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Palenque político (1999) Photo/Foto: HIDVL
  • Title: Palenque político
  • Alternate Title: Political cockpit
  • Holdings: video (HIDVL)
  • Duration: 01:33:08
  • Language: Spanish
  • Date: NOV 1999
  • Location: Teatro Bar El Hábito, Mexico City
  • Type-Format: performance
  • Cast: Jesusa Rodríguez, writer, director, producer ; Liliana Felipe, producer, music.
  • Credits: Jesusa Rodríguez, writer, director, producer ; Liliana Felipe, producer, music.

Palenque político (1999)

In this "political/ poetical/ philosophical/ musical" cabaret performance, Jesusa Rodríguez and Liliana Felipe take on Mexico's electoral climate in order to pose a comment on ethics, politics, Mexican folklore and pop culture. Rodríguez populates the scenario of the "palenque"("cockpit," a place for popular gambling games like cockfighting) with chameleonic characters Chona Schopenhauer ("the only ranchera philosopher"), Pita Amor (an old-fashioned, affected performer of poetry) and Don Andrés Soler (a very macho, politically conservative old man), among others, through which the artist criticizes the corruption and violence associated with Mexico's political climate. In a "phenomenology of fortuitous becoming," the universe is portrayed as "a palenque where anything could happen," and Mexican electoral processes as a "gamble." In this vein, and interspersed with parodic renditions of traditional folk songs by Rodríguez and "sexy ranchera" Isela Vega (a famous Mexican vedette), the audience is invited to play a satirical Mexican "lotería" (with cards like "The Wetback," "The Zapatista," "The First Lady," and "The ATM" substituting the traditional icons of this popular game) and to gamble, control, and judge an electoral "cockfight" where puppets of political candidates race to be the first to reach the finishing line of Mexico's presidency.