A play that had its start at Otero Junior College will have its premiere in Santa Fe, N.M. At least one family from Las Animas will be there.

Those who were associated with Steve Simpson, former drama coach at Otero Junior College, may remember the production rehearsals of “No Number Home” and the reception with the playwright, Tencha Avila from Las Animas. The production, which turned out to be a reading with a backdrop of the Las Animas suburb/Bent County community where the true story took place, was Nov. 16, 2013.

Tencha Avila was a high school friend of Judy Thomeczek, who already has tickets for the play, which is having its World Premiere production Dec. 12-15 and Dec. 10-22 at the Santa Fe Playhouse, 142 East De Vargas, Santa Fe, NM 87501.

“When Tencha was a little girl during World War II, she walked from the settlement of workers where her family lived to Rixey School near Fort Lyon,” said Thomeczek. “When I knew her, she was very active at Las Animas High School.”

“The play is based on a true story,” said Thomeczek.

The story of the play, as told by Tencha Avila: “It is Christmas time during WW II.  The play opens with the plaintive song of the Posadas and closes with the uplifting song of the Posada.  Fear and turmoil engulfs a colony of Mexican immigrants and their American children when MPs come looking for a soldier. One of their own has gone AWOL.

"The immigrants are determined to protect their families and their dignity and conflicted about whether to help their neighbor in trouble or the police.  It is a story that captures deep family love and conflict and community strife among Chicanos and Mexicans in the United States.  Woven throughout the story are the rich cultural and religious Mexican traditions, fables, folklore and in-grained superstitions.  Another part of the multifaceted fabric of this play is the interplay with white ‘boss’ neighbors, the authority of the church and military authorities.

The play explores the intrinsic human need for love and respect for each other and to hold on to one's dignity.”

The play has that tragi-comedy mix that makes for a lot of laughs as the MPs cannot find the address because the houses are not numbered.

“No Number Home” by Tencha Avila, is directed by Vaughn Irving, Artistic Director, Santa Fe Playhouse. The dates are Dec. 12-15 and Dec. 19-22, Thursday/Friday/Saturday at 7:30 p.m., Sunday at 2 p.m. General Admission is $25; senior, military and educator are $20, students, $15, Preview Tickets Dec. 12 are $15.

The opening reception is Dec. 14 and for that night the tickets are $30. For tickets call 505-989-4262 weekdays between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m.

Email: playhouse @santafeplayhouse.org for more information.

bmcfarren@ljtdmail.com