This piece can be found online here.
Saturday, February 19, 8:00 pm & Sunday February 20, 3:00 pm (matinee), Friday, February 25, 8:00 pm & Saturday, February 26, 8:00 pm: Theater Play Tackles Green Issue: Methyl Bromide/Iodide
Current protests against the use of Methyl Iodide on strawberry fields had their origins in a similar battle versus Methyl Bromide in the 90's. A new theater play "Bitter the Fruit" tells the story of two brave women teachers who campaigned to get M.B. removed from fields adjacent to their classrooms. The Class One toxin menaced the health of students.
The play also relates the struggle of strawberry pickers to become a recognized workforce under the U.F.W. (United Farm Workers) banner. One young Latina emerges as a natural leader, gaining the respect of a local 'Anglo' journalist. Gradually admiration turns to affection between the earthy (also fiery) 'campesina' and the cool-minded ecologist. With touching humor and bold conflicts, "Bitter the Fruit" gives an accurate historic picture of a determined local movement that combined environmental and labor activists. To some degree the 'green' campaign did win safety improvements in the application of Methyl Bromide fumigant, and a large section of strawberry pickers did win a union contract.
Former Community TV host Nicholas Whitehead wrote the drama, based on his inside knowledge as a member of the dynamic campaigns. Drawn from interviews done
Mural: "Strawberry Fields" by Kathleen Croscetti
at the time, his characters of Ag. Commissioner and Big Grower get to say their piece in a realistic manner, defending the practice of synthetic chemical agriculture as the only means to feed an expanding world.
The production of "Bitter the Fruit" is a presentation of West Performing Arts done by Workers Theater.
Part of the proceeds help fund the health needs of farmworker children.
General admission $9.00 upwards ; Students and Low Income $5.00 ( at the door, or reserve: 831.234.2067 )
Broadway Playhouse ( Santa Cruz Art League ), Broadway at Ocean St., Santa Cruz. Blogsite: bitterthefruit.blogspot.com