“We’re looking down at our phones so often that we rarely look up. This bus tour is a way of looking up and engaging with your city in a completely new way,” says the Mexican luchador known as El Jaguar.
He will be hosting the El Jaguar Fiesta Bus Tour taking place in Vancouver from Oct. 18–20 as part of the 2019 International Theatresports Institute’s Conference and Festival.
“The importance of improv isn’t just about finding your family or tribe, it’s about having an undeniable connection with people,” says El Jaguar.
El Jaguar has been with TheatreSports for 30 years and credits his teacher Keith Johnstone for inspiring him and giving him the tools to teach others.
“Improv is whatever inspires you, you come with nothing and find ways to spark joy,” he says.
Now, taking on the persona of El Jaguar, he works to find the joy in the world with the El Jaguar Fiesta Bus Tour.
Reconnecting with the city
“You don’t need a stage to do improv. Improv is about working with your environment,” says El Jaguar.
As he explains, the El Jaguar Fiesta Bus Tour is a way of getting people to look up from their phones and seeing the city they live in, in a completely new and different way.
“This isn’t your average, run-of-the-mill bus tour, it’s a fiesta,” he says. “It’s like re-meeting something you already know, but in a different way.”
When an earthquake hit his home of Christchurch, New Zealand, it devastated the community. However, El Jaguar began noticing how the city was rebuilding and it was as if he was being reintroduced to his home.
El Jaguar got the idea to start the El Jaguar Fiesta Bus Tour when he started doing bus tours of Christchurch to get other people reacquainted with their hometown, pointing out all of the new buildings and architecture the city had rebuilt.
As you ride through your own city on a tour, passing by landmarks and places you think you know, El Jaguar will present you with ‘alternative facts,’ few would’ve ever thought of.
“The best part is – because you’re not the one driving the bus – you can just sit back and enjoy the show,” says El Jaguar.
Fighting to make the world better
After retiring from professional wrestling, El Jaguar says he struggled with finding out who he really was.
“I wrestled with my own identity and self worth,” he explains.
El Jaguar eventually found that engaging with the community and bringing joy to others in turn brought joy to his own life.
“I go out there and I communicate joy,” he says.
Being a luchador is about getting ready for a fight and in this case, El Jaguar says he’s getting ready to fight to make the world a better place and to spread positivity.
“I spent a lot of time being sad and you can’t do much with sadness, you can do a lot more with positivity,” says El Jaguar.
As a single father, El Jaguar is always looking for new things to do with his son and these bus tours are his way of connecting with his family.
“I want to break barriers,” says El Jaguar. “Because we’re constantly putting up barriers, like our phones, that keep us from learning about one another, we get used to seeing certain things so we sometimes stop appreciating the beauty of connection.”
According to El Jaguar, this bus tour is a way to reconnect with the world around you, to re-meet people who you already know and see things in a different way. It’s about making that connection again.
“We are here to celebrate, meet new people, share experiences” says El Jaguar, “We’re trying something new where every action is different and we all share a love for the city.”