24th Annual Senior’s Navidad on the Border
presented by EPCC Senior Adult Program
Saturday, December 8, 2018
10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
EPCC ASC Auditorium, Bldg A
9050 Viscount Blvd, El Paso, TX 79925
For complimentary tickets, log on to eventbrite.com or call (915) 831-7801
The El Paso Community College Seniors’ Navidad on the Border musical production was first produced 24 years ago by Mary Yanez, Director of the Senior Adult Program for the purpose of celebrating the holiday season with our senior community. The show highlights the American, Mexican and the Nativity traditions on the U.S. Mexico border region.
The Navidad musical showcases seniors with talents discovered while attending music and dance classes provided by the college. The show exemplifies how community volunteer cast members come together to educate, entertain and socialize for the good times. Many seniors find themselves alone during the holiday season when relatives live far away or many of their friends have dwindled. The event presents an opportunity to thank our elders for their contributions and invite them to enjoy a festive experience among their peers to spark the holiday with song and dance.
The show features three parts of the holiday season commencing with the presentation of Our Lady of Guadalupe who appeared to Juan Diego in 1531 and after 487 years is still celebrated in the Basilica de la Virgin de Guadalupe in Mexico City. The Serenatas (songs) are dedicated to the Lady and sung by famous singers accompanied by Mariachi music. On the eve of December 12th the Matachines groups, dance offering go on day and night to their patron mother La Gudalupana Empress of Mexico and of the Indians. The St. Pius Matachines dance and Alberto Trevizo (Juan Diego) sings to the Lady.
The Mexican Fiesta begins with a performance by the Coro Mi Tierra directed by Johnny Martinez, the senior chorus performs traditional Mexican Navidad songs like Los Peces en el Rio, Blanca Navidad, Burrito Sabanero and El Niño del Tambor. The Rondalla Romance de El Paso directed by Francisco Espinoza also performs an array of songs with a Latin upbeat tempo which moves the audience to swing and sing along.
A Fiesta is not complete without the Sacramento Senior Folklorico Dancers directed by Lupe Frescas with a Jalisco number. Amazingly these performers are age 60 to 75 plus who apply many hours of practice to perfect each regional dance and learn the traditional costuming that goes with it.
The Seniors Mariachi Valle Verde directed by Juan David Martinez follows with Feliz Navidad, Mi Virgin Bella and other songs the students learn in their Mariachi class. The seniors are accompanied by guest Mariachi musicians from the community to make a memorable time for the audience.
The reason for the season is “The Nativity” which is a special part of our production. Imagine the night scene with Mary, Joseph, and the infant Jesus laying in a manger. Flutist, Nancy Green with her magical sounds settles our spirit while the holy family is surrounded by shepherds, barn animals and a bright Star singing above the stable. Now the Three Kings arrive bearing lavish gifts of Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh. The Little Blind Drummer Boy offers his drum, the only precious thing he can give. The beautiful music of the nativity continues with O Holy Night, We Three Kings, and The Little Drummer Boy among other songs of the season which are sung by local talented singers. The actors are young people from St. Pius Special Needs Ministry and Antonio Diaz plays the little drummer boy accompanied by his grandmother, Monica Zubia.
Now the volunteers scatter to change the scene to the American Christmas traditions. Ho, Ho, Ho, Santa Claus arrives first to a cozy and warm fireplace and a beautifully decorated Christmas Tree in the home setting. The children are sleeping but magically come alive to dance around the living room, it’s the Sun Desert Dancers in their pajamas, choreographed by Krystal Nance and directed by Darlina Nazario.
Trish Laskowske directs her energetic senior line dancers to a popular Holly Jolly Christmas musical extravaganza by the San Juan Center Line Dancers. It’s not only entertaining but fun too. The Country and Latin steps are smooth and synchronized but the smiles from the dancers are fantastic. Just having fun while you learn and perform.
The Rockerettes from Eastside Senior Center plan to dazzle the audience with their dance routine leaving everyone with a sense of youthful vigor and desire to tap our feet.
The stage is decorated with Christmas trees to be donated to the elderly by Adult Protective Services, the door prizes and goody bags are given away, the refreshments and snacks are just about gone. Special thanks to our sponsors EPCC Senior Adult Program and Clover Health among other community exhibitors for their contributions to the success of this community show.
Santa is still at the photo booth taking pictures with seniors. The sponsors are pleased, the performers are tired, and everyone is ready to say….
Feliz Navidad and to all a Good Night !!!