Marfa Live Arts’ Beyond the Box Saturday at Crowley Theater

MARFA — This year’s Marfa Live Arts’ Beyond the Box competition winners Césaire José Carroll-Domínguez, Dillon Orr, and Zona Mutante (Tyler Spurgin and Jonathon Lujan) will have their respective works presented at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, November 19, at the Crowley Theater.

“I am elated and deeply honored to have been chosen to present my work at this year’s Beyond the Box,” said Carroll-Domínguez, whose play, Spreckles, will be staged by actors Roberta Colindrez (A LEAGUE OF THEIR OWN, GIRLS, I LOVE DICK), Amanda Bloom, Jerram Rojo, Yoseff Ben-Yehuda, Melvin McSpadden and John T. Kennedy. “I am deeply grateful to Marfa Live Arts and the selection committee, and I am honored to have my work presented with that of other incredible artists involved with the Marfa community.”

Spreckles, the young playwright said, is only the first act of a planned larger play which he hopes to eventually present. The play, Carroll-Domínguez added, was inspired by the world around him, and caused him to “look back at Shakespeare, at Sophocles, at Arthur Miller and John Steinbeck,” and pulled from those influences into “three intimate vignettes.” Carroll-Domínguez is a writer, actor, filmmaker and experimental multimedia artist based in the U.S.-Mexico borderlands. His work has been featured in MCASD, MOPA and SDLFF. He is a two-time IVIE award winner and has performed at Crossed Lines in London and Museo Careo Gil in Mexico City.

Dylan Orr’s short film, Checkers, which was created specifically for Beyond the Box, with the production team of Olivia Pertuso and Robert Aragon, will be screened following Spreckles. Checkers is a lighthearted post-apocalyptic story about one survivor’s earnest desire to make a friend. For Orr, winning one of the three spots validated his dreams of being a filmmaker. “I feel incredible about being chosen as one of the winners of this year’s Beyond the Box competition. The feeling of being recognized, of somebody saying, “Hey you, what you made is good,” is wonderful — and valuable, especially to an artist, and it makes you want to try again,” Orr said.

Checkers, he added, was his attempt to “tell a story that felt wholesome, but to do it in a cool setting,” utilizing the West Texas landscape to accentuate his story which he described as “not a love story, but a friend story.” Orr is a Marfa Shorthorn and Sul Ross film student graduate and a self-taught maker living in Marfa, Texas. “I grew up in the Southwest with a love for making art, and in particular for telling stories through it. I reject the idea of ever saying something is too crazy to try or to do, and always push myself to do things just a little bit out there.

Sometimes that’s as simple as driving all night to hug a friend, and sometimes it means building a real life Batmobile for Halloween or making a short film that makes my small-town horizon feel just a little bigger.” Orr plans on creating more film projects and starting a YouTube channel to use as a platform for his projects.

Zona Mutante, a cumbia/doom metal (or doombia) two-piece band featuring Tyler Spurgin and Jon Lujan, will close out the show with a performance at the theater. “I don’t really win things very often, I’m non-competitive by nature. Now I’m riddled with guilt because maybe someone else deserves this win more than us,” Spurgin said of the group’s selection. The song they were chosen for and will perform, “Danza De Los Cueros Cabelludos Alateos,” is based upon a scene from Cormac McCarthy’s Blood Meridian, Spurgin said, adding that the group will continue playing and writing music.

“We’re looking for more collaborators and to play shows with people from out of town,” he said. “And recording would be nice.” Beyond the Box is sponsored by National Endowment for the Arts, Texas Commission on the Arts, Mitchell Foundation, Crowley Theater, Permian Basin Area Foundation and City of Marfa. The event will be free and open to the public.

For more information on Marfa Live Arts programs, past, present, and future, please visit
www.marfalivearts.org.