Fandango for Butterflies (And Coyotes) • IN-PERSON

Fandango for Butterflies (And Coyotes) • IN-PERSON

October 6 & 7, 2021 . 7PM
Photo by Maria Baranova

Event Attributes

Presented By

Presented By: 

For more information regarding accessible accommodations, please click here.

“El fandango emigró, y yo emigré con el fandango.” Immigrants from Mexico, Honduras and the Dominican Republic living in New York City without “papeles” band together inside a community sanctuary for a fandango—a celebration brought to life by live music, dance and performance. They shelter-in-place as they wait for Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) raids to pass and for a family member making the dangerous trek to the U.S. As the fandango plays on, fear and anxiety sink in—fear of family separation, fear of having made the wrong decision and fear for those making the perilous journey across the border. But as threats loom dangerously close, strangers become family, fear becomes strength and sorrow becomes joy. 

Conceived by Chilean-Costa Rican playwright Andrea Thome in partnership with En Garde Arts, Fandango for Butterflies (and Coyotes) was shaped by the unheard voices of many undocumented immigrants. While at The Clarice in 2021-22, artists from the ensemble will host a dinner conversation with UndocuTerps, a student organization that supports immigrant and undocumented student life at the University of Maryland. By bringing to life true stories that  transcend social boundaries, En Garde Arts produces bold experiences that break barriers and inspire audiences and creatives alike, including School of Theatre, Dance, and Performance Studies and School of Music students and College Park Scholars, who will continue experiencing the company’s work up-close this season in workshops and lectures, just as they did in the 2020-21 season. In 2021-22, the company will also perform a live fandango for families in Langley Park, Maryland, as part of The Clarice’s popular Family Art Day series.

This event will be performed in The Clarice Courtyard, the lawn area behind The Clarice.  The artists will be on an outdoor stage, and chairs will be provided for the audience.  Audience members are invited to use the front entrance of The Clarice, and can then find the courtyard by traveling up the grand staircase or taking the elevator to Floor 2.  Ushers will be present to assist you and answer questions.  Based on current UMD campus guidelines and Prince George’s County guidelines for outdoor events, the artists will not wear masks during the performance. The audience will also not be required to wear masks while seated during the performance. These guidelines are subject to change, and you will receive the most up to date COVID-19 Health and Safety rules in an email prior to your event.

Health + Safety

There may be COVID safety policies such as mask requirements in place when you attend this event. Please see our health & safety page for the most up to date information about attendance!



About the Artists


The Clarice is committed to creating extensive opportunities for our campus and community to engage with Visiting Artists throughout the season. During their time with The Clarice, artists from En Garde Arts will have engaged in:

  • A Family Art Day at Adelphi Manor Park in partnership with Langley Park Community Center
  • Visited classes in the UMD School of Music
  • Visited classes in the UMD School of Theatre, Dance, and Performance Studies


  • Mariposa: Jen Anaya*
  • Rafaela: Silvia Dionicio*
  • Rogelio: Efrén Olson-Sánchez
  • Sinuhé, Lead Musician: Sinuhé Padilla
  • Elvin: Danny Ray Caraballo
  • Pili: Frances Ines Rodriguez
  • Johan: Roberto Tolentino*
  • Musician: Tania Mesa


  • Music Direction, Spanish Song Lyrics, Zapateado Choreography: Sinuhé Padilla
  • Scenic Design: Johnny Moreno
  • Lighting Design: Lucrecia Briceno
  • Sound Design: Marcelo Añez
  • Costume Design: Fabian Fidel Aguilar
  • Choreography: Alexandra Beller
  • Production Stage Manager: Alejandra Maldonado*
  • Assistant Stage Manager & Lighting Supervisor: Erica Zippel Schnitzer
  • Audio Engineer & Supervisor: Iris Zacarias
  • Production Managers: David D’Agostino & Sarah George
  • Translation of English script to Spanish: Mariana Carreño King
  • English Song Lyrics and Translation of Spanish interviews: Andrea Thome
  • Supertitles Creator: Daniela Thome
  • Casting: Elsie Stark/Stark Naked Productions
  • Props Associate: Ammy Roth
  • Associate Costume Designer: Raphael Regan
  • Assistant Set Designer: Katie Scibelli
  • Assistant Lighting Designer: Paul Vallaincourt
  • Wardrobe Supervisor: Jonathan Emmerick
  • Technical Director: Steven Brenman


