CHICAGO – Chicago Latinx playwright and actor Sandra Delgado’s smash hit, all-immersive live theatrical event, La Havana Madrid, will return next spring in a co-production between Teatro Vista and Collaboraction.
Performances are May 11-June 23, 2019 in the Heath Mainstage at the Den Theatre, 1331 N. Milwaukee Avenue, in Chicago’s Wicker Park neighborhood. Tickets, $30-$60, go on sale, Monday, December 10 at noon at thedentheatre.com or call the Den at (773) 697-3830.
Back by popular demand, La Havana Madrid is Delgado’s immersive documentary theater experience, complete with live music, based on the true story of the 1960’s Chicago nightclub, La Havana Madrid.
Inspired by real stories of Cuban, Puerto Rican and Colombian immigrants who found refuge there, La Havana Madrid recreates a special time and place in Chicago history by immersing audiences in the lively music of that decade, from mambo to salsa.
Throughout, La Havana Madrid also tells how and why Latinos originally migrated to the shores of Lake Michigan, only to be pushed further west – away from the lake – by the forces of gentrification and racism.
Teatro Vista’s 2017 world premiere of La Havana Madrid resonated deeply with Chicagoans from all different backgrounds and ages. It playing to capacity crowds at Steppenwolf’s 1700 Theatre, The Miracle Center in Hermosa, and an extended summer run in the Goodman’s Owen Theatre.
The Chicago Tribune called it “a heartfelt and fascinating musical tribute…the best selling show in Teatro Vista history.” Chicago’s leading Latinx newspaper Hoy wrote “La obra tiene la magia de conectar a la comunidad, de revivir recuerdos” (“the work has the magic of connecting to the community, of reliving memories.”) New City and Time Out Chicago hailed La Havana Madrid one of the “Best of 2017.” Time Out’s readers named it “Best New Work.”
Teatro Vista ensemble member Cheryl Lynn Bruce, who directed the world premiere, returns to re-stage Delgado’s theatrical, cinematic and musical history of Latino Caribbeans in Chicago. Updates include a reimagined, more immersive set and video design that will evoke an actual night out at a real Chicago 1960s Latino nightclub, complete with cabaret seating, a dance floor and a small stage for the live band.
Delgado, both a Teatro Vista ensemble member and a founding company member of Collaboraction, also returns as the play’s title character, La Havana Madrid. As the evening’s mystical guide and lead singer, Delgado channels audiences through a series of true stories of Latino immigrants in Chicago, how and why they arrived here, the barriers they overcame, their lives, loves, and disappointments, and their lasting impact from generation to generation still today.
“I am thrilled that my two artistic homes are coming together to bring La Havana Madrid back to life. The companies have a long history of collaborating and La Havana Madrid fits perfectly into their complementary missions, that of telling Latinx stories and uniting Chicagoans,” said Delgado. “I am especially excited to be in the Heath Mainstage at the Den Theatre for the evolution of the La Havana Madrid experience. This malleable space is exactly what I have always envisioned for La Havana Madrid. With the combined strength of two companies, we will be able to fully realize the vision I have always had in mind, complete with immersive staging and evocative projections, that will transport audiences back to 1960’s Chicago.”
Returning cast include comedian and producer Mike Oquendo as Tony Quintana, the once owner of La Havana Madrid and host of the 1960s Chicago radio show “Tony’s Latin A-Go-Go.”
Teatro Vista ensemble members Tommy Rivera-Vega and Marvin Quijada will return as young immigrants new to Chicago who each met, danced, loved and lost at La Havana Madrid.
Also back is legendary Colombian-American musician Roberto “Carpacho” Marin and his band of 30 years, Carpacho y Su Super Combo. Together with Delgado and the cast, Carpacho y Su Super Combo chronicles the history of Caribbean Latino music, live, from mambo, to cumbia, to the birth of salsa.
And yes, by the end of the show, audience members are encouraged to get on their feet and dance right along.
Performance schedule and ticket information
Previews of La Havana Madrid are Saturday, May 11 at 7:30 p.m., Sunday,
May 12 at 3 p.m., and Wednesday and Thursday, May 15 and 16 at 7:30 p.m.
Performances run though June 23: Thursdays and Fridays at 7:30 p.m.; Saturdays at 4 p.m. and 8 p.m., and Sundays at 3 p.m. Tickets are $30 general admission, $50 table seat and $60 front row table seat. Tickets go on sale Monday, December 10 at noon at thedentheatre.com or call the Den at (773) 697-3830. Group discounts available.
The Den Theatre is located at 1331 N. Milwaukee Avenue in the heart of Chicago’s Wicker Park neighborhood. Metered street parking is available on Milwaukee and surrounding side streets. Street parking can be difficult to find, so arrive early to secure a spot and then come by The Den for a pre-show drink at the bar. The Den is close to the CTA Blue Line Division St. stop, and the 9 Ashland, 70 Division and 56 Milwaukee CTA bus lines. For more information, visit thedentheatre.com.
About Teatro Vista
Teatro Vista shares and celebrates the riches of Latinx culture with Chicago audiences. The company provides work and professional advancement opportunities for Latinx theatre artists, with special emphasis on the company’s ensemble members, and seeks to enhance the curricular goals of Chicago students through theater.
Teatro Vista was founded in 1990 by Edward Torres and Henry Godinez with a primary focus to produce new works by Latinx theatre artists and classic plays featuring artists of color. The company’s current leadership team is Ricardo Gutiérrez, Executive Artistic Director, and Sylvia Hevia, Managing and Development Director.
Teatro Vista is supported by Alphawood Foundation, Paul M. Angell Family Foundation, The MacArthur Fund for Arts & Culture at the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation, Bloomberg Philanthropies, the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events of the City of Chicago, Art Works, Illinois Arts Council, Lester and Hope Abelson, The Shubert Foundation, The Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelly Foundation, the Bayless Family Foundation and Vidal & Associates. Purple Group is Teatro Vista’s Headline Season Sponsor.
Collaboraction, Chicago’s social contemporary theater, collaborates with a diverse community of Chicagoans, artists and community activists to create original theatrical experiences that push artistic boundaries and explore critical social issues. Since the company’s founding in 1996, Collaboraction has worked with more than 3,000 artists to bring more than 60 productions and events to more than 150,000 audience members.
For the past five years, Collaboraction has partnered with the Chicago Park District through their Night Out in the Parks program, returning each year to cultivate relationships and theater in Englewood, Austin and Hermosa through the Crime Scene, PEACEBOOK and Encounter tours. Production highlights also include its series of Crime Scene productions responding to Chicago’s crime epidemic; 15 years of the SKETCHBOOK Festival; and the YO SOLO Festival of Latino Solo Shows, co-produced with Teatro Vista in 2012.
Collaboraction is led by Artistic Director Anthony Moseley, Managing Director Dr. Marcus Robinson, a company of 20 talented Chicago theater artists, and a dedicated staff and board of directors. The company’s vision is to utilize theater to cultivate dialogue and action around our most critical social issues throughout Chicago.
Collaboraction is supported by The Chicago Community Trust, The Joyce Foundation, The Field Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, DCASE and the Wicker Park & Bucktown SSA #33 Chamber of Commerce. This program is partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency.