Salome Martinez Lutz’s life has been affected by the writing of Rudolfo Anaya.
When she was a night school teacher at Albuquerque High School, Martinez Lutz would often have Anaya as a guest to speak to her class.
“Rudolfo has always been extremely nice to me,” she says. “He would come talk to my classes about his books.”
Although his book “Bless Me, Ultima” is a standard, it is the 1984 story “The Legend of La Llorona: A Short Novel” that has resonated most with Martinez Lutz.
This is the reason she jumped at the chance to produce “The Season of La Llorona,” again.
In the book and play, Anaya offers a different version of La Llorona, or the Weeping Woman.
He delves into the life of La Malinche, who was considered a traitor to her people. Malinche, a woman from the Mexican Gulf Coast, helped Hernán Cortés bring down the Aztec empire. She also bore the first mestizo children with Cortés.
“When I first read ‘La Llorona,’ it’s quintessential,” she says. “Rudolfo uses Malinche, who is a real person. He writes about her evolution. He took the story and made it a one-act play. I wish he would have made it longer, but it’s complete.”
Martinez Lutz recently put on the show at Albuquerque High with students there.
She is staging it at the National Hispanic Cultural Center beginning on Thursday, Nov. 3. It will run through Nov. 13.
“The students are all in charge of every aspect of the production,” she says. “We’ve been working on this since August.”
There are 11 roles in the production, and she double-cast only the role of Cortés.
“For me, when I first read it, it was 25 years ago,” she says. “It brought me into the culture in a different way. This is historical, and Malinche evolves into La Llorona. This woman was really alive and breathing. This is what piqued my interest into his books.”