Brief Chornological History and Special Events

 

  BRIEF CHRONOLOGICAL HISTORY and PRESTIGIOUS EVENTS                       

1982  MFDC is founded by Jose L. Ovalle. It rehearses at The Gads Hill Center, 1919 W. Cullerton Ave. in the Mexican Pilsen community.   

            Starting with 20 dancer it grows to 80 and outgrows the small facility.

1983  Incorporated as a not-for-profit corporation in Illinois by Henry A. Roa, Carmela Baeza and Matilda Martinez.

1984  Moves to larger facility at Malcom X College, 1900 W. Van Buren Street. This creates proximity problems for some dancers and         

          membership drops by 50%. But the economic gain is tremendous as bookings and income increase.

1984  Listed in the Illinois Arts Tour Catalog. This further increases public visibility and leads to more notable presentations.

1985  Performs for President Ronald Reagan’s visit to Chicago Heights, IL

1987  Performs for Vice president Bush at the Pan Am games.

1987  Performs for Governor James Thompson and Mayor Harold Washington.

1987  Performs at The Chicago Theater as an opening for Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gorme. MC was Irv Kupcinet.

1988  TOURS MEXICO and receives rave reviews from the Mexican media. 

1988  Performs for the Tribute to Katherine Dunham. At The New Regal Theater.

1990  Performs for Mayor Richard M. Daley at The Washington Library.

1992  Performs for Chicago Bulls halftime.

1992  MFDC  receives 501(C)(3) status.

1992  MFDC celebrates its Decennial with a dinner/performance at The South Shore Cultural Center, 7059 S. South Shore Dr.

1994  Performs for President Bill Clinton at The World Cup in Soldier Field before 45,000 people including many world leaders.

1994   Jose L. Ovalle is selcted to emcee Amalia Hernandez’s appearance at the Mexican Fine Arts Center Museum     

1994   MFDC has to leave Malcom X College but at the same time a new community center in Pilsen, Instituto Cultural Guadalupano, is 

           planned by The Resurrection Project and MFDC is solicited to be the resident dance company.         

1995   Returns to its birth community of Pilsen in the Instituto Cultural Guadalupano and begins to grow again.

1996   Expands to Brighton Park community, that is now  predominantly Mexican, with residency at Our Lady of Fatima Church, 2751 W. 38th Pl.

1997    Included in the Heartland Arts Fund Catalog . This program provides grants in the 15 state heartland area of Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas,   

            Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Texas and Wisconsin.

1997    Celebrates its Quindecennial with a dinner/performance at The South Shore Cultural Center, 7059 S. South Shore Dr.

1999    Receives a Four Star review from The Green Bay Press Gazette for performances in Green Bay WI. 

           “Dazzles” “Wow” “Most Spectacular” “Bursts of Flame”  read the review.

2000    A fire at the Guadalupano Center causes MFDC to seek alternate space. It was acquired at Notre Dame Church, 1336 W. Flournoy,

           St.. Ann School, 2211 W. 18th Place, St. Pius Church, Ashland and 19th Street and the Harrison Park Field House, 1824 S. Wood Street.  

2001    Chosen to represent Chicago in the 1st Mexican Folkloric Dances International Competition of the Midwest sponsored by The Back of The Yards

            Neighborhood Council. Eleven professional groups from Mexico and the U.S.A. participate; MFDC places fifth. 

2001 FEATURED on IAC "CENTER STAGE ARTS ACROSS ILLINOIS" program by WTTW TV CH-11.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uyZqBhoYPDo  

2001    Chosen to perform, in Harrison Park, for Mexican president Fox’s visit to Chicago. 

2002    Celebrates its Vigintennial with a performance on The Skyline Stage at Navy Pier. 

2003    Granted residency in the new Zacatecano Cultural Center, 4145 S. Kedzie Ave. in Brighton Park. The center is run by the Federacion de Clubes Unidos

            Zacatecanos en Illinois. The center is the newest Mexican community center in the southwest side.

2003    Selected to participate in the opening of the new Concordia Theater in Cicero Illinois.

2003    Selected to participate in the opening of the Joan W. and Irving B. Harris Theater for Music and Dance in Chicago Millennium Park. 

            “Rollicking” and “Colorful” said the Chicago Tribune. “Spirited” said the Chicago Sun-Times.

2003     Performs with Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlán, Mariachi Cobre, Mariachi Los Camperos and Ana Barbara at Disney World for UNIVISION's first and 

             second Mariachi Festival.          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X2slcka9ac4 

2004     Celebrates 22 years with performance at The Concordia Theater; accompanied by three bands and using the “Mojigangas” (giant puppets).

2004     Selected to participate in the official grand opening of  Chicago Millennium Park.

2004     Selected to be part of the "Faces" that appear on the Millennium Park Crown Fountain.  

2004      Performs with Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlán at Disneyworld for UNIVISION second Mariachi Festival.

