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Bless Me, Ultima: A Mexican-American Opera by Héctor Armienta
April 20, 2018 @ 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
One event on April 21, 2018 at 7:30pm
One event on April 22, 2018 at 2:00pm
Bless Me, Ultima is a new Mexican-American opera on the power of destiny by composer/librettist Héctor Armienta. The opera is based on the acclaimed coming-of-age novel by Rudolfo Anaya, who is is widely recognized as the godfather of Chicano literature. The world premiere, which took place in New Mexico on February 18th, 2018, performed to sold out crowds. Join us for the West Coast premiere at the majestic Mexican Heritage Theater – School of Arts and Culture in San Jose this April, and be one of the first to experience this innovative and inspiring new work.
It is the story of Antonio Marez, a young boy, at the time when Ultima comes to stay with his family in New Mexico. Ultima is a curandera, or shaman, one who cures with herbs and magic. Under her wise wing, Tony will probe the family ties that bind and rend him, and will discover himself in the magical secrets of the pagan past- a mythic legacy as palpable as the Catholicism of Latin America. And at each life turn there is Ultima, who delivered Tony into the world… and will nurture the birth of his soul.
About the Novel
The novel is considered one of the best in Chicano literature and is one of the National Endowment for the Arts Big Reads. Richard Rodrigues has characterized the novel as an “important contribution to literature in a pluralistic United States,” and others consider it the quintessential Chicano coming-of-age novel. In 2013, the novel was made into a movie. Most recently, Rudolfo Anaya was awarded the National Humanities Medal by Former President Barack Obama for his literature.