Information provided by El Teatro Campesino.
After almost 50 years of El Teatro Campesino performing holiday plays at the Old Mission San Juan Bautista, installation of pews have forced out the annual theatrical presentations of “La Virgen del Tepeyac” and “La Pastorela,“ according to a recent press release.
El Teatro will hold “La Pastorela” performances at the ETC Playhouse this holiday season, located at 705 Fourth Street in San Juan Bautista.
The installation of pews, required for safety, eliminated the main performance areas in the crucero (center) of the Mission, the press release said.
It continues to say, “It is estimated that over 250,000 people have attended the shows over the last 48 years!” Over 2,000 artists, musicians and community members were part of the cast, crew and support teams in that timespan.
In the press release, El Teatro stated its gratitude to Monseñor Amancio Rodriguez, who first opened the doors of the Mission in 1971 with “La Virgen del Tepeyac.” “La Pastorela“ was added to the line up nine years later when rain drove the event out of the San Juan Bautista streets.
“We wish to thank all the subsequent pastors and staff who have sustained our unique Christmas tradition for the five decades,” the press release said. “San Juan Bautista is our spiritual and historical home, so we hope to continue to be able to work on mutually beneficial projects/events in the future.”