  • Founder & Artistic Director: Anne Hamburger
  • Executive Director: Heather Cohn
  • Consulting General Manager: Amanda Cooper
  • Assistant to the Producers: Thai Singer
  • Management Services: Lucille Lortel Foundation, George Forbes, Alana Canty-Samuel
  • Fall 2021 Graduate Intern: Connor Scully


En Garde Arts is a not-for-profit theatrical production company that creates, produces and presents bold theatre experiences that reach across artistic, physical and social boundaries. From 1985 until 1999, En Garde Arts was the first exclusively site-specific theatre company in New York, re-envisioning the city as a stage with that intertwined story with location in Central Park, Penn Yards, East River Park, the Chelsea Hotel, the Meatpacking District and beyond. En Garde was honored with six OBIEs, two Drama Desk Awards, and an Outer Critics Circle Special Award—with The New York Times proclaiming the organization to be “an invigorating urban presence.”

After a 14-year hiatus, artistic director Anne Hamburger returned from running a global division for Disney, and En Garde Arts made a triumphant, mission-driven return to NYC with BASETRACK Live at the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM), which was named one of the top ten productions of the year by The New York Times, BASETRACK then went on a 40-city national tour that culminated with performances at the military base Fort Hood in Texas. En Garde’s Fandango for Butterflies (and Coyotes) inspired by interviews with undocumented immigrants from Latin America living in New York, was a New York Times Critic’s Pick and is now making its return after closing early in 2020 due to the pandemic. In 2019, En Garde Arts’ launched a new developmental series Uncommon Voices that was featured in 8 episodes by WNET’s ALL ARTS and can be seen on

When the pandemic shut down theaters across the country, En Garde harkened back to its site-specific roots, kicking off with an outdoor stoop performance Uncommon Voices: Unexpected Places in October 2020, which the NYC Street Activity Permit Office deemed “A trailblazer for pop-up cultural events to come.” And in May 2021, En Garde Arts produced two in-person live events in Lower Manhattan. A Dozen Dreams—the culmination of a year of creative conversations and the tireless work of dozens of artists—a labyrinth of 12 beautifully designed dreamscapes, each a unique multi-dimensional representation of the pandemic dreams of a dozen women playwrights. And Downtown Live, a new performing arts festival with 36 performances over two weekends, presented by The Downtown Alliance in association with The Tank, offered live theatre, contemporary performance and music from a lineup that featured many Obie Award and Pulitzer Prize winners, as well as emerging voices.

En Garde Arts is proud to be employing upwards of 200 artists and arts workers in 2021.

En Garde Arts is incredibly grateful to the supporters of our work who have helped to make it possible for us to continue to enrich the cultural landscape. As an independent producing organization, we aim to produce risk-taking, socially important work that will have lasting impact.



