Since its inception in 1986, the International Hispanic Theatre Festival has evolved into a globally recognized, multilingual, multiethnic cultural event. It is the only theater festival of its kind in the United States. Teatro Avante’s artistic director and chief organizer of the festival, Mario Ernesto Sanchez, has made it a priority to focus each year’s festivities on the artistic element of Latin American plays while exposing Miamians to diverse productions from varied cultures. Some productions tell touching and unique stories, such as Mexico’s Cuerdas (Ropes), about three brothers who meet their father, who abandoned them as children and is now the world’s most famous tightrope walker. Then there’s Spain’s Decir Lluvia y Que Llueva (Just Say Rain and It Rains), an eclectic array of dance theater fused with visual poetry, dialogue, music, and heart-stopping action. Its premise is simple: The characters come to a meeting point that changes their lives forever. But the soul of the thrilling show is in the dazzling visuals, including cascading water and a fantastical, surreal set. See Decir Lluvia y Que Llueva at Thursday and Friday at the Arsht Center’s Carnival Studio Theater. See Cuerdas Saturday at 8:30 p.m. and Sunday at 5 p.m. Both productions are in Spanish with no translation. The fest runs through July 24.
July 14-17, 8:30 p.m., 2011


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