The Dream of a Lifetime

Stage play review: An L.A. Journey~ The story of Lorenzo Alfredo, another Casa 0101 Theater presentation, through June 7

By Frankie Firme, Contributing Editor
Published on LatinoLA: May 12, 2015

The Dream of a Lifetime

Like traveling through the depths of a thousand souls, I was once again privileged to experience the human existence through a stage presentation of a true story that touches upon generations of my people in Los Angeles and Aztlan, and our struggle to survive and thrive.

CASA 0101 Theater in East Los Angeles is now presenting "An L.A.Journey: The true story of Lorenzo Alfredo" through June 7th.

Lorenzo Alfredo is a K'iche Mayan homeless orphan from Guatemala, who endured more than the average share of heartache, struggle, and desperation in his young lifetime, who lost all his family by the time he was 8 years old, and began an incredible journey at the age of 11 that I don't believe 90% of people reading this piece could endure & survive with the heart & optimism Lorenzo has.

Starting off as an 11-year-old orphan selling fruit in the streets to survive, Lorenzo makes an incredible 1,000 mile journey through Guatemala, Mexico, and the deadly deserts of the Mexico-Arizona border to come to Los Angeles seeking a better life than the only one he has ever known.

Helped by Olivia, a tortilla maker escaping an abusive relationship, Lorenzo & Olivia pose as mother & son as they make an arduous 13-month journey through 2 countries that has them at the foot of danger during their trek of migration to the United States.

...the surprise ending of this incredible story is one you have to experience...and the lump I had in your throat is one you, too, will experience if you have any heart.

This is the story of continued migration to Northern America by millions of people spanning generations of thousands of years since the beginning of man...as well as an inspirational true story of life and the human spirit that will not quit.

I was enthralled by the play not only because of the storyline and its excellent presentation & cast... but also because it touched me in a sense that made me respect for their tenacity the people our present day society labels "Illegal immigrants"...and appreciate my good fortune that I was born, raised, and educated in this Country...

...and have never had to suffer, struggle, and endure what young Lorenzo Alfredo has had to endure just to live in the City of Angels that is Los Angeles, California amongst us .

The play & cast are well-assembled & directed, and young actor, 11-year-old Olin Tonatiuh, simply steals the show and your heart as young Lorenzo Alfredo, as he endures poverty, discrimination, hard times, hunger, and danger along with Olivia, played by Blanca Melchor, yet always manages to be a respectful and optimistic young person that anyone should hope to have such a child in their lives.

And the end of the show I was lucky to meet Lorenzo Alfredo for a brief moment. The warmth of his smile, the firmness of his handshake, and the optimism in his eyes renewed my belief in the human spirit that can overcome adversity...and I should hope more young people would appreciate the life in this great Country of ours...and more adults in society would appreciate THEIR ancestors who came to this Country as immigrants before they label others as "illegal."

CASA 0101 Theater in Boyle Heights, East Los Angeles continues to produce and present outstanding live stage plays reflecting the life, love, struggles, heartaches, and victories of the people you don't see on TV everyday...but are a BIG part of our World that keep it turning.

I encourage and welcome you all to step out and experience a live stage play...you won't regret it!

My thanks & appreciation to Director Emmanuel Deleage and the cast & crew of CASA 0101's presentation of "An L.A.Journey~The story of Lorenzo Alfredo".

...I stand enlightened.

Author's note: For more info on this and other great stage plays go to www.casa0101.org

About Frankie Firme, Contributing Editor:
Frankie Firme is the Al Capone of the microphone & Hitman of West Coast Chicano Soul heard daily on World wide Internet Radio station www.eastLArevue.com, and a regular contributor to this fine web magazine.
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