays produced, including the planet ME, Neck, A Place Called Timothy, Parts, After the Zipper, Darkstep and Dawning, The Vespiary, Ablaze, Hunter in the Corner, The Aquavarian, Handprint Alley, and Rubber 'n' Glue. Matthew teaches playwriting through the Literary Arts WITS program as well as for Visions and Voices at Portland Center Stage. He is also an occasional guest professor at Pacific University.
Malán, Teatro Milagro Artistic Director
Ms. Malán co-founded the Miracle Theatre Group with her husband, José Eduardo González, and in 1989 she created the bilingual touring program, Teatro Milagro. Under her artistic direction, Ms. Malán has created and produced many original bilingual plays, a bilingual residency program Puentes(Bridges) and the BEAT (Bilingual Educator Arts Training) conducted in collaboration with arts groups and school districts throughout Oregon. Additionally, Ms. Malán has designed and edited an annual bilingual workbook for teachers that follows the thematic units of the Puentes residency program, which includes environmental education, anti-bullying curriculum, social justice theatre and countless writing, visual arts and crafts projects. For over 20 years, Teatro Milagro has provided opportunities for ethnic artists whose voices might not otherwise be heard. The playwrights, directors and actors involved have included artists from Mexico, Colombia, Honduras, Ecuador, Guam, Puerto Rico and the U.S. In addition to producing plays and educational residencies, Ms. Malán also manages the tour that has traveled not only throughout Oregon, but also to Washington, California, Idaho, Montana, Illinois, Missouri, Massachusetts, Michigan, Rhode Island, Pennsylvania, Wyoming, New Mexico, Texas, New York, Mexico and Canada.
On tour through November 2012
The matinee of “B’aktun 13” on Saturday, Jan. 21 will be accompanied by a free resource fair featuring an open mic readers theatre led by Los Porteños writers group; environmental activities, such as group papermaking, and representatives from VOZ, Union Verde, and others. Plus, a very special selection of books for purchase from Powell’s Books related to community and environmental responsibility, immigration issues and Mayan culture.
The fair will be open for one hour before the matinee of “B’aktun 13” (from 1 to 2 p.m.) as well as after the performance from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. in the Zócalo adjacent to the lobby of Milagro Theatre (525 SE Stark St., Portland). Tickets are required for the play, but entrance to the resource fair is free and open to the public, courtesy of Teatro Milagro and its community partners.
The 2012 tour of B'AKTUN 13 and its accompanying “Unidad” activities is made possible in part by support from the
Oregon Arts Commission
Juan Young Trust
Ventura Group, Inc.
Tricia Castañeda-Gonzales … Luz
Dañel Malán … Ixchel and Ahpuch
Daniel Moreno … Rio
Ajai Terrazas-Tripathi … Sal
Matthew B. Zrebski … Director
Dañel Malán … Costume Designer, Teatro Milagro Artistic Director
Katelan Braymer … Lighting Designer
Tomás Rivero … Muralist
Rory Merritt Stitt … Sound Designer
Estela Robinson … Production Manager
Andrew Phoenix … Technical Director/Master Carpenter
Amber Peoples … Stage Manager
Russell Young and Tim Krause … Art Card Design
Sylvia Malán, Rory Stitt and Adrienne Shelnutt … House Managers
Teatro Milagro is
the international touring theatre company of the Miracle Theatre Group.
Current global issues are crafted into cutting edge dramatic plays infused
with Latino culture, Spanish language and original music.
mission is to share the diversity of Latin America and advocate for
global unity through theatre.