Milagro’s Duende de Lorca

Milagro’s new stage presentation, Duende de Lorca, follows the early life of Surrealist poet Federico García Lorca. At age 27, as a struggling artist living with his parents, his puppet plays were laughed at by critics. 

In search of duende, Lorca’s travels through New York and Cuba become a quest for cultural integration. In the Americas, he fused his cante jondo (deep song) with Afro-Cuban son, creating new rhythms for poetic drama.  

The play, written by Milagro’s Dañel Malán, tells of his life, from the opening night of his 1925 play Mariana Pineda, to his books, Gypsy Ballads and Poet in New York, and his relationships with Salvador Dalí, Melchor Almagro and all of it becomes his life, voice and art.

In 1933, Lorca lectured in Buenos Aires addressing the spirit behind what makes great performance stir the emotions: “The duende, then, is a power, not a work. It is a struggle, not a thought. I have heard an old maestro of the guitar say, ‘The duende is not in the throat; the duende climbs up inside you, from the soles of the feet.’ … It is not a question of ability, but of true, living style; of blood, of the most ancient culture, of spontaneous creation… everything that has black sounds in it, has duende.”

Duende De Lorca, a bilingual production directed by Lawrence Siulagi, is presented January 13-23 at Milagro Theatre, 525 SE Stark St., Thursdays-Saturdays at 7:30 pm and Sunday, January 23 at 2 pm. Tickets are $20-$27 with discounts for students, seniors. See Milagro.org or call 503.236.7253.

Photo by Liana Rose

Milagro’s Duende de Lorca

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