A collaboration between Borderlands Theater, UA Mexican American Studies Department & School of Theatre, the University of Arizona’s Bureau of Applied Research in Anthropology; Pima Community College/TRIO Upward Bound, and the Arizona Historical Society.

From Oral History to Theater

The Barrio Stories Project celebrates and preserves the history and heritage of Tucson’s historic Mexican-American barrios. Using a cross-sector process – involving anthropologists, historians, youth, theatre makers, and community – the project collected oral histories from elders who remembered the area known as Barrio Libre or La Calle – a hub of commerce and community celebrations torn down with the building of the Tucson Convention Center in 1968. These narratives form the basis of a new play written by a team of award winning playwrights and produced by nationally recognized Borderlands Theater Company – as a site-specific, outdoor spectacle of theatricality and poetics that is part walking tour, part historical reenactment – on the grounds of the Tucson Convention Center.

Learn More

Audio Talk-backs: Reflections on Barrio Stories by Audience Members

A Vibrant Past

Younger generations have no knowledge that for almost a century, a vibrant Mexican-American enclave once stood in downtown Tucson, testifying to the city’s multicultural character.

Hear the stories