AGM Report

Event - El Blanco -Tales of the Mariachi at Auto & General Theatre on the Square

Start Date: 2017-03-21 · End Date: 2017-04-08 · Venue: Auto & General Theatre on the Square, Nelson Mandela Square

El Blanco:Tales of the Mariachi from Tuesday, 21 March to Saturday, 8 April 2017 at The Auto & General Theatre on the Square, Nelson Mandela Square.


El Blanco, played by acclaimed actor and performer James Cairns weaves together spellbinding stories and songs based on everything from Mexican creation myths and Ancient Egyptians to George Clooney. A smart, sassy and very funny one-man show.

It’s hard to beat the story well told. Stories in themselves are an act of creation, connecting the past with the present. Creation itself is a story. Without stories, we would have nothing but darkness and silence.

This is what James Cairns’s character El Blanco believes. While he may unashamedly spin a pack of lies, in this instance, he comes close to the truth.

El Blanco’s struggle, mostly with himself, to earn the title of Mariachi is masterfully presented through music and storytelling.  "Stories are songs for people who cannot sing,” is one of El Blanco’s gems "and songs are stories for those who can.”

El Blanco must overcome his belief that he can do neither. The tale leads us through a chain of false epiphanies which only lead him back into self-doubt.  At the outset, El Blanco promises that "there will be song, there will be stories and there will be many lies”.  As we discover, lies often reveal truths that would otherwise remain unspoken.

From the pen of Gwydion Beynon and starring James Cairns, EL BLANCO: TALES OF MARIACHI exhibits the prodigious talents of these two artists. Get a ticket if you can.

As a result of a drunken promise, Cairns and Beynon joined forces to make El Blanco: Tales of the Mariachi. Cairns has long wowed South African audiences with his solo performances and others (Dirt, The Sitting Man, The Snow Goose) and Beynon has penned a litany of recent hits (The Epicene Butcher, Amateur Hour). They suspected that they might be a good combination and they were absolutely right. After winning a Standard Bank Gold Ovation Award at the National Arts Festival, EL BLANCO was invited on full bursary to the Brighton Fringe Festival. 

"A dazzling performance from a very skilled entertainer.” —

Show times: Tuesdays – Saturday at 8.15 and also at 6pm on Saturdays.