Austin Latino New Play Festival 2015: A Look Back at Basilica or The One With the Roosters

On May 14th, Basilica premiered to a packed house at the Emma S. Barrientos Mexican-American Cultural Center in Austin, Texas. Written by Andrew Valdez, a recent graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, Basilica focuses on one family’s version of the American Dream and presents the struggles inherent in crossing the Mexican-American border. Lupe and his wife, Juanita, have four children—Ana Sophia, Diego, and Julieta. Shifting between reality and dream-like sequences, Basilica captivatingly focuses on the consequences of Lupe’s gambling at the palenque, a rooster cockpit which allows different contenders to let their roosters battle one another for cash prizes. After “making a deal” with the devil at the Palenque and gaining funds from his prized rooster, Lupe begins to see that maybe the grass is not always greener on the other side. Basilica or The One With the Roosters teaches viewers about the value of family, consequences and loss, and the intimate struggle of what it takes to achieve one’s dreams—despite the cost. We wish Andrew the best of luck with this production and hope it continues to grow and prosper in the theatre community!

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