A Musical Piñata For Christmas

Teatro Paraguas will present a festive bilingual evening of live music, carols, and comedy entitled A Musical Piñata for Christmas for four performances beginning December 15th.

TP’s musical director JoJo Sena de Tarnoff has formed an ensemble of musicians and actors ranging in age from 4 to 80, who will perform selections from the traditional Las Posadas, as well as traditional and contemporary Christmas carols.

The musicians-- Lisette de la Paz, John McIntyre, Kev Smith, Jeff Tarnoff, and JoJo Sena de Tarnoff-- will also perform Mr. McIntyre’s original arrangement of the Christmas favorite Carol of the Bells, which features flute, percussion, keyboards, and, of course, bells.

The program will also feature original holiday music by the Santa Fe-based duo Melange.

On the theatrical side, Lenore Gallegos directs a bilingual version of Oscar Hijuelos’ short delightful comedy Fantasia de Navidad, starring Jeni Nelson and Argos MacCallum as Mr. and Mrs. Claus, and Kev Smith as the reporter Rico Pollo. Xochitl Ehrl of Santa Fe Dance Works appears as the dancing Dancer the Reindeer. Jason Jaramillo plays Rico Pollo Dec.22-23, and leads the Las Posadas as well.

Hijuelos, the son of Cuban immigrants, was born in New York City in 1951, and graduated from City College of New York in 1976 with a Masters in Creative Writing. His first novel, Our House in the Last World, was published in 1983 and won the Rome Prize in 1985, awarded by the American Academy in Rome. He wrote Fantasia de Navidad for the Academy’s annual Christmas show.

His second novel, The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love, won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1990, and was adapted for the film The Mambo Kings in 1992 and for the musical in 2005. Hijuelos was the first Hispanic to win the Pulitzer Prize.

After the program, the children in the audience will be invited to help break a piñata on stage.

Performances of A Musical Piñata for Christmas are Saturdays, December 15 and 22 at 4:00 pm and Sundays December 16 and 23 at 6:00 pm. Admission is free, and donations are gratefully accepted.

Reservations may be made by calling 505-424-1601.