Music Direction, Spanish Song Lyrics, Zapateado Choreography: Sinuhé Padilla

Scenic Design: Johnny Moreno

Lighting Design: Lucrecia Briceno

Sound Design: Marcelo Añez

Costume Design: Fabian Fidel Aguilar

Choreography: Alexandra Beller

Production Stage Manager: Alejandra Maldonado*

Assistant Stage Manager & Lighting Supervisor: Erica Zippel Schnitzer

Audio Engineer & Supervisor: Iris Zacarias

Production Managers: David D’Agostino & Sarah George

Translation of English script to Spanish: Mariana Carreño King

English Song Lyrics and Translation of Spanish interviews: Andrea Thome

Supertitles Creator: Daniela Thome

Casting: Elsie Stark/Stark Naked Productions

Props Associate: Ammy Roth

Associate Costume Designer: Raphael Regan

Assistant Set Designer: Katie Scibelli

Assistant Lighting Designer: Paul Vallaincourt

Wardrobe Supervisor: Jonathan Emmerick

Technical Director: Steven Brenman


Jen Anaya (Mariposa) (they/them) is a theater/music/art/ritual space maker, doula and energy healer from the desert of Yavapaiv Apache, Cocopah and O'odham land. They have performed in/created for rock bands, web series, art installations, plays, operas, dance theater, films, solo shows, healing rituals and musicals throughout New York City, Turtle Island and beyond. A proud child of immigrants, Jen is honored to be part of this important and beautiful piece. Love and gratitude to the team and my soul family.


Danny Ray Caraballo (Elvin) is proud and excited to join this beautiful fandango to tell these stories! He is a Latinx, Cleveland, OH born performer now based out of Brooklyn, New York. He owes and thanks both of his parents for every one of his blessings in life. National/TV credits include Figgy in Bettor Days (ESPN+), Ritchie Valens in Buddy! The Buddy Holly Musical (US Tour), Night Ninja in PJ Masks Save The Day! (US Tour). Regional credits include In The Heights, Newsies, Huck and Holden, Chicago and Hello Dolly.


Silvia Dionicio (Rafaela) is making her second appearance on an Equity Off Broadway show and she’s beyond honored to bring to life Rafaela’s story. In 2016, the Dominican government granted her a unique  scholarship to study acting in New York. Ever since, she’s performed all around New York City, including the Off-Broadway shows: The Last Jew of Boyle Heights (Actor’s Temple) and Black Panther Women (NYTW), among others. Additionally, Dionicio is quickly making a name for herself on Film/TV: Legacy (Sundance), New Amsterdam (NBC), Wu-Tang (HULU), Grave’s Mysteries (ID) and In Pursuit (TLC). 

Efrén Olson-Sánchez (Rogelio) is a Mexican Physical Actor who has brought his craft to different places like México, Cuba, Canada, Venezuela, United States, England, Colombia, Ecuador and Spain. He graduated from LACC Theatre Academy. He has trained in several physical/dance techniques such as Aerial Dance, Contact Improv, Tap, Pantomime, Contemporary Dance, Ballet, Jazz, Viewpoints, Suzuki, Biomechanics, Devising, Butoh Dance, Cyr Wheel, Trapeze, Vertical Dance -Wall Harness-, Fabric/Sling/Cocoon, Aereal Yoga, Clowning, Animal Flow and Lecoq, among others.

Frances Ines Rodriguez (Pili) is a proud Latinx/Filipinx actor, musician, production stage manager, lights and sound engineer, performing in their debut role, after spending over 15 years behind the scenes. Frances Ines has stage managed at Williamstown Theatre Festival and Ars Nova, and frequently works at burlesque and drag venues throughout Manhattan and Brooklyn in New York. A graduate of Florida State University, Frances Ines grew up in a three language immigrant household and is proudly fluent in Spanglish-Bisayan, proficient in numerous instruments and comfortable on stage thanks to years of calling the theatre home. They are a student of Meisner at the Matthew Corozine Studio. Look out for their debut album, Franky and the MoMos.

Roberto Tolentino (Johan) is an actor living in New York City. He continues to investigate how theater can be an instrument of positive change in both individuals and society and is so happy to be a part of a production that attempts to do just that. Roberto is a proud graduate of the University of California, Santa Barbara, where he completed a B.S. in Biology and. B.F.A in Acting. He recently graduated from Columbia University and is eager for what’s ahead.

