By Stephanie Kaye
A group of teens in Columbia Heights is bringing their stories to the stage and attracting a new audience to DC theaters.
The group is called "Paso Nuevo," or "New Path." And although it's run by a couple of adults, the stories are written and performed by local teenagers, like fifteen-year old Rosemary Solorzano.Her story deals with a girl whose family can't afford a "quince" party, a rite of passage celebrated in Latino communities.
"That girl, she gets into prostitution to get it...but I won't do that!I wouldn't get into prostitution to get my quinces," says Solorzano.
Quique Aviles directs Paso Nuevo.
"When I see Salvadorean peasants that barely speak English and have never been to the theater come to see their cousins and their kids," says Aviles.
He likes shining a positive light on the young people in Columbia Heights.
"We tend to think of our young people as these violent beasts when, in reality, they have a tremendous sense of beauty and caring," he says.
The group's latest production, "La Catorce," highlights life on 14th Street Northwest, with performances tonight and Sunday at Gala Hispanic Theater.