"Beyond the physical attributes of the show, the work was multi-layered and carried such important messages—some of which were likely apparent to them, and some of which may not have been. But this is actually what we loved about it. It challenged them a bit—to think and to wonder. In other words, to do exactly what art is supposed to do for us! Whenever we present school programming, especially work that carries important social messages, we run the risk of “spoon feeding” those messages to the audience. This work was special because it invites young audiences to think for themselves and participate in interpreting the story.

The connections for those who had studied The Tempest were really important as well, and allowed the students to think about the dancers’ similarities (and differences) to Shakespeare's "Caliban" and the characters they encounter in their own lives who may also be labeled as 'sub-human.' "

                                                     -Denise Ringler (Appalachian State University) 


From the first Caliban with the "I'm from here, we've been here"; that notion is something I think many of us struggle with, being 2nd or 3rd generation in this country and being privileged to be able to travel back and forth between two worlds, and at the same time having that privilege feel like a burden when we are confined to live in the space in between, when you can't "go back" because that "back" isn't yours to go back to.

The piece for the 2nd Caliban was even more heavy, I wanted to yell and scream to defend her, because she was my sister, my friends, my students, me; under attack like so many of us feel we are, but I couldn't. I mean, I suppose I could have because audience response is encouraged, but I was also afraid to do so. I've thought about that a lot, how so often we are afraid to speak out. In the end I think Ella wants us to speak out, to dance out, to let our lights shine without fear, and know that Ella nos apoyara

-Veronica Chavez

Find full testimonials at :


FUTURO members, Jose Richard Aviles, Bianca Medina, Liz Rodriguez and Sandra Parra share with us their powerful testimonials about how CONTRA-TIEMPO has shaped and formed their lives as dancers, artists and activists.