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Pharr Community Theater to present ‘A Tejano Christmas Carol’

November 24, 2018

For the third consecutive year, Pharr Community Theater will present “A Tejano Christmas Carol.”

This Charles Dickens adaptation is set in the Rio Grande Valley, where the mean-spirited shyster Mr. Ezequiel Codos serves as a powerful attorney and greedy water broker. He owns vast property on both sides of the Rio Grande, including tons of water rights, and when he decides to sell all those rights the river dries up with grave consequences in the future.

In the process, he’s visited by three ghosts — including a soldier woman from the Mexican Revolution, played by Armandina Sesin, who has assumed the role for the last three years.

“I love playing ‘La Soldadera’/The Ghost of Christmas Past because she reminds me of Mexico and its incredible history, including the romantic side of the revolution,” Sesin said. “The Christmas season is coming and this play is perfect for it, please come and enjoy it.”

Andres Flores, 14, is an eighth-grader at Austin Middle School in San Juan. This is his second play with PCT, where he now performs in the role of the Ghost of Christmas present, as a young Zoot Suiter alongside 20 other characters and townsfolk who eventually help Codos find a better way and a kinder spirit.

“I love being an actor in a play, it has every basic element,” said Flores. “I get a cool feeling when out there on stage and you have so much fun saying your lines in front of a crowd, the energy makes me feel great. I connect well to this character.”

As the local theater company continues to celebrate its 10th year, this production has nearly 30 local actors, crew and technicians, including Nela De La Garza as stage and production manager.

It also marks the third year in a row that veteran actor and company director Pedro Garcia plays Mr. Codos, the Scrooge equivalent.

“I seldom cast myself in our plays but this is a part I feel I was cut to play, especially now that I’ve gotten older,” said Garcia. “Codos is a fun character because he’s mean … jeje. I allow myself to try different intonations with him, and this time I’m happy to be offered direction by our new director, Seres Jaime Magaña.”

Magaña, 27, first took acting classes with Garcia when he was 14 years old and was brought back into the theater a year and half ago to write and direct the play “The Tragic Corrido of Romeo & Lupe,” loosely based on Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet.

Again under the supervision of Garcia, Magaña is being poised to direct on his own soon.

“I’m going about it one step at a time … getting more and more involved with everything that comes into a production of a play; costumes, lights, music, the setting of the stage, directing actors and seeing what it really takes to orchestrate a play,” Magaña said.

The play is family friendly. Pharr Community Theater shows are bilingual.

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