Sabina Berman's Entre Villa Y Una Mujer Desnuda (Between Pancho Villa and A Naked Woman) at Miracle Theater Group is a bawdy, poignant comedic exploration of the battle of the sexes from a decidedly Mexican perspective. The Machismo culture and reverence to outlaw hero Pancho Villa sets the back drop as a modern day romance unspools itself before our eyes. A sexually charged relationship between Gina (a lovely and well cast Nurys Herrera), a single mother with an adult son studying abroad, and her lover Adrián (a delightful Enrique E. Andrade), an ineffectual intellectual comes to agrinding halt when Gina demands something more than a quick roll in the hay, something as revolutionary and shocking as- a cup of tea and conversation as foreplay. The choreographed dance of the sexes takes on layers upon layers of allegorical significance as they struggle to determine who leads and who follows. When Gina decides to break free of the doomed affair with Adrián and start seeing a much younger lover Ismael, a doe-eyed youth (Alberto Romero) the spirit of of Pancho Villa (Vicente Guzmán-Orozco) begins offering advice to Adrián, to comic effect, on how to rule a woman. But as they say- The time times they are a changin'.
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Photo by Russell Young ©
Presented in its original spanish with english supertitles projected above the action the award-winning* Entre Villa Y Una Mujer Desnuda is a must see whether or not you are a native speaker of the language (disclosure-I am not a spanish speaker and I followed and loved the performance just fine). I was lucky enough to catch the show before it opened properly and aside from a final act technical snafu at the very end it was a fairly flawless performance, a true crowd pleaser from start to finish.
* Winner Best New Play of The Year 1994 - Mexican Critics Association
What: ENTRE VILLA Y UNA MUJER DESNUDA
(Between Pancho Villa and a Naked Woman)
A very sexy comedy written by Sabina Berman, directed by guest artist Juan Carlos Vives
Sponsored by the Consulate of Mexico in Portland
When: February 12-March 6, 2010
Where: Milagro Theatre, 525 SE Stark Street, Portland, Oregon 97214
Admission: $20 - $22 depending on date; $16 for students and seniors any performance
Special events: A free post-play discussion with the guest director, cast and crew immediately follows the
2 p.m. matinee on Sunday, Feb. 14, 2010.