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[xmca] La Colmenita "The Little Beehive"
I intend to acquaint the group with a children musical theater
company, a Cuban one.
A group which is UNICEF Good Will Ambassador and very much appreciated
by IATA (International Amateur Theater Association) and other
It is a non formal art group in Cuban society..I mean, even though
under Ministry of Culture, children devote their after school time to
the group...it is not a formal art school etc
This is a children theater group where children play, not the adults...
Their site is: http://www.lacolmenitadecuba.cult.cu/
Unfortunately only in Spanish.
The first book on the group in the world, even before Cuba, is
published in Turkey in 2007, a compilation of materials in Spanish and
English translated into Turkish. (Editor and English translation: Ulvi
Icil, Spanish translation Esra Karakose)
The group now published its magazine's 3rd issue which is published 4
issues a year. The magazine is bilingual, in Spanish and in English,
52 pages. English texts are not partial. Each article is fully in both
English and Spanish.
I do not think that it reaches Cuban embassies worldwide, it is rather
distributed freely in Cuba. But the magazine is really wonderful and
rich in content, full of colours and photographs.
Those who may intend to follow the group and study or get informaton
on it, may apply to Cuban embassies. I suggest Cuban authorities will
help to provide the magazine.
There are many interesting characteristics of this children group.
For instance, parents (not only mothers and fathers but also grand
mothers and fathers too) take an active part in the work of the group
and not only to sew the dresses but also to help children to learn
their citations in the plays.
So, the group is more than like, it is a real family and all kinds of
interactions take place freely and very constructively - between
peers, between adults, between children and adults - developmentally a
really enjoyable atmosphere for both the children and the adults.
Second, absolute condition to be a member of the group is academic
success in the school, not to neglect lessons.
Third, in fact, the group does not bring up artists. Children leave
the group on 15th and many of them go to schools unrelated with art.
What the group is aiming at is to use the theater as a means for
collective work, as a means for the internalization of ethical values,
culture. Indeed, the director says that in La Colmenita ethical
education leads artistic education.
Fourth, children play very freely, in fact they play not as in theater
but rather as play, as ordinary play. So, one of the the group's and
director's top sensibilities is to avoid to create mini divas or mini
stars. But the result is really professional quite far to the one of
such similar attemps which end making the children play like
Fifth, they have an incredible energy and dynamism. Foundedn in 1990,
they toured the world:
USA 2003, Germany 2002-2003, Belgium (2001) , Denmark (2005), France
(2001, 2005), Spain (2007-6-5-4-2; 8 times! ); Japan (2000) , Mexique
(2000), Venezueala (2000), Turkey (2008)
They should have come to San Diego in March 2003 ! In addition to San
Francisco, Los Angeles
They are able to play two times a day during one consecutive month or so...
They have many friends worldwide , e.g. Patch Adams being one of their
Sixth, the group states that they intend to position art close to
family and school.
Seventh and last but perhaps the most important one, they play rarely
in theaters, but rather in hospitals, streets, schools (special
education schools), areas affected heavily by hurricanes. They execute
really social functions.
This is just a brief information.
I think the group deserves really a special attention for those
working in the area of education, culture, play, adult-child
interaction and others.
Anyone can feel free to contact me for asking for more information. I
will be happy more than happy to do that.
P.S. The name of the director is Carlos Alberto Cremata, he lost his
father in Miami mafia's (Luis Posada Carriles and Orlando Bosch Avila)
sabotage in 1976 to a civil airplane in full flight on the air over
Barbados, where 73 people died, 57 Cubans, some others Korean, in the
delegation of culture and Guyanese students of medicine, studying
freely in Cuba. He is graduated from Higher Art Institute in Havana.
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