Party Play: "Culture Clash (Still) in America"

Beth Fhaner
 | Jan 07, 2019

Although it’s been a decade since the comedy trio Culture Clash (Richard Montoya, Ricardo Salinas and Herbert Siguenza) last appeared at SCR, the acclaimed group has returned with their timely new play, Culture Clash (Still) in America. With their ongoing exploration of the cultural intersections and societal stress points among a diverse array of Americans, Culture Clash (Still) in America grabbed the attention of the First Night audience and never let up, delivering an hour and a half of biting satire, comedic spontaneity and an honest, poignant look at life in multicultural America.

As Culture Clash marks their 35th anniversary in 2019, the prolific group’s latest work kicked off the New Year on the Julianne Argyros Stage and theatregoers showed their appreciation with enthusiastic applause, generous laughter and an immediate standing ovation. Led by Lisa Peterson’s expert direction, the comedic trio presented a memorable evening of hilarious, incisive observation for First Night attendees.

Honorary Producer and First Night attendee Ernesto Vasquez greatly enjoyed seeing the play, along with his daughter Monica Guillena, who stepped in on behalf of her mother, Socorro, who was unable to attend the performance. Vasquez commented, "Culture Clash is a sharp as ever with their wit and humor—and so incredibly relevant to current political and social conversations."

Guests who attended the cast party at the Avenue of the Arts Hotel, which was a co-sponsor of the event, were greeted with a trapezoid backdrop with red, white and blue upward-focused lights. The inviting space also featured a mix of high and low cocktail tables, which were draped with white linens. The white China mums with red-tinted baby’s breath in large blue glass vases, along with some smaller clear vases, also added a finishing touch.

The celebratory soirée featured a menu highlighting “American” food, and partygoers feasted on an array of delectable bites, including passed hors d’oeuvres such as pigs in a blanket served with spicy mustard, in addition to peanut butter and jelly “Cristos” topped with powdered sugar.

Besides the savory appetizers, ​several hot food stations offered an extensive selection of delicious fare such as a meatloaf and mashed potato martini station that offered toppings of chopped parsley, pan gravy, peas and bacon crumbles. A gourmet mac ​n' cheese station—with Chef’s choice of two types of mac n' cheese—was a big hit with the festive crowd, as well as buttermilk fried chicken sliders, which were served on Brioche mini-buns with spicy mayo, cheddar cheese and pickles.

The evening’s signature cocktail was a “Citrus Clash”—a delicious beverage comprised of tequila with grapefruit soda and a splash of lime.

For a sweet finish to the evening, guests indulged in mouthwatering desserts that ​also paid tribute to America such as blueberry cobbler, mini apple pie tartlets, white chocolate pretzel rods with red, white and blue sprinkles, and tasty popcorn served in cones—all scrumptious treats that few could resist!

First Night theatregoers were delighted to have the opportunity to meet director Lisa Peterson and the members of Culture Clash—Richard Montoya, Ricardo Salinas and Herbert Siguenza—during the party. All the while, lively conversation and laughter continued to swirl around Culture Clash (Still) in America, the acclaimed group’s new work that continues to showcase their special brand of irreverent, thought-provoking social satire.

Learn more about Culture Clash (Still) in America, and buy tickets.