High Flying and Exótico: AHA Festival of Progressive Arts Announces Lineup

Santafe.com | SantaFe.com - August 27, 2014

Festival brings together lucha libre wrestling in drag, aerial performance and more than 60 visual artists, performers and participants

 Cassandro El Exótico Photo Courtesy: AHA Festival

The After Hours Alliance brings the fourth annual AHA Festival of Progressive Arts – a celebration of music, performance and visual art – to the Santa Fe Railyard for a weekend of unique entertainment, Sept. 13 and 14.

El Museo Cultural will host an evening of performances as well as a late-night dance party, Saturday, Sept. 13. Lucha Libre Exótica opens the evening, featuring wrestling by Cassandro El Exótico, the famous Mexican lucha libre who dresses and fights in drag. He will be joined in the ring by the likes of five other fighters, who go by the pseudonyms Estrellita, Diva Salvaje, Niebla Roja, Magnus and Magno. An electronic dance party with sets by local favorite DJ Dirt Girl, Houston artist FLCON FCKER, and two aerial performers takes place afterward.

Sunday afternoon from 1 to 9 p.m., the AHA Festival takes over the Railyard, with a collection of free live music, visual art and pop-up performances. Various musical acts are scheduled to perform during the festival including Denver's Accordian Crimes, and popular Santa Fe bands GRYGRDNS, CassoVita, and bluesy newfolk band Aunt Kackle and the Coleslaw King. There are just under 20 different musicians in the festival's lineup.

Among art on display, installations both interactive and fixed will offer a chance for festival atendees to engage with the work of innovative and compelling artists, many from Santa Fe or neighboring regions. Christian Ristow will install "The Fledgling," a giant mechanical bird whose 43-foot wings are pedal-powered by festival goers. SITE Santa Fe scholar Shelbie Loomis will invite festival goers to engage in live portraiture, as both artist and subject. And Squirrel Mart will create SqArt-O-Mat Mega, a giant vending machine that dispenses art and "deep thoughts."

Included in the festival is a lineup of 10 roaming pop-up performances by various improvisational dancers and comedic actors. Don't miss the Art and Fashion Squad's satirical fashion police, who will roam the festival handing out tickets and awards. Julia Goldberg, host of the "Julia Goldberg Show" on KVSF 101.5, will spend the day interviewing anyone with a story to tell, ideas to share, events to promote or just an idle curiosity to spend a little time answering questions and engaging in dialogue. The interviews will be recorded and available for posterity on Santafe.com.

For more information and a full list of the musicians, artists and performers visit the AHA festival event page.