“HA Festival – The ART of Comedy” Returns to San Antonio September 17 – 19, 2021
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CONTACT: Stacey Norton, Department of Arts & Culture
210-207-6960, stacey.norton@sanantonio.gov

SAN ANTONIO (September 7, 2021) – For the second year, the City of San Antonio's Department of Arts & Culture and its Film Commission is welcoming back "HA Festival – The ART of Comedy." Held September 17 – 19, 2021, the award-winning festival will include 20+ shows by 40+ Latinx comedians at The Lila Cockrell Theatre, The Will Naylor Smith River Walk Plaza at the Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, Jokesters 22, and The Anacacho at the St. Anthony Hotel.

The HA Festival, produced by Warner Media and New Cadence Productions, features performances by some of the funniest Latino comics from across the country as well as the live taping of a star-studded comedy special which will premiere on HBO Max. Danny Trejo, Carlos Santos, Jessica Keenan, Steve Trevino, Lisa Alvarado, Paul Rodriguez, and Emilio Rivera just a few of the featured celebrities hosting and participating at this year's festival.

"San Antonio is excited to once again host the HA Festival," said City of San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg. "Not only does the festival bring high-quality entertainment and a showcase of San Antonio on film, but it also adds to our citywide celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month. Hispanic heritage and culture are the heartbeat of San Antonio, and we are a city that recognizes the importance of representation and inclusion of Latinos in all places and spaces, especially the entertainment industry. To be the site of a festival that gives Latinos a voice and platform is a great point of pride."

The festival celebrates all forms of new mainstream comedy, including stand-up, sketch, and film, while focusing on providing Latino performers the spotlight and voice to normalize their inclusion and develop a robust pipeline of new mainstream talent.

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"The mandate of our company is to empower and showcase the Latino comedic creative community," said Jeff Valdez and Sol Trujillo, the executive producers of the HA Festival and principals of New Cadence Productions. "Hollywood has 2% Latino inclusion. We are proud to say we have a 92% Latino rate of inclusion."

Many performances require ticket purchases, but the HA Festival will also feature free and discounted shows to the public to make comedy and entertainment accessible to all. Events include:

Friday, September 17
  • 6 p.m. – "Comedy Comadres 2020" Sneak Peek at The Will Naylor Smith River Walk Plaza at the Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, a live panel and premiere screening of select clips from their upcoming HBO Max special.
  • 7 p.m. – "Fresh Faces" 2021 at The Anacacho Room at The St. Anthony Hotel with the newest and freshest voices in comedy from around the country.
  • 8 p.m. & 10 p.m. – "Latino Comedy Showcase" at Jokesters 22.
  • Midnight – "After Midnight" open mic held at The Anacacho at The St. Anthony Hotel.

Saturday, September 18
  • 4 p.m. – "The Garcias" Premiere and Cast Panel at The Will Naylor Smith River Walk Plaza at the Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, with members of the original cast of "The Brothers Garcia" who are back as "The Garcias" in the reboot for HBO Max.
  • 6 p.m. – "Equal Footing Film Festival" at The Will Naylor Smith River Walk Plaza at the Tobin Center for the Performing Arts. The Equal Footing Film Festival is one of the first ever all-female diverse film festivals and will celebrate emerging female talent in the comedy genre.
  • 7 p.m. – "Comedy Comadres 2021," at The Anacacho at The St. Anthony Hotel.
  • 7 p.m. – "Double Billing Show" On Their Way: Fresh Faces from 2020 and Fresh Faces 2021 at the Lila Cockrell Theatre.
  • 8 p.m. & 10 p.m. – "Latino Comedy Showcase" at Jokesters 22.
  • 9 p.m. – "The Veteranos of Latino Comedy" Headliner Show at The Anacacho at the St. Anthony Hotel.
  • Midnight – "After Midnight" open mic held at The Anacacho at The St. Anthony Hotel.

Saturday, September 19
  • 3 p.m. – Equal Footing Film Festival awards ceremony at The Will Naylor Smith River Walk Plaza at the Tobin Center for the Performing Arts.
  • 5 p.m. – "The Best of the Fest 1," the first of two HBO Max tapings at the Lila Cockrell Theatre featuring comedic talents of Chingo Bling, Jessica Keenan, Steve Trevino, Carlos Santos, Lisa Alvarado and new finds Dave Jay and Renee Santos. The Best of the Fest will include guest hosts Paul Rodriguez, Emilio Rivera ("Mayans MC" and "Sons of Anarchy" star), a surprise appearance by an alum of the famed sketch troupe The Second City, members of the original cast of "The Brothers Garcia," and Paulina Chávez star of "The Expanding Universe of Ashley Garcia."
  • 6 p.m. & 9 p.m. – "Latino Comedy Showcase" at Jokesters 22.
  • 8 p.m. – "The Best of the Fest 2," the second of two HBO Max tapings at the Lila Cockrell Theatre.

Last year's HA Comedy Festival was award-winning and critically acclaimed. The 2020 Festival, held in February 2020, featured 22 live comedy shows and a universally funny lineup of Latinx talent including Gina Brillon, Mark Viera, and host Anjelah Johnson. The festival concluded with the taping of the critically acclaimed stand-up special, "HA: The Art of Comedy," which is currently available to stream on HBO Max.

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For the full schedule and tickets to the 2021 festival, visit hacomedyfest.com.

Please note: photos/graphics for HA Festival can be found HERE.

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