Amancay, the theater that does not wither in Neuquén

Amancay, the humble young member of the Vurileche tribe that lives on Cerro Tronador. That young Mapuche woman who fell in love with the chief’s son and who, as in other local legends, had a tragic love ending. Amancay is the bright yellow flower that abounds in the mountain range area. And it is also, the name of the seed that gave life to the theater of Neuquén.

Back in 1940, under the enthusiastic direction of Nicasio Arsenio Cavilla, one of the pioneering casts of Neuquén tabla was formed, the group ”Amancay”, which over the years became a symbol of resistance and cultural struggle. They were a few neighbors who were fond of theater work and gathered to “expose the vice” at the Independiente club. Soon their desire grew and they went on stage with their first works, “Monte en Puerta” and “El sosten de la familia”.

Amancay’s career is very extensive, not only because of its presentations but because within it arose great references of the culture of Neuquén, such as Alfredo de Martín, Raúl Truchuelo, Ángel Della Valentina, Amalia Hernández, and the list could go on.

It was a group that always sought to go for moreand that is why it was inscribed in the pages of history. In 1945, with the emergence of the LU5 station, the theatrical cast He was encouraged to venture into radio theater and they put together the cycle “The novel of the week”, a small physical space, many people in front of the microphone and standing and many others in the back of the room in charge of the sound and the creation of the ambient sounds necessary to give life to stories that were faithfully followed by thousands of listeners.

The stages were not abandoned and hundreds of other works were paraded there, some of which received national awards. The successes multiplied since the theatrical pieces before going on stage were broadcast in “The novel of the week.”

In 1954, Amancay achieved a great dream: have its own stage, which was inaugurated at the “Conrado Villegas” and other new works, remakes, premieres and new members would come.

But good things also come to an end. In the 60’swith Neuquén that had ceased to be a National Territory to become a province and a couple of years ago had inaugurated its first constitutional government, many of the Cast members left the group to take up government positions.

For example, Ángel Santagostino came off the stage to be Minister of Economy.
And so, the dream of amateurs was diluted until disappear after 25 years of walking the roads. But to this day Amancay is remembered as that beautiful yellow flower of the mountain range that leaves its scent every season.

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