A Chicanx Opera for the Day of the Dead

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Dancers Mayra Enriquez and Norberto Martinez are featured in 'Una Opera Muerta' at the Brava Theater Center (Photo: Gordon Huang)

John Jota Leaños is raising an army of skeletons against colonialism— at least metaphorically. He's an animator and filmmaker who's also directing Imperial Silence: Una Opera Muerta, a Day of the Dead opera that features animated sugar-skull news anchors on DNN, the Dead News Network, dancers and singers performing story songs like “El Corrido de Pat Tillman."

"We’re in these borderlands," Leaños says, "in this de-colonial mixed scene, where we get all of these influences and try to make sense of it." As my co-host A-lan Holt says, Leaños' work is an "intervention into the long (and often violent) history of tactics used to silence non-white viewpoints in the United States of America." And there are laughs too. Details here.