Tania Mesa (Musician) is a crossover-style violinist and singer from Canary Islands (Spain). She studied classical violin (ESMUC-Barcelona) and contemporary music at Berklee. She has toured worldwide with The World Orchestra (UNESCO), the Berklee Silent Film Orchestra, with well known artists such as Manolo García, J. Manuel Serrat and performed with Dream Theater and Alejandro Sanz. She recorded Spanish vocals for the Walt Disney Company film Fucsia, the Mini Witch. In the theater world she has performed as a singer, violinist and acting at National Theatre of Catalonia and Caixaforum auditoriums (Barcelona-Madrid) as well as other productions in the USA including the premiere of Fandango for Butterflies. She has performed and recorded with celebrated flamenco artists: Josemi Carmona, Antonio Serrano or José Mercé on his album Doy la Cara  (with Javier Limón) nominated for a Latin Grammy. She performed with Grammy winners Terence Blanchard, Pablo Ziegler and Jacob Collier. Mesa is the newest member of the NYC band Jarana Beat and leads her own original music band Tania Mesa & The Mediterranean Soul.



Andrea Thome (Playwright) is a Chilean/Costa Rican-American playwright whose work navigates multiple languages and landscapes, often experimenting with the nature of theatrical collaboration. Recent works include the theatrical installation A Dozen Dreams (also commissioned by En Garde Arts), Pinkolandia (INTAR, Two River Theater, Salvage Vanguard, 16th Street Theater; translated into Russian), a modern 'translation' of Cymbeline (Play On!/Oregon Shakespeare Festival), Troy (created with the Public Theater’s ACTivate Ensemble) and others. Plays in development include Purgatorio Wonderland and an untitled EST/Sloan commission about an astronomer from Muslim Spain. Andrea's translations of Latin American plays include Guillermo Calderón’s Neva (Public Theater, CTG, La Jolla Playhouse) and Rodrigo García's You Should Have Stayed Home, Morons (CTG/Radar LA). Thome co-directs the Latina satire collective fulana (, directs the Lark’s Mexico-U.S. Playwright Exchange Program, and teaches at SUNY Purchase. Awards and residencies include: Helen Merrill Award (2021), Art Equity Persephone Grant (2020), MacDowell (Thornton Wilder Fellow), Blue Mountain Center, SPACE on Ryder Farm, and New Dramatists.

José Zayas (Director) has directed over 100 productions in NYC, as well as regionally and internationally. Credits include: The Magnetic Fields: 50 Song Memoir (BAM, Mass MoCa, US and European Tour), A Nonesuch Celebration (BAM), In The Name of Salome, Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter, The House of the Spirits (Repertorio Español). He has premiered work by Caridad Svich, Thomas Bradshaw, Duncan Sheik, Taylor Mac, Andrea Thome, Marco Antonio Rodriguez, Saviana Stanescu, Rob Urbinati, Catherine Filloux, Gerardo Cardenas, among others. Drama League Fellow, Lincoln Center’s Director’s Lab, SoHo Rep Writers/Director’s Lab, NEA/TCG Career Development Program for Directors, lifetime member of EST, Resident Director: Repertorio Español. Born in Puerto Rico, Zayas graduated from Harvard and Carnegie Mellon.


Sinuhé Padilla (Composer, Musician, Music Director) is a Mexican musicologist, producer, composer, and artistic director. As Founder of Jarana Records, he has released diverse productions for artists like Ilana Martin, Sonia de los Santos, Calpulli Mexican Dance Company, Mireya Ramos, Shae Fiol (Mariachi Flor de Toloache), Veronica Valerio, Alea, Flor Bromley, Bilingual Birdies, and many more. He's the director of Jarana Beat, winner for Best Folk Contemporary Band at the Mexican Music Awards 2015 and has also received recognition from NYC for his contribution to Latin culture. As a multi-instrumentalist, Sinuhé has collaborated with multi grammy award winners like Lila Downs, Residente and Ana Tijoux. His music has been part of productions like National Geographic, Mundo (Firmes), Taco Chronicles by Netflix, Storyhunter TV, and The United Nations. Sinuhé continues encouraging fandango communities in New York City, across the country and in different cities of South America and Spain. 

