“OLD MONEY IS HARD TO KEEP IN A NEW MEXICO”
From Obsidian Theatre‘s website:
Set amid the explosive drug wars in present-day northern Mexico, El Nogalar is the story of the Galvan family’s struggle to hold on to their homestead-and their precarious social status. The play shadows the family’s housekeeper, Dunia, as she watches the family matriarch Maite and her daughters squander their money and risk losing everything to a local drug cartel. Despite warnings from friends and family, Maite ignores her dwindling fortune as stubbornly as she ignores the sinister capos simmering at her doorstep.
El Nogalar (The Pecan Orchard) is inspired by Chekov’s classic The Cherry Orchard. El Nogalar is set on the Texas-Mexico border and follows one family’s struggle with a violent, changing world. El Nogalar was written by Mexican-born, McAllen-raised playwright Tanya Saracho, who has received many accolades in Chicago theater and who also writes and develops projects with HBO and ABC Television. Her latest gig is her own series on STARZ called Pour Vida.
El Nogalar, depicts a boisterous family featuring a flirtatious and at times naive mother, disconnected anglicized daughter, a stressed out, high-strung older sister to that daughter bearing the weight of the duties and obligations that seem to only fall on the first-born and a fast-talking, quick-witted maid and a good intention-ed young man, blinded by desperation and plagued by heartburn.
Where the El Nogalar script becomes unnecessarily wordy, the actors keep it real, talking over each other in arguments in English and in Spanish in a way that any dysfunctional family can relate to, no matter the language. The cast has a perfect handle of teetering between the drama of telenovelas and the reality of any ol’ run-of-the-mill family with big personalities; almost never did I think of the characters as caricatures or offensive to
any Latinx household.
The set is multi-functional and just beautiful; El Nogalar‘s set is one of the single best uses of the space that is Obsidian Theatre I’ve ever seen- or been part of!
El Nogalar is a refreshing piece of theatre and you only have a couple more weekends to see it. Support local art!
El Nogalar plays through August 20th
All shows (Thursday, Friday, Saturday) Start at 8pm
General Admission $20
Patron Reserve $30
All media courtesy of Obsidian Theatre.