"We started out in 1984 in San Francisco as a kind of weekend lark, putting together some impromptu satire for a Cinco de Mayo celebration," recalls Siguenza. "We haven't really stopped working since."
Traveling an average of 10 months a year, the trio has performed in venues all over the country, including the Mark Taper Forum, the Los Angeles Theatre Center, South Coast Repertory, Magic Theatre, La Jolla Playhouse, San Diego Repertory, the Joseph Papp Public Theatre and Lincoln Center in New York, Seattle Repertory, the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., and numerous universities and colleges. "I guess both the good news and the bad news is that we keep running out of material," comments Montoya. "Latino culture in this country is diverse, always evolving, and there are very real concerns and inequities that must be addressed. The retrospective we are performing at LATC is drawn from our previous work; yet it contains some new pieces because we are always finding subject matter for our particular brand of satire."
Constantly breaking the theatrical "fourth wall" to include the audience in its shenanigans, Anthology is a spirited theatrical outing that underscores the trio's ability to infuse socio-political awareness of Latino life in America with hilariously adroit physicality. "We follow the same street theater, commedia dell'arte traditions that were pioneered by the San Francisco Mime Troupe and Luis Valdez's El Teatro Campesino in the 1960s," affirms Siguenza. "We make sure there is little distance between us and the audience, because they are the life force that keeps us going."
Anthology runs about two hours and 15 minutes, including an intermission. Two lengthy pieces dominate the first act. Satirizing the self-conscious ritualism of The Godfather films, Siguenza offers a burlesque-like portrait of Christopher Columbus as a godfather figure, overseeing the in-fighting between his favored Anglo son (Salinas) and his New World offspring (Montoya), whose mother (guest performer Vivianne Nacif) is the symbol of all native Americans. Proclaiming himself "the first Chicano," Montoya comically destroys the specter of Columbus and his brother for centuries of abuse to Latin Americans, "including Ricky Martin singing, La Vida F***king Loca."