Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly version Share this


By Kathy Carpenter

Associate/Youth Reviewer

October 11, 2016  (El Cajon) Blood Wedding is a Spanish play directed by a white guy from North Carolina who speaks very little Spanish. Rob Lufty jumped at the chance when asked if he would like to direct the piece of work by Federico Garcia Lorca. With the help of his assistant director, Jessica Hanley, he did the poet proud.

A third of this play was in Spanish. A decision made to keep to integrity of the play intact--a difficult choice as most of the actors did not speak Spanish either. Even for those that did there were challenges, since this was Spanish from Spain, a little different from the Mexican version of Spanish that we know.

As part of the audience not fluent in Spanish, I was a little hesitant to attend the show. Would I be able to follow along? No problem. The production team did an amazing job with keeping the show followable. The parts left in Spanish was shown on the rock-like wall, part of the backdrop. The parts spoken in Spanish were quite beautiful and poetic. I did not even know Lorca was a poet until I read the program after the show, and recognized the beauty of the poetic scenes. The most beautiful lyrical piece was the soliloquy of Mariel Shaw as the moon, breath taking. Note: all of the Spanish used in the play are Lorca's originally words.

All of the players excelled in their Spanish. Job well done.

The story took place in 1933 in Andulusian Spain. This is a story of unrequited love and family duty,  with lovers who cannot itch their burning desires and defy society to try to be together.

The director put in a note from the words of Frederico Gargia Lorca, which seem to fit the play perfectly. " While the Italian artists have the angel as a source of inspiration, and the French have the muse, the Spaniards have the duende, a dark enery that comes from the ground up and seuzes the body of the artist, forcing him to create. One must awaken the duende in the remotest mansions of the blood."

The audience favorite was Delia Mejia, who elicited laughter from the audience again and again, even in her minor role. She continues to win fans. Another standout for me was Laura Jimenez, who gave a heartfelt performance as the wife. The groom was played by Isai Luna, quite believable as a Spaniard son. Vanessa Duron portrayed his mom and Jillian Jones the bride; both had their strongest scene towards the end of the show, when the bride comes to the mom to ask for forgiveness. Leonardo the lover, was played by Daniel Ramos, who brought the intensiveness to the play.

If you love symbolism, Lorca is a master and the play reflect this to the nth degree, and this is the show for you.

Playing at the Stagehouse Theatreat Grossmont College October 13,14, 1nd 15th at 7:30 p.m. and October 15th at 2 p.m.

Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.