The recent guilty verdict of Van Dyke in the Laquan McDonald case and ongoing new of immigrant children detained in cages and tents demonstrate today’s youth are up amongst harsh realities. Finally, a new play reflects those realities back to families and young people with honesty, fun, and, of course, mutant chihuahuas!
Environmental degradation, immigration and police brutality are among the issues playwright Ricardo Gamboa tackles in The Real-Life Adventures of Jimmy de las Rosas that premieres Thursday, October 11th at Free Street Theater in Noble Square as part of the Chicago Latino Theater Alliance’s Destinos festival celebrating Latino theater from across the globe.
The Real-Life Adventures of Jimmy de las Rosas follows Jimmy, a 13-year old Mexican-American boy that can move things with his mind and lives with his undocumented grandmother and mother in Little Village during a summer when disappearances are plaguing the hood. When his mother goes missing, Jimmy teams up with his trans-Latina neighbor and a homeless, super-powered sibling duo to rescue the “disappeareds” and reclaim the streets of his community. For the story, Gamboa drew from their own activism and upbringing on Chicago’s Southside, real-life environmental degradation in Little Village, and local and global histories of activism like Chicago’s Rudy Lozano and Argentina’s horrific “Noche de los Lapices” to create impactful edutainment.
“Youth have led social movements throughout history. When we think about the times we’re in and what youth of color are up against, it’s not enough just to give them superficial representation of superheroes ‘that look like them.’ We have to remind them that they’re superheroes too and can change our world,” says Gamboa about the play’s message.
For Real-Life Adventures, Gamboa reunites with director Ana Velazquez who conceived the coming-of-age tale as a multi-media spectacle with animation, puppetry, and superhero fights.
The Real-Life Adventures of Jimmy de las Rosas
October 11-November 17
Thursdays and Fridays at 7pm, Saturdays at 2pm
All performances at
Free Street Theater
1419 West Blackhawk
(3rd Floor of the Pulask Park Fieldhouse)
For more information and tickets visit: clata.org/destinos-main and freestreet.z2systems.com/np/clients/freestreet/eventRegistration.jsp?event=2&