Alexandra Beller (Choreographer) has been choreographer for Sense and Sensibility (Bedlam at sites nationwide)––(Helen Hayes Award, Lortel Nomination, IRNE nomination). She choreographed the Off Broadway musical, The Mad Ones (59E59), Bedlam’s Peter Pan (Duke Theatre), Two Gentlemen of Verona (Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival), As You Like It (Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival, Folger Shakespeare Library), How to Transcend a Happy Marriage by Sarah Ruhl (Lincoln Center Theatre), The Young Ladies of… (Taylor Mac), Chang(e) (HERE) and others. Current projects include Antonio’s Song by Dael Orlandersmith/Antonio Suarez (CATF, Milwaukee Rep) and making her directorial debut with Make Thick My Blood, a two-person adaptation of Macbeth, opening Off-Broadway July 2022. Alexandra holds BFA/Dance, MFA/Dance and CMA (Certified Movement Analyst) in Laban Movement Analysis/Bartenieff Fundamentals. She is on faculty at Princeton, Laban Insitute for Movement Studies and adjuncts throughout the U.S. She has run the arts organization, Alexandra Beller/Dances since 2002.

Johnny Moreno (Scenic Design) is a production designer and filmmaker working in Theater, Film and Live Music. He works internationally as a concert video director and designer with multi Grammy Award winning singer Lila Downs. He is a producer, cameraman and additional editor on the indie feature film I Am A Seagull, Executive Producer of the award winning short film Early Light and Cinematographer on Space Dogs, a filmed theater project (MCC). Recent design work includes Whitney White’s Definition: an Installation Experience (Bushwick Starr), Fandango for Butterflies (and Coyotes). Additional credits include En Garde Arts tour (Scenic / Video), For All the Women Who Thought They Were Mad at Soho Rep (video/projections), A Grave is Given Supper at New Ohio Theater & Teatro Dallas (Production / Video Design), Installation: Sweet Crude (Video Sculpture Anna Kustera Gallery), Tiffany & Co. Mapping Installation (Guggenheim Museum) and As Above So Below (Manhattan Bridge Mapping Installation, Dumbo Arts Festival).


Lucrecia Briceno (Lighting Design) is a Peruvian artist currently based in Brooklyn, New York. Much of her work has been in association with artists developing innovative and original pieces. Her work includes theatre, opera, puppetry and dance, as well as collaborations in several non-performance projects. Internationally, her work has been seen in Venezuela, Peru, Turkey, Scotland, South Korea, Colombia, Norway and England. She is an associate artist with The Civilians, a Core Member of Anonymous Ensemble, a resident designer with Pregones Theatre/PRTT and La Micro.

Marcelo Añez (Sound Design) has more than three decades of experience and has won four Grammy Awards for his work in the music industry. Recent post-2020 theater work include sound design for Flako Jimenez's Taxilandia, which earned a Critic's Pick by The New Yorkr Times, and sound design for HERSTORY directed by Gisela Cardenas during Ice Factory 2021. Fandango For Butterflies (and Coyotes) was his last theater job before the pandemic broke out, so it has a special meaning to reconnect with this work. He is glad to be working again with this team!

Fabian Fidel Aguilar (Costume Design) attended the Yale School of Drama for his M.F.A. and Boston University (B.F.A.) to pursue theatrical costume design. Credits include Naked Mole Rat Gets Dressed, Max Makes a Million, Winnie the Pooh  (Alliance Theater), Slow Food (Dorset Theater Festival), Afterglow, Safeword (Midnight Theatricals), Recent Alien Abductions (Play Co.): Mlima’s Tale, In the Heights, Man of La Mancha, Romeo and Juliet (Westport Country Playhouse); ¡Bienvenidos Blancos! or Welcome White People! (Team Sunshine, Philadelphia), A View from the Bridge, Seven Spots on the Sun, Set and Costume for The War Boys (NYC); Sotto Voce (Portland Stage); Midsummer; The Moors (Yale Repertory Theater world premiere); He Left Quietly (SummerWorks Performance Festival, Toronto). In his spare time he likes to paint watercolors.

