Alumna puts on production of professor’s play

The play “Ceviche en Pittsburgh,” written by Jose Castro-Urioste, professor of Spanish, is being produced by Summer Coronado, Spring semester 2000 graduate of Spanish international studies.

Coronado is the sole proprietor of Calavera Theatre Company, located in Dallas, Texas, started in March 2016. When looking for an opening production to put on, Coronado decided to use “Ceviche en Pittsburgh,” a play she had wanted to direct twenty years ago but did not have to time to do so.

“I was actually a part of the class at [Purdue University Calumet] that did the translation of the script into English. This was its professional debut then, and I loved it from the start,” Coronado said.

The play was written in Spanish in 1985 and has been previously performed in Chicago, Los Angeles and Pittsburgh. It is about two Peruvian brothers, Tono and Carlos, who have been separated for many years with Tono living in the United States and Carlos living in Peru. Tono moves to gain a better life, but Carlos stays behind and builds up a resentment towards his brother.

“What really spoke to me is what happens to the family that is left behind,” Coronado said. “The brothers in the play are separated by countries, but it could also be about children of families that have to move across the country. They build up a resentment towards the people who feel as if they have to succeed as much as they can. So many topics and things with the play that should seem relevant to many people today.”

The production will be opening in Dallas before it comes to the Crown Point Community Theatre. It will be performed in Spanish, but the audience will be able to download a podcast of the play in English to listen to while watching the performance.

The cast features Ignacio Lujan as Carlos, Cristian Munoz as Tono and Alondra Estremera as Lucia.

Coronado, who is originally from East Chicago and has a history of performing in the area, said the opportunity to put on a production in Spanish in the area she is from is exciting.

“Ever since I left, people ask me when I’m putting on another show. So when this opportunity presented itself, I had to take it,” Coronado said. “After I did some research, I realized there are not many people doing performances in Spanish in the area and knew this was a great opportunity to bring that to a local theater. As a former resident, I want to be able to spark interest in other performances that aren’t as common.”

Castro-Urioste said it was pleasing to see a former student of his wanting to put on a production of his work.

“It’s very interesting to see another person grow, since she was 20-something when she was here. She’s a very good producer, and I’m impressed to see her capacity now.”

Castro-Urioste flew to Dallas to see one of the shows there and show his support of the play.

Coronado said the cast has been rehearsing since Feb. 1. The Calavera Theatre Company has 12 full members consisting of cast and crew and five associate members that are assisting in producing. One of the challenges has been maintaining the play’s dialect. Castro-Urioste is originally from Peru, so the Peruvian accent is prominent in the play.

“Cristian is from Chile, Alondra is from Puerto Rico and Ignacio is from Mexico. It’s been exciting for them to hear things in a Peruvian accent and to learn to speak in it. It’s been a challenge, but they’ve been more than up to it,” Coronado said.

The play will be performed on April 27 at 8 p.m., April 28 at 8 p.m. and April 29 at both 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. Tickets can be bought online through Eventbrite under Ceviche en Pittsburgh – Northwest Indiana. General admission is $15, and tickets are $12 for students, military and senior citizens. There is a 3 percent service fee when buying tickets.