2005     Celebrates 23 years with performance at The Concordia Theater, accompanied by two bands. Introduces new “Matachines” costumes.

            “Extraordinary Dancers”, “Beautiful” said ABC WLS CH-7 TV broadcasters on May 08.

2005     Featured on WTTW  CH-11 PBS Chicago Tonight program Arts Across Illinois sponsored by Illinois Arts Council Oct. 10.

             “CRITICALLY ACCLAIMED” STATED Bob Sirott     https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iG_Ie1XCjTQ 

2005     INCLUDED IN NEW REGIONAL ARTS ORGANIZATIONS SITE FOR TOURING GRANTS IN THE 50 USA  STATES              

2006     Featured again on WTTW CH-11 in The Illinois Arts Council’s “Arts Across Illinois” series (February 10,14, 19 and 20)

2006     Celebrate 24 years with a Performance at The Harris Theater accompanied by 3 bands.

2006     Participates in Smithsonian Folklife Festival in Washington D.C. as representative for Chicago Mexican music & dance exhibit archived in

            Smithsonian Library for posterity.

2006     JOSE L. OVALLE IS SELECTED BY THE AUDITORIUM THEATRE TO MODERATE THE “FIRESIDE CHAT” WITH SALVADOR LOPEZ, DIRECTOR, OF  

             BALLET FOLKLORICO DE MEXICO DE AMALIA HERNANDEZ.

2007    PERFORMS with PEPE AGUILAR at THE PREMIO LO NUESTRO AWARDS in MIAMI, FL.  https://video.search.yahoo.com/yhs/search;_ylt=A0LEVjMiiGhXoOUALXAPxQt.;_ylu=X3oDMTByMjB0aG5zBGNvbG8DYmYxBHBvcwMxBHZ0aWQDBHNlYwNzYw--?p=Premio+Lo+Nuestro+XIX+Pepe+Aguilar&fr=yhs-att-att_001&hspart=att&hsimp=yhs-att_001#id=11&vid=2f6933aca016dc03e0f0782ae78a89d2&action=view

2007    Celebrate 25 years with a Performance at The Harris Theater; accompanied by two bands.

2007    DANCES at the FESTIVAL OF WORLD CULTURES in DUN LAOGHAIRE, IRELAND (selected over groups from Mexico)

2008    Performs 2nd time with PEPE AGUILAR at THE PREMIO LO NUESTRO AWARDS in MIAMI, FL. http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=Pepe+Aguilar+2008&&view=detail&mid=50D5C1236E32E3363FC950D5C1236E32E3363FC9&rvsmid=50D5C1236E32E3363FC950D5C1236E32E3363FC9&fsscr=0&FORM=VDFSRV     Slide to the 2:15 minute mark

2008    Celebrates 26 years with a performance at the Harris Theater; accompanied by 2 bands.

2008    CANAL ONCE from MEXICO CITY comes to Chicago to film a story on MFDC. Shown worldwide via satalite.

2009    DANCES A SECOND TIME at the FESTIVAL OF WORLD CULTURES in DUN LAOGHAIRE, IRELAND

2009   Performs with JUAN GABRIEL in Las Vegas for Latin GRAMMYS® http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=Juan+Gabriel+Con+Mariachi+Latin+Grammy&&view=detail&mid=67C293B2D6FD2F7452D567C293B2D6FD2F7452D5&FORM=VRDGAR  

2010   Becomes an Arts Partner with the City of Chicago Park District with residencies at Gage Park and Piotrowski Park                                                     http://www.chicagoparkdistrict.com/assets/1/7/Current_APR_list-4-2015.pdf

2013   30 year anniversary sell out performances at the Harris Theater, Chicago and the Olympic Theater, Cicero

2014   Performs for 20th anniversary of Sones de Mexico Ensemble at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion Millennium Park; 15,000 attended.

2015   Annual appearane on WGN TV  CH 9  http://wgntv.com/2014/08/01/midday-fix-the-living-loop-performing-arts-festival/

2015   Featured in WTTW TV documentary "Chicago's South Side Neighborhoods" http://interactive.wttw.com/southside/watch

2016   Featured on WLS TV CH 7 Hispanic Heritage Month http://abc7chicago.com/entertainment/mexican-folkloric-dance-company-lights-up-stage-at-south-suburban-college/1553878/http%3A%2F%2Fabc7chicago.com%2F1553878%2F

2016   With Los Tigres del Norte and Mariachi Flor de Toloache at Ravinia Park in Highland Park, IL. See PDF in Promos & Videos section

2016  At the Auditorium Theatre, Chicago  with Lila Downs and Mariachi Los Camperos de Nati Cano

 

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