Culture Clash's break into "legitimate" theatre came on October 5, 1988 with the premiere of their play, The Mission, at the Intersection for the Arts in San Francisco, California. When the fourth member of the troupe, José Antonio Burciaga, left to pursue other interests, they decided to make the move to create a full-length play. The Mission's plot involves "three vatos from the Mission on a mission," who try to get into Hollywood by kidnapping Julio Iglesias. At the time this play was originally written, there was a movement to canonize Father Junípero Serra, so Culture Clash incorporated yet a third "mission"--the treatment and victimization of California's indigenous peoples by the Spanish mission system. Dedicated to singer/songwriter Lalo Guerrero, The Mission was a tremendous success.
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