John Jota Leaños: Imperial Silence: Una Ópera Muerta

Cultural taboos around silence, death, and dissent are presented through a multimedia performance that fuses dark, humored animation with Mexican dance, Mariachi, hip-hop, bossa nova, and blues. The work is created by San Francisco-based director John Jota Leaños; Chicago-based choreographer Joel Valentin-Martinez; DJ/composer Cristóbal Martinez; and the Tucson-based Mariachi ensemble Los Cuatro Vientos. The opera’s four acts explore war and empire by following Mother Goose children’s rhymes; a skeleton traveling the road to Mictlan (the Aztec underworld); and an animated newscast that includes news footage from Chicago events.