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Su Teatro highlights local Latino, Chicano community stories

The Latino-focused theatre company tells stories that speak to struggles, celebrations and lives of Latino and Chicano Coloradans.

Victoria De Leon

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Theatre can be a place to escape from reality – Su Teatro aims to bring realities of Latinos and Chicanos to the stage. 

Actress Yolanda Ortega has been doing just that with the Denver theatre for 48 years.

"We grew out of the Chicano movement and so in order to really talk about it, tell our stories, we needed to hear our stories and to know what was going on in the community," Ortega said. "It was kind of a give and take, the community was us, we were the community." 

In every play, there's something that speaks to the struggles, celebrations and lives of Latino and Chicano Coloradans, Ortega said. 

"A lot of issues centered around Latinos not having access to education, Chicanos who needed to get work, Chicanos in the arts even and people that were just struggling to exist and so we told those stories, but we also listened to those stories from our community." 

Performers are currently rehearsing for El Corrido Del Barrio to kick off their 50th anniversary celebration. The play focuses on the families from the Auraria neighborhood that were displaced in the 1960s and it runs from Oct. 7 - 24. Tickets can be purchased here.

Before Su Teatro had a theatre, stage and seats to fill, their stage was in the community. They often put on plays in parks, people's backyards, functions, universities and colleges.  

"That was important to our history and it really created a community within and without teatro, without the walls of teatro," Ortega said.