A new chamber theatre has emerged on the San Francisco theatre horizon: Campo Santo, which in Spanish means Graveyard, Sacred Ground, or Family of Saints. The troupe's inaugural production, Ocatvio Solis' award-winning play Santos & Santos, opens July 19.
Formed by three San Francisco theatre artists, Sean San Jose Blackman, Luis Saguar and Michael Torres, the company aims to produce new or recent works with few sets or costumes, letting the words of the playwright tell the story.
Santos & Santos is about the difficulties and moral quandaries that arise when a young Latino man (Sean San Jose Blackman) attempts success in America without turning one's back on his race. The young man feels his promising job at the San Diego District Attorney's office to be mostly an ad for affirmative action. When he goes to work instead for his attorney brother, he discovers their firm is financing the community philanthropy with money from drug deals.
Blackman has collaborated with Solis before, including Magic Theatre's recent world premiere production of Prospect. The company has already gained Solis' support, and also plans to collaborate with other nationally known Latino playwrights such as Jose Rivera and Migdalia Cruz.
Blackman is gaining a nationwide reputation for being the creative and driving force of Pieces of the Quilt, a theatrical benefit for AIDS, consisting of short plays about AIDS by some of America's greatest playwrights. Quilt will premiere at the Magic theatre this fall, and then move to Los Angeles. Santos & Santos is directed by Tony Kelly, with original music by Tito Larriva. It will run at in association with the theatre collective, Thick Description, at their new space New Langton Arts, on Folsom Street in San Francisco. Performances run Thu-Mon, July 19-Aug. 11. For tickets or more information, call (415) 550-7250.