The second anniversary of Mi Historia, Mi Manera (My Story, My Way) will be celebrated this Saturday, Feb. 27, with a day-long block party that will include chalk art, a photo booth, food trucks, giveaways, and an immersive theater experience. The event will begin at 11 a.m. at Summit Avenue between Villa and Maple Streets in Pasadena. A play, written and performed by Pasadena residents and entitled “Lottery Loteria,” will start at noon and repeat at 3 p.m.
Community organizer Victor Vazquez, of The Pasadena Playhouse, says about the event: “We are finding new ways to co-create with local communities through Mi Historia, Mi Manera by bringing together thirty neighbors to collectively write and perform a play about what it is like to live in their own neighborhood today. It’s an urban neighborhood just like many others – and the people here deal with the kinds of issues that most Americans deal with: getting their kids to school, parking tickets, new neighbors moving in, families that get displaced, gentrification, redevelopment, crime, drugs, not enough housing, and not enough employment – but they also have a lot of love, warmth, humor and pride about the neighborhood that is home. Following the half hour performance, the play opens up to include the audience to directly participate and join in the action – speaking their truth and testifying about what the neighborhood means to them – and getting to know their neighbors in a unique way that only live theater can provide. The celebration continues throughout the day with free giveaways and food truck vendors who will provide affordable and delicious comestibles for everyone to enjoy!”
District 5 Councilmember Victor Gordo, who is now involved with the event and plans to be present, says: “An important part of building community is neighbors understanding neighbors, and Mi Historia, Mi Manera is a fantastic way for us to learn about each other. The telling and hearing of our own stories can promote a better understanding of our individual challenges, hopes and aspirations for one another and our families. It is my hope that through this greater understanding we will see true and lasting community growth. My neighbors and I are grateful for the Pasadena Playhouse and the Irvine Foundation providing us a creative, fun, and unique way to come together – and to have a great party to learn about each other.”
The Mi Historia, Mi Manera initiative is an extension of The Playhouse’s Wells Fargo Theatrical Diversity Project, which was founded in 2005 by Artistic Director Sheldon Epps. The Diversity Project is dedicated to promoting culturally and generationally diverse programming at The Pasadena Playhouse.
Photograph courtesy of M.Kobe Photography / Two Pasadena community members connect as they each share a memory of something they feel nostalgia for. Despite that they are neighbors, they had never met before.
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