The Book Of Maria Alexandra Lainfiesta

Alexandra WeverSo this is what my loving friend Maria Alexandra who is on my Home Page and in Endings wrote a couple of years ago after graduating with Honours from the Canadian College of Performing Arts in Victoria B.C. and becoming one of eleven from over two hundred applicants who were accepted at Langara College in Vancouver:

So …first I am a true believer that we need more people in this world who are dreamers; people who despite any limitations, live a life of joy by doing what they love ~ by following their bliss. I am one of those people and my passion is theatre.

Unfortunately, right now, after three and a half years of pursuing my dream to become a well rounded performer who can conquer every aspect of theatre, I am in a critical financial situation regarding my tuition for my next term at Studio 58 which is part of Langara College. The problem is that as an International Student I have to pay more than four times the amount of my Canadian class-mates which means that I need to raise some $7,500 by January 5th next year or else my dream suddenly comes to an end and I have to return to Guatemala. That is the next step I have to take. And if that works I then have to find another $17,000 to graduate. I have looked into any financial support from Langara but there is only one $500 bursary available to the 1,100 international students at the college. And because I am not a Canadian Resident I cannot apply for any bursaries or student loans either.

Guatemala is going through a terrible economic and social crisis right now and so I can’t look for any financial help there beyond what my parents and grandfather have so generously provided over the last three years. Guatemala has been named one of the most dangerous countries in the world to live in.

Theatre is my passion and my gift to and from this world. I have found so much support here in Canada and it is my goal to give back to the community. I wish to one day be able to give what people have given me, and support a theatre student from a third world country who also surpasses expectations and goes beyond limits. I could count with my fingers the people from Guatemala who have been able to leave the country to pursue a successful career in the arts.

Can you imagine how much stress that created for her but she never gave up. So people in Victoria who were impressed not only with her performing skills but with who she is as a loving caring human being  also rallied around, the necessary funds were found, and she recently graduated from Studio 58 and was named to the Dean’s Honour’s list. And now she is really able to follow her bliss. So,after playing a number of roles, both in Vancouver and Victoria in which she often had to die ~ happens to female leads all the time ~ think of La Boheme or Miss Saigon ~ she got a part in a play specifically aimed at young children in which the eight brilliantly cast performers all played dogs.

And, as is customary, each of the performers put their bios up in the lobby outside the theatre door. And here is what she wrote:

Alexandra Lainfiesta                                                                                                                 Yellow Dog

Once upon a time, in an era where there was no iPhones and laptops, in a foreign and warm land named Guatemala, a young girl was born. She grew up to discover that her love for theatre was so strong that when she turned 19 she ventured to a big and cold land named Canada, where she found two magical castles that would help her become the actor she wanted to be: The Canadian College of Performing Arts and Studio 58. Through the years, the young girl took part in some theatre tournaments, some with weird names from foreign lands, like: El Jinete (Puente Theatre), Mis Papas (Rice & Beans), others with easier names: Oklahoma, and Kosmic Mambo (Studio 58), and some with medium-hard names like: Lieutenant Nun (Puente/SNAFU). Now, as her next adventure unfolds, she gets to play with human-dogs.

In March 2016, she got me a complimentary ticket to one  of those performances on Granville Island and, when I went to collect it, I discovered that she had told them that it was for  her “BC Grandfather” which I consider an honour. And, as always ~ I did not see her in Mis Papas but all the other ones she listed above, plus a few more ~ it was absolute joy to watch her perform. Just made my day after some discouraging medical news. And when, a month later, we had lunch together, she told me that she successfully auditioned for a part in the musical West Side Story and will play the important role of Anita in the performances that will take place in Stanley Park for two months this summer. So I shall get to watch her on stage once again.

Simply said, she is an amazing talent. But, more importantly, Maria Alexandra is a kind and loving human who radiates positive energy and who has enriched my life since the day we were first put together in that little room at CCPA to assemble bridge cards for a fund raiser, as described on my Home Page.