With papel picado of colorful colors, pan de muerto, cempasuchil flowers and typical costumes of Mexico, the Camille Playhouse will host its second yearly Catrina Fundraiser at 7 p.m. Thursday on their website to educate the community on Dia de Muertos and raise funds to support the theater.
While last year the event was in person, chairwoman of the Catrina Gala and boardmember Lilia Garcia said the event was a great success but due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the theater is not able to host in person celebrations.
“Unfortunately, we can’t necessarily have a gala right now and a lot of things have changed, but we are still here, the Camille is still here, people are still here and we have memories that are still around this theater and let’s continue,” she said while decorating the giant altar where the performance will take place.
The altar at the theater features several local people who were an important part for both the Camille Playhouse and the community. Some of the altars include a pair of boots, a hat and even some glasses that are now cherished items that belonged to a loved one who passed away.
“A lot of people have started here and so we are like ‘ recuérdame ‘ remember us and it’s also a way of not only remembering the Camille but remembering a lot of people that have been special to us. It’s been a hard year, a lot of loss and it’s a way of remembering but in a good way to focus on the memories, the happy memories, the life,” Garcia said.
“The celebration of El Dia De los Muertos I think it’s a celebration of life, even though you remember what has gone in the past, it’s life.”
The performance will be prerecorded and will include mariachis and performances from several local artists and also international such as Edoardo Rocha a fashion designer, producer, director and actor in Mexico who has dressed several celebrities in Mexico. To watch, visit camilleplayhouse.net.
Garcia said she wants the event to be educational on the meaning of Dia de los Muertos and as well a way for the community to support the arts.
“We want it to be educational, we want people to realize the Catrina is not the queen of Halloween, this is not the Mexican Halloween, we are trying to be very educational and we are trying to stress that, you know there are so many images of la Catrina, she started of as a political protest and then she kind of merged, she was even a James Bond girl,” she said.
“We are trying to educate people that this is not Halloween, it is a day of life, a day of rememberance.”
The performance will be streamed online for free but the theater is hosting a raffle that will help them keep the Camille alive. Tickets are $55 and can be bought at camilleplayhouse.net with several prizes available to choose from. There is also a GoFundMe available for those who wish to donate, gf.me/u/yawr9z.
“We have to remember our past and I think it’s really especial, I really hope that people realize all non-profits right now are hurting. From museum’s of art, children’s museums, the movies, I mean performing arts are hurting, theaters, so many non-profits and I really hope whether they support the Camille or other non-profits or other arts, just don’t forget about the arts, don’t forget about our culture,” Garcia said.