Alejandra Maldonado-Morales (Production Stage Manager) is a well-rounded theatre person with experience in stage and production management, acting, designing and direction. Recent works include El Velorio de la Comay (BAAD-NY), The Story of the Woman of the Sea (Casa Cruz de la Luna, Clemente Soto Vélez-NY), Teach, Teacher, Teachest (One-Eight, INTAR, NY), Hageografías (CCL, Pregones-NY), Salomé (UPRR-PR), Verano, Verano (Iati, NY), Venus y el Albañil (Loisaida Center-NY), The Maids (One-Eight, INTAR Theatre-NY), The Marquis De Sade is Afraid of the Sea (CCL, INTAR Theater-NY), Lying Lydia (Caborca, Cuba), Native Nation (Cornerstone Theater, ASU-AZ), La Mujer Maravilla (Hudson Church-NY). 

David D’Agostino (Production Manager) is thrilled to continue his work on this production! National tours include Finding Neverland, Pippin, Million Dollar Quartet, Memphis: The Musical and Wizard of Oz. David has had the pleasure of working across the United States and Canada and formerly ran “The PiTCH!,” a workshop for new musicals presented by the Fingerlakes Musical Theatre Festival. He is proud to be able to work on new productions that are so current and relevant to today’s culture, including American Underground with Barrington Stage Company. Thanks to Mom, Dad, and Alex. ¡Bienvenidos al Fandango!

Sarah George (Production Manager) is a film and theater producer and production manager based in Brooklyn, New York. Recent work includes Notes On My Mother’s Decline (The Play Company, NYTW Next Door), Nothing Gold Can Stay (Partial Comfort Productions, A.R.T. NY), Plano (Clubbed Thumb, Connelly Theater), 14th Annual Summerworks Series (Clubbed Thumb, Wild Project), 2019 Lab Series (Target Margin Theater) and Spaceman (Loading Dock Theatre Co, Wild Project). She’s very excited to help bring Fandango to more audiences! 

Erica Zippel Schnitzer  (Assistant Stage Manager and Lighting Supervisor) (she/her) is a Brooklyn-based Theater Maker. Select credits include Open Call (The Shed), A Dozen Dreams (EnGarde Arts), The Great Hunger by Kallan Dana (The Tank), Playdate by Kallan Dana (Dixon Place), Plastic Bag Store by Robin Frohardt (Pomegranate Arts), What The Constitution Means to Me by Heidi Schreck (NYTW), The Recipe (The Momentary), Black Light by Daniel Alexander Jones (Greenwich House Theater) and Mile Long Opera (The Office Arts). 


Daniela Thome (Supertitles Creator) has loved working with Pop Up Theatrics, The Lark, INTAR, Identity Theatre and La Micro among others, helping to collaboratively tell stories through a unique lens. In her bilingual solo show, she played the saxophone throughout her own multicultural journey. She has developed other plays through a Make Room Residency, The PGE and NY Madness. Es un honor trabajar en la obra de mi hermana y contar las historias de los indocumentados.

Iris Zacarias (Sound Engineer) (she/they) is a sound designer and engineer making her New York City mixing debut with En Garde Arts! With a background in theatre and circus, Iris has engineered for productions on and off the road with Teatro Zinzanni, Circus Smirkus, and Seattle Children’s Theatre. She would like to thank her sisters and friends for all their love and support. Thank you and enjoy the show!

Mariana Carreño King (Script Translation) is a playwright, director and translator. She has translated the plays Schnauzer Duck by Saúl Enríquez, They Say… by Juan Carlos Vives and Decomposition by Alfonso Cárcamo; the book Loves that Kill by Rosa Beltrán, as well as many articles for different publications in the United States and in Latin America. Her plays have been developed by Humanitas Play LA, LAByrinth Theatre Company, Intar and Mabou Mines, among others. Mariana is part of the Advisory Committee for The Lark’s US/Mexico Playwright Exchange, member of LAByrinth Theatre Company, and Alumna, Hispanic Playwrights in Residency Lab (HPRL). Mariana teaches Playwriting at SUNY Purchase.

