Texas Day by Day

On this day in Texas history…

Mexican theatrical company opens in San Antonio

May 22nd, 1911

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On this day in 1911, the Carlos Villalongín Dramatic Company opened at the Teatro Aurora in San Antonio. The company was founded in Jalisco, Mexico, in 1849, and was based primarily in Nuevo León, although it toured throughout northern Mexico and the southwestern United States for many years. In May 1911 the company arrived in San Antonio, where Villalongín had contracted to perform at the Teatro Aurora for nine months. The initial residency at the Teatro Aurora met with such success that the company continued to work there for a year and a half. The troupe had expected to return to Coahuila after completing its agreement at the Aurora, but the Mexican Revolution made Carlos Villalongín, his family, and several other actors decide to remain in San Antonio, and the company took a long-term engagement at the new Teatro Zaragoza, which was owned by Sam Lucchese. The success of the Villalongín company produced a demand for high-quality performances in Spanish-language theater not only among Spanish-speaking audiences, but also in Anglo, Italian, and other communities.

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