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Four-day festival at UCR celebrates border region

Four-day festival at UCR celebrates border region

(April 20, 2001)

A four-day Festival Fronterizo (border festival), to celebrate the rich artistic fusion of U.S.-Mexico border culture, is coming Tuesday, May 1 through Friday, May 4, to the University of California, Riverside and other Riverside locations.

Chicana playwright and screenwriter Josefina Lopez will open the festival with a reading scheduled at 9 a.m. Tuesday, May 1, at the University Theatre at UCR. Her works examine the dilemmas Chicanas face between the traditions of Latino womanhood and their desires to find fulfillment through careers, art, and sexual freedom.

The events scheduled to take place on campus and in the community lead up to Cinco de Mayo, but the Festival Fronterizo won't include the usual fare, said festival organizer Carlos Morton, professor of theatre at UCR. Sponsors include a variety of UCR-based groups such as the University of California Institute for Mexico and the United States (UCMEXUS), Chicano Student Programs, the Center for Ideas and Society, the Presley Institute on Crime and Delinquency, the Graduate Center for Global Education, and the departments of English and theatre.

Participants span the artistic spectrum from studio art, poetry and student theatre to new musical forms. For instance, the group TRIBU of Mexico City fuses elements of indigenous Mexico with rock 'n roll. Nortec is a Tijuana-based group of DJs who mix banda's polka-like beats with electronica and techno dance rhythms popular in the U.S. and European club scenes.

"We want to present a more avant-garde taste of what border culture is creating now," Morton said. The festival is in its second year and will include venues on the UCR campus, University Village, Zacatecas Café, and the Getaway Café in Bannockburn Village.

Maps and directions to events at UCR are available at information kiosks located at the University Avenue and the Canyon Crest Drive campus entrances, or on the campus web site Visitor parking costs up to $6 per vehicle. Parking for events after 4 p.m. cost $3 per vehicle.

For more information, call UC MEXUS at (909) 787-3519, Carlos Morton at (909) 787-3871, or Alfredo Figueroa, director of Chicano Student Programs at (909) 787-3821.

The University of California, Riverside ( is a doctoral research university, a living laboratory for groundbreaking exploration of issues critical to Inland Southern California, the state and communities around the world. Reflecting California's diverse culture, UCR's enrollment has exceeded 21,000 students. The campus opened a medical school in 2013 and has reached the heart of the Coachella Valley by way of the UCR Palm Desert Center. The campus has an annual statewide economic impact of more than $1 billion.

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