Program Notes


“I didn't write this play alone. It was born from and shaped by the voices of many: those of the generous people who allowed me to interview them, some of whom knew me for years and others to whom I was new, but who nevertheless entrusted me with their stories; the voices of my own migrant parents and our family's journeys from Chile and Costa Rica and back and forth again, and those of my relatives forced into exile, whose freedom of movement was taken away; the voices of my collaborators sharing their own immigrant stories; and those whose voices I didn't get to know personally, but whose histories and ingenuity, cries and songs fill the city, its spaces, the air we take in, and whom we encounter every day, even if we don't realize it—or close our eyes and ears to it.   

“So when you listen to this play, you are also hearing the "real" Mariposa, and also the cousins Rédin, Sergio and Jhonatan, and the young Bronxite Manuela, and the unstoppable Pilar Perez, who can now share her full name and who dedicates her life to working with students and teachers and, together, creating new inventions and ways of seeing (and trying to fix) the world. And Adriana V., a dear friend and artist who had to reinvent herself here, and Teresa who helps others escape from abuse, and all of the actors and artists who shared their time and hearts to help this piece find itself along the way—including the NYC fandangueros who invited me (and all of us) into their community with such warmth.

“To emigrate is a radical act of imagination. You leave your home, most everything and everyone you know and love, the person you were—in order to move down an uncertain (and often dangerous) path, towards a place you've never been. You must picture yourself in this imagined place, living an imagined existence. How will you move through that world? How will people treat you? How will you re-create yourself—or can you? It's an act of transformation that requires a caterpillar's surrender and sense of purpose and vision that transcends immediate, earth-bound circumstances, and the fragility and persistence of a butterfly who keeps flying through hardship and hostility. And it needs coyotes—from the Nahuatl word "coyotl"—who help or hinder you on that path. Figures who embody duality, like the Aztec deity Huehuecoyotl, they can cause mischief and harm, but are also storytellers who can seduce other gods and slyly circumvent obstacles, finding and opening new paths, not just on land but in our souls.

“Thank you for coming with us on this journey.”

—Andrea Thome


Fandango for Butterflies (and Coyotes) premiered in New York in February of 2020 at La MaMa. Written by Andrea Thome, directed by Jose Zayas and composed by Sinuhé Padilla, it was the result of over two and a half years of development, a new theatrical production bringing the stories of undocumented immigrants to light. They came from Latin America and come together on the evening of an ICE raid for a fandango, a celebration of music and dance. They face worries about their families back home and frustration at an inability to see them, perhaps ever again, fears for their loved one's safety coming over the border and fears for their own safety, so they come together to find community through song and dance. The production sold out at La MaMa, was a The New York Times Critic's Pick and then embarked on a five borough tour when it was shut down due to Covid just as we had loaded into Lehman Stages in the Bronx. 

It's a testament to the strength of Fandango that it's coming back, despite Covid, despite the passage of time. Sadly, with the crisis at our southern border and the exodus of refugees from Afghanistan, it is more relevant today than ever before. Fandango was not only a labor of love for En Garde Arts, but lives on through the partnership of our creative collaborators: developmental support at the Orchard Project, production support from La MaMa, LaGuardia Performing Arts Center, Snug Harbor Cultural Center, Lehman College and special thanks for providing a home for its return to New York, St. Ann & the Holy Trinity Church in New York City. Lastly, we are greatly appreciative of the support we are receiving from Penn State and University of Maryland who are hosting us this year. We are no strangers to either of these campuses and what comes to mind is an oft used phrase, "It takes a village."

With love and appreciation,

—Annie Hamburger