New in 2017 John Leguizamo schools his son - and the rest of us - on the buried and forgotten history of Latinos in the Americas in this one-man show about uncovering the truth, and recovering from the past.
From the producers: When his son gets a school assignment on heroes, John seizes the chance to teach him all about the great minds of the Latino world. But once he sets out on his irreverent crash course across three continents and 3000 years of history - from conquistadores to cumbia, Montezuma to Menudo, and taking on the characters in all of it - he uncovers provocative truths that shock even him. Uproarious, uncensored, and undeniably entertaining, "Latin History for Morons" schools all of us in the heroes of the past, and those present right at home.
Emmy and Obie Award winner John Leguizamo’s acclaimed one-man shows include "Mambo Mouth," "Spic-O-Rama," and "Freak," which enjoyed a successful run on Broadway in 1998. "Latin History" marks Leguizamo's sixth solo venture onto the stage. The production premiered in an acclaimed engagement at Berkeley Repertory Theater in California, followed by an Off Broadway run at the Public Theater earlier this year. Here's a trailer from the Berkeley Rep production:
Leguizamo’s film credits include "To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar," "Moulin Rouge!,"The Happening," as well as the voice of Sid the Sloth in the "Ice Age" series of animated films.
[Leguizamo] keeps up the energy he's known for...His takes on everyone from Sigmund Freud to Andrew Jackson are righteously funny, if bordering on the obscene, and there are some pointed messages about immigration issues. But attempts to keep things current with passing references to Harvey Weinstein and Kevin Spacey fall flat. We see a more mature Leguizamo here, sharing the universal struggles of parenting and acknowledging that he doesn't have all the answers. Clearly, he is counting himself among those morons.
A sobering expression of political urgency that reflects its star's maturation as a Latino public figure..."Latin History" is a fluid piece of theater, too, which gives it an adaptive quality. [The show] is boisterous and joyful but also laced with sorrow, with Leguizamo beautifully communicating feelings of invisibility, inherited trauma, and even grief. Leguizamo isn't merely teaching us what we've never been taught. He's giving us a space to cheer and cry, to laugh and listen.