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VivaFest! 2012

VivaFest!, the popular San Jose Mariachi and Mexican Heritage Festival, takes center stage once again at The Tech Museum.

For many days in September, the museum will be the premier platform for the rich range of cultural experiences of Mexican-Americans and Mexico during the largest celebration in the USA. The festival is the cornerstone of the Mexican Heritage Corporation's programming, which also features year-round music and dance education in local schools, museums and community centers.

The festival is a family-oriented event of music, film, arts and educational events, drawing more than 50,000 people to the heart of Silicon Valley. An eclectic series of films showcasing the work of independent Latino and Mexican-American filmmakers will launch the week-long ¡VivaFest from Saturday, September 8 - 30. Screenings will take place The Hackworth IMAX® Dome Theater at The Tech Museum. Series highlights include Like Water for Chocolate and a screening and panel discussion of the documentary Tijuana Jews with Hollywood director/producer Isaac Artenstein (A Day Without A Mexican) and festival veteran Michael Ronstadt and Ronstadt Generations. As part of the annual celebration, the museum will also host Mexican music and dance workshops.  

Past Events

Rick Najera with a Special Screening of “Taco Shop”

Saturday, September 8, 2012

7:00 p.m.

The Hackworth IMAX Dome Theater

Film only $12/ $10 for members (or group pricing)
Join filmmaker, Rick Najera in The Hackworth IMAX Dome Theater at The Tech Museum for a sneak preview and discussion of the making of Taco Shop. Rick Najera, original writer for In Living Color and MadTV works as a writer/producer/actor in films such as Nothing Like the Holidays and in television with mentoring new talent for the CBS Diversity Showcase.
Taco Shop, a comedy, centers on a young man nicknamed Smokes played by Tyler Posey of Teen Wolf fame, who quits his taco shop job to open his own shop -- but finds himself in an all-out war when a gourmet taco truck parks across the street. This indie film written by Rick Najera and Oskar Toruno also stars Carlos Alazraqui, Eric Roberts, Felipe Esparza, Laura Harring, Paula Jai Parker and Parvesh Cheena. ’Make Tacos – Not War‘ is the mantra of the movie. 
Start the night dining alfresco with dueling taco trucks.  Trucks will be in front of the museum from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Not included in movie ticket.

Classic Mexican Movie Night, Doña Barbara

Monday September 10, 2012

7:00 p.m.

The Hackworth IMAX Dome Theater

$10/ $8 for members (or group pricing)  
Join us for a screening of the Mexican classic film, Doña Barbara, starring Maria Felix.
The most iconic leading lady of the Golden Age of Mexican cinema, known for her larger-than-life, tough character in films, Maria Felix was nominated for five Ariel Awards, of which she won three for Enamorada, Río Escondido, Doña Diabla and a special Golden Ariel Award for her contribution to cinema. She was more commonly known, particularly in her later years, by the honorific “La Doña”.
Film shown In Spanish, no subtitles

Tijuana Jews

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

7:00 p.m.

The Hackworth IMAX Dome Theater

$10/ $8 for members (or group pricing)
Tijuana Jews is an authentic and living testimony set against conceptions and misconceptions of this near-mythic border city. Tijuana Jews illuminates the experiences of local pioneers who established the first Jewish temple in Tijuana and its subsequent congregations. The first-person narration takes the audience on an intimate journey that builds to a dynamic present that includes the transformation of Tijuana into the busiest border crossing in the world, and the migration of many Tijuana Jewish families to America. Tijuana Jews is a personal exploration of this unique community, which blended Jewish and Mexican cultures and customs in an unlikely place and time.
Film shown in Spanish with English subtitles.

Weight of the Nation

Thursday, September 13, 2012

7:00 p.m.

The Hackworth IMAX Dome Theater

$10/ $8 for members (or group pricing)
Presented by Kaiser Permanente, The Weight of the Nation™ documentary series and public health campaign present a unique opportunity to spotlight the severity of the obesity epidemic, to showcase strategies that work and, most importantly, to catalyze action to end obesity.
Film shown in English

Like Water for Chocolate

Friday, September 14, 2012

7:00 p.m.

The Hackworth IMAX Dome Theater

Film and chocolate tasting $20/$16 for members (or group pricing)      
Join us for a tempting array of chocolates by Casa de Chocolates whose flavors and aromas will strengthen your belief of the Mayans that this is "Food of the Gods". Then settle in to watch the 20th Anniversary of Como Agua Para Chocolate (Like Water for Chocolate) an award-winning film based on the best-selling novel by Laura Esquivel. This internationally popular romantic fable from Mexico centers on a young woman who discovers that her cooking has magical effects. The tale's heroine, Tita, is the youngest of three daughters in a traditional Mexican family. Bound by tradition to remain unmarried while caring for her aging mother, Tita nevertheless falls in love with a handsome young man named Pedro. Pedro returns her affection, but he cannot overcome her family's disapproval, and he instead marries Tita's elder sister. The lovestruck young woman is brutally disappointed, and her sadness has such force that it infects her cooking: all who eat it her feel her heartbreak with the same intensity. This newly discovered power continues to manifest itself after the wedding, as Tita and Pedro, overcome by their denied love, embark on a secret affair.
Film shown in Spanish with English subtitles

The Renaissance of Mata Ortiz

Film Screening and Showing of Mata Ortiz ceramics

Saturday, September 15, 2012

7:00 p.m.

The Hackworth IMAX Dome Theater

$10/$8 for member (or group pricing)
Directed by Scott Petersen, The Renaissance of Mata Ortiz offers a fascinating look at contemporary Mexican art and culture.
A double treat – a screening of this amazing cross-cultural story of how an American adventurer and a brilliant, self-taught Mexican artist transformed a dying desert village into a home for world-class ceramics – and a showing of Mata Ortiz ceramics by Victoria Martino, an expert and a dealer in these fine ceramics.
This documentary winningly tells the tale of Mac Callum’s unlikely odyssey as an arts promoter, and the film also provides a fascinating portrait of Quezada’s equally unlikely rise to prominence. The footage capturing the creation of Quezada’s painstakingly precise designs is wonderful, and Mac Callum and Quezada’s accounts are compelling.
English and Spanish with English subtitles. 


2012: Maya Calendar Revealed 

Film Screening of 2012: The Beginning 

followed by Panel Discussion with Jean Molesky-Poz, Isabel Hawkins, Maya Elder Tata Jose Soc Chivalan, and Shannon Kring Buset 

Sunday September 30, 2012

2:00 p.m. 

New Venture Hall

$20/$16 members 
The Film -- 2012: The Beginning
December 21, 2012.  This date, identified by the Maya more than 1,400 years ago, has in recent years become the source of great curiosity and debate.  Some believe it will bring catastrophic events -- others, an era of enlightenment. But what did the ancient Maya themselves believe?  2012: The Beginning travels the world to examine what the sacred Maya texts really say.
Throughout, the journey is guided by noted archaeologists, scholars, and the living Maya, who take viewers into the field—to the very origins of the Maya Long Count calendar—and into their lives and sacred ceremonies. Together, these people from very different worlds shed light on a date that has long been shrouded in mystery and intrigue.
Panel Discussion
Jean Molesky-Poz: Author and Lecturer
Isabel Hawkins Ph.D.: Astronomer and Educator
Tata Jose Soc Chivalan: Maya Elder
Shannon Kring Buset: Writer, Director, and Producer
Dr. Michael Grofe: Maya Hieroglyphic and Archaeoastronomy Specialist