GALA Hispanic Theatre presents POETIC CHICLE / The Return of Loco Culebra

 Entertainment   Wed, March 06, 2019 09:19 AM

Washington, D.C.- GALA Hispanic Theatre continues its 43rd season with Poetic Chicle – The Return of Loco Culebra, written and performed by Quique Avilés, one of Washington’s leading Latino artists and social commentators. Directed by B. Stanley, this bilingual solo show with English surtitles will be presented on March 15 and March 16, 2019 at 8 pm at GALA Theatre, 3333 14th Street, NW.  A post-performance discussion with the artist will follow each presentation.

In Poetic Chicle, Avilés returns to the stage as Loco Culebra, defender of los cafecitos, whom God has sent to earth to check on the state of refugees and immigrants in the Trump era. Through Loco Culebra, we follow Chamba, a Salvadoran child chicle vendor, who travels over three decades and three borders to the United States, where he gets an education, marries, and becomes a citizen. Chamba’s American dream, however, is threatened when President Trump ends temporary protected status for his mother and thousands of others who now face deportation.  

The presentation features a recording of an original song by legendary Salvadoran singer-songwriter Lilo González, with percussionist Iván Navas and keyboard player Mike Wheaton. 


Quique Avilés is a poet, performer, and teacher. Originally from El Salvador, he has been writing, performing, and leading community arts projects in the Washington, DC area for more than 35 years.  A graduate of the Duke Ellington School of the Arts, he co-founded the LatiNegro Theater Collective (1985) and Sol & Soul (1999), both of which created socially-conscious art with people from the community. He has written and performed over 10 one-man shows addressing issues of race, identity, and the plight of the poor, which have been presented at theaters and universities throughout the U.S., Mexico City, and San Salvador. Avilés’ poetry and commentary have been featured on NPR’s Latino USA and This I Believe, and in several anthologies, including “How I Learned English”, “Al Pie de la Casa Blanca”, and “The Wandering Song”, a new anthology of Central American writers in the U.S.  He maintains a continuous presence in the community, leading writing and performance projects at community centers, schools, and universities, and with leadership programs and organizing campaigns. From 2005 to 2017, he was the Director of Paso Nuevo, GALA’s award-winning youth theater program and is currently a faculty member at The Theatre Lab.

B. Stanley (Director) is an actor, director, puppeteer, performance artist, and pedagogue. He started the experimental group, Theatre Du Jour in Washington, DC in1982; opened their theater at 14th and T Streets NW in 1983; and created the Java Rama, a performance coffee house the following year. From 1989 to 1993 he trained under Ingemar Lindh at the Istituto Di Arte Scenica (Institute for Scenic Art) in Pontremoli, Italy. Since 1994 he has been the Executive Artistic Director of the District of Columbia Arts Center (DCAC) in Adams Morgan. In addition to his work with Theatre Du Jour, he has performed with The Living Theatre, The Puppet Company, Guillermo Gómez Peña, Cherry Red Productions and has directed the plays of authors such as Antonin Artaud, Alfred Jarry, and Nicolai Evreinov. A veteran of many solo performances, he has played such luminaries as Theo van Gogh and Don Juan, and is currently working on a one-man show about Theodore Roosevelt. He has collaborated with many performance poets and has been in league with Quique Avilés since 1996.


General admission tickets to Poetic Chicle are $20 each.  Tickets for groups of 10 or more are $15 each. FOR TICKETS, CALL (202) 234-7174 or visit

Parking is available at a discount price of $4 in the Giant Food garage on Park Road, NW with validation in GALA lobby. GALA Theatre is one block north of the Columbia Heights metro station on the Green and Yellow lines.


GALA is a Partner of the National Performance Network (NPN). This project is made possible in part by support from the NPN Artist Engagement Fund. Major contributors include the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts (a federal agency). For more information visit


Dubraska Vale / 202-234-7174 /