We got to know Raffas very well, in fact all three Culture Clash members remain friends with him probably “Por Vida!” The funniest memory I have of “Culture Clash in Bordertown” is while rehearsing for several weeks, one day, as we were portraying a real character, we were adding different dialogue and lines, as we often do as playwrights but out of nowhere, we hear Raffas say, “Nope, he would never say anything like that. That’s B.S.” I remember we all turned around including director Sam,
stunned but captivated by this remark. Raffas went on to tell us, that realistically that character wouldn’t sound like that, he went on to correct us on how this person would say something, walk a certain way, react a certain way,etc. In a nutshell, Raffas was doing theater dramaturgy! It was like a scene from Woody Allen’s “Bullets Over Broadway”, where the playwright played by John Cusak, is being schooled by gangster bodyguard played by Chazz Palminteri. Life imitates art and art imitates life. Raffas, like a real theater trooper, sat quietly backstage in wings and never missed a performance!
First photo: Richard Montoya (left), Ricardo Salinas (middle) and Herbert Siguenza (right) in Culture Clash in Bordertown, San Diego REP, 1998.Photo by Ken Jacques
Second photo: Richard Montoya (left), Herbert Siguenza (middle) and Ricardo Salinas (right); photo by Ken Jacques
Third Photo: The infamous motorcylce