El Blanco, played by acclaimed actor and performer JAMES CAIRNS weaves together spellbinding stories and songs based on everything from Mexican creation myths and ancient Egyptians to George Clooney!
From the pen of GWYDION BEYNON and starring JAMES CAIRNS, EL BLANCO: TALES OF MARIACHI exhibits the prodigious talents of these two artists.
Cairns has long wowed South African audiences with his performances in productions like the The Sitting Man, Dirt, The Snow Goose, the latter two performed here at the A & G Theatre on the Square. Beynon has penned a litany of recent hits such as The Epicene Butcher and Amateur Hour. They suspected that they might be a good combination and they were absolutely right. After winning a Standard Bank Gold Ovation Award at the National Arts Festival, EL BLANCO: TALES OF THE MARIACHI was invited on full bursary to the Brighton Fringe Festival.
It’s hard to beat a story well told. Stories in themselves are acts of creation, connecting the past with the present. Creation itself is a story. Without stories, we would have nothing but darkness and silence.
This is what James Cairns’s character El Blanco believes. While he may unashamedly spin a pack of lies, in this instance, he comes close to the truth.
El Blanco’s struggle, mostly with himself, to earn the title of Mariachi is masterfully presented through music and storytelling. “Stories are songs for people who cannot sing,” is one of El Blanco’s gems “and songs are stories for those who can.”
El Blanco must overcome his belief that he can do neither. The tale leads us through a chain of false epiphanies which only lead him back into self-doubt. At the outset, El Blanco promises that “there will be song, there will be stories and there will be many lies”. As we discover, lies often reveal truths that would otherwise remain unspoken.