The Dog’s Will Opens – April 23rd

Dear Friends and Family,

In March I had the great pleasure of directing a staged reading of Stand and Deliver at Pasadena City College (PCC) presented in partnership with the Pasadena Playhouse.   It was a great evening of theatre performed by a talented cast comprised of PCC students and professional actors.  I’d like to thank President Miller, Dr. Jimenez y West and Dr. Olivo at PCC and Sheldon, Seema and Victor for offering me the opportunity to launch your initiative Mi Historia/Mi Manera with Stand and Deliver, a play close to my heart.

My next project, that I hope you can attend, is the classic Brazilian comedy The Dog’s Will Ariano Suassuna. I’m very excited about this play that throws open a wide door to a Latino culture that we know little about and reinforces the fact that to be Latino/Hispanic is not a monolithic moniker. The play is a very broad, bawdy and raucous comedy that cloaks a sharp critique of class and racial hierarchies in Brazil. These prejudices are revealed in the final act when the characters, all killed by the bandit Severina of Aracaju (See attached costume concept), are judged by Jesus and Mary. 

My Director’s Notes, that I’ve attached, explain more in-depth my rationale for selecting this play.

I hope you can attend!



Alma Martinez, MFA, PhD


Member, Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences

Member, Academy of Television Arts and Sciences


In the round! 


The Dog’s Will by Ariano Suassuna

A satire on Human Frailties in the Form of a Miracle Play

Based on Ballads and Folk Tales of Northeastern Brazil.


The University of La Verne Theatre is proud to present the highly-acclaimed classic Brazilian comedy The Dog’s Will for seven performances, opening April 23rd. Written by renowned playwright Ariano Suassuna, and called Auto da Compadecida in Portuguese. The play is a broad comedy in the style of commedia dell’arte and a vigrousus and biting Marxist satire of the translator, the late Dillwyn F. Ratcliff has preserved with extraordinary skill the vigorous humor and biting satire of this remarkable Brazilian play.


The play features the lives of the audacious men of the backlands of Northern Brazil, who live by cattle raising and farming. The chief character is John Cricket (Alvaro Renteria), a petty thief, a crook, and especially a very fast talker. John Cricket and his friend Chico (Aaron Avalos) contrive a plan to acquire some money. After some twists and turns the play culminates in murder and a mass trial. Being the fast talker that he is, Cricket takes upon himself the task of defending the group of rogues before the amiable deity and in so doing achieves his own moral salvation.


Direction is by renowned artist and University of La Verne faculty member Alma Martinez, who brings her vast experience and love for theatre to this production. Martinez got her Ph.D. in Drama from Stanford University and has over 100 credits including Broadway, off Broadway, regional theatre and Mexican and European stages.


This is an opportunity to see a great play at an affordable price. The engaging performance shows 

April 23rd to 25th at 7:30 PM, April 30th at 7:30 PM, May 1st and 2nd at 7:30 PM and May 3rd at 2:00 PM. 

Tickets are $10 for general admission, $8 for seniors and faculty and $5 for students. 

Reservations can be made at (909) 448-4386 or at

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