On May 15, 2011, in the Spain governed by José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, a tsunami of protest took place that forever changed the national panorama. It all started with groups of young people gathered on the Internet to go out on the streets and ask for a “real democracy now”, against the public cuts defended by the main political parties. The mobilization moved to 58 Spanish cities and the hashtag #SpanishRevolution served as a banner on Twitter, both for organizing the protesters and sharing the outrage.
This 2021 has been the 10th anniversary of the 15M and, although part of the phenomenon still has its replica today, the political present is no longer the same. Some of their participants have passed through the institutions and certain of their main demands, such as the fight against evictions or the increase in the Minimum Interprofessional Salary, have been met. Others, however, were left in the inkwell.
For all this arises Spanish Revolution Live Show, a theatrical function that can be seen at the Teatro La Latina in Madrid from January 28, 2022 and that combines spectacle, sketches and comedy with political criticism. “It is a comedy show in which the front is for people to have fun and laugh, but we also think that from irony it is possible to make people think and foster a critical spirit”, explains to this newspaper by video call Jazmín Abuín , one of the actresses who gives life to this event during the approximately 90 minutes that it lasts. Along with her are Moi Camacho and Jose Parnaso, the other two members of the squad. “It’s going to be a bit like Party Night but without being arrested for corruption,” jokes the latter.
“For this alone it is worth coming: to see Ayuso perform a musical. We can read so far,” Camacho offers as an advance. “We have anticipated, because if she is not going to do it with Nacho Cano as a producer. Then either we did it first or with more infrastructure, we will not be able to match them,” Abuín adds ironically.
But they will not only focus on putting their finger on the sore of politics, also on the media and its ability to influence public opinion based on news interests. “We are going to use different television formats taken to parody, as a debate, a late night or a gathering as a justification to address current issues that we want to talk about, “says Abuín.” There are also the announcements of ‘set the alarm because they are going to occupy the house’ or those of the betting houses. That’s why in the Show we are going to have our own publicity, you can imagine where it can go, “says Parnaso.
What remains of the 15M
“The 15M marked our beginning. It was a social and cultural change in Spain and we knew how to take advantage of it together with many people to be able to take it to networks and spread it far beyond where it began, in Madrid”, indicates Javier F. Ferrero, director of Nueva Revolución, from Contrainformacion.es and manager of Spanish Revolution. However, the 15M was only a preview of the shocks that came later: the mining march, the first one surrounds the Congress, the abdication of Juan Carlos I or the emergence of Podemos. But on the tenth anniversary of the day of protests, with the extreme right represented in the Congress of Deputies and a large part of the “mayoralties of change” lost, one wonders what remains of all that.
“The need to continue fighting is still in force, and lately more than ever with the rise of the extreme right. So we have to take advantage of the tools we have, which in our case is comedy,” defends Parnaso. Abuín, for his part, believes that the mere fact that the 15M has exploded already implies “a before and after” despite the fact that it has been diluted later. “To make people think and leave their house seems to me that it is good and that it always adds up, because the other option is to stay as we are,” adds the actress.
The current social and economic panorama does not seem the best either, especially after a crisis derived from the coronavirus pandemic that has aggravated problems already present in society. So why is there currently no replica of that 15M? “I think it goes a bit in the Spanish idiosyncrasy, which seems to have gotten used to disaffection. It’s like the example of the frog: if you put it in boiling water it automatically jumps; but if you put it in warm water and you increase the temperature in the end she cooks herself alive without knowing it, “Camacho observes. “There are many things that contribute to lethargy, but there are also ways to try to break it. And laughter is one of them,” Abuín concludes.