@ The Black Box Theatre, 430 N. Main St.

The Complete History of Las Cruces (Abridged)

Written and directed by local playwright, Tom Smith

  • L to R: Steve Conn and Michael Anderson showing how the petroglyphs came to be
  • L to R: Steve Conn and Santino Jimenez in the Oņate telenovela
  • Left: Santino Jimenez describing the Las Cruces Logo
  • Right: Michael Anderson and Santino Jimenez showing how the petroglyphs were formed
  • L to R: Steve Conn and Santino Jimenez telling the saga of Billy the Kid on the Jerry Springer Show
  • L to R: Michael Anderson, Santino Jimenez and Steve Conn in the Opera of the 20th and 21st centuries

Apr 04-Apr 27, 2008

FRI APR 4,11,18 | 8:00 PM
SAT APR 5,12,19 | 8:00 PM
SUN APR 13,20,27* | 2:30 PM
THUR APR 17 | 7:00 PM


No Strings Theatre Company presents the WORLD PREMIERE of "The Complete History of Las Cruces (Abridged)", written and directed by local playwright, Tom Smith at the Black Box Theatre, 430 N Downtown Mall in Las Cruces.

"The Complete History of Las Cruces (Abridged)" is a hilarious, zany and fast-paced comedy detailing the major events of Las Cruces from prehistoric times to modern day in a mere 90 minutes. Utilizing three versatile actors-Michael Anderson, Steve Conn, and Santino Jimenez-and dozens of props and costumes, audiences will be treated to a Honeymooner's-inspired sketch about how fossilized dinosaur footprints came to be, a telenovela detailing the life of explorer Don Juan de Oñate, and a Wagnerian opera retelling of the 20th and 21st centuries. A sneak preview of the show was presented at the Las Cruces Centennial Celebration in November.

Tom Smith, the author and director, also designed costumes, props and sound for the production. He has directed or performed in NSTC's "Glamtastic," "The Complete History of America (Abridged)," "The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged)," "Ballerina," "A Child's Christmas in Wales," "Psycho Beach Party" and "Vampire Lesbians of Sodom"(original and revival). He is a member of the Dramatists Guild. Michael Anderson is a theatre major at New Mexico State University. His recent credits include the Ghost of Christmas Past in ASTC's "A Christmas Carol," Drew in "The Nature of Mutation," and a variety of characters in the NSTC's "The Complete History of America (Abridged)." Stephen Conn was recently seen in ASTC's production of "The Nature of Mutation." In addition to numerous stage credits, Santino Jimenez recently finished working as Assistant Locations Manager on the feature film, "The Burning Plain," shot in Las Cruces.

NMSU Theatre Arts students are scenic and lighting designers for the production. Kyle Melton is a graduating Senior at NMSU with emphasis in scenic design. His recent work includes "Bus Stop" and "Reckless" for NMSU/ASTC. Jessica Kohn is a student at New Mexico State University and will be graduating next May with an emphasis in Lighting Design. Prior to this show she has assistant designed "A Christmas Carol" and "Reckless" at NMSU. The Technical Director is Peter Herman and Ceil Herman is the Producer. Danny Wade and Don McCoy are Light and Sound Board operators.




Enjoy a night of comedic improv
'Complete History of Las Cruces' features a budding cast

- By Joel Courtney, Las Cruces Bulletin

Have you ever wondered why the city is called Las Cruces or why perfectly preserved Paleozoic footprints are in the nearby Robledos? Well, you won't find out any of that during "The Complete History of Las Cruces (Abridged)," currently showing at the Black Box Theatre through Sunday, April 27, but you will have a laugh with what you do find out.

This new piece, written and directed by local playwright Tom Smith, is the third in the "Complete History" series, and follows that tradition of improvisational and skit-style comedy Smith set forth in his previous productions.

The story begins at the Paleozoic trackways, traverses the Mogallon cave drawings and Oñate's conquest of the region before winding into the founding of Las Cruces and New Mexico State University. Ending all of this up is a musical montage made up from the classics of the Broadway stage.

Although I have to commend Smith for his comedic writing, his cast truly stole the show.

Made up of Michael Anderson, Stephen Conn and Santino Jimenez, the cast of "The Complete History of Las Cruces (Abridged)" was running on and off stage, changing outfits and switching characters for 90 minutes with only a slight intermission, and they still managed to hit their cues, remember their lines and be hilarious at the same time.

Each of the cast used their unique talents, be it pure silliness, a sharp wit or physical agility.

Although some of the jokes may go over the heads of people unfamiliar with Las Cruces, I think there's enough there for even the newest of newcomers to enjoy.

Tickets to the show are so popular, No Strings Theatre Company Artisitic Director Ceil Herman has already added an extra weekend to the show's run at the theater. So if you're interested in getting a good seat, make your reservation early.

"The Complete History of Las Cruces (Abridged)" runs through April 27, with performances at 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, April 13, 20 and 27, and at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 17, at the Black Box Theatre, 430 N. Downtown Mall.


No seating plan has been posted.


Our next production is Animal Tales The normal ticketing system will be used but you may only select the number of seats you require and we will assign seats to comply with NM Covid requirements. You may request row 1, 2, 3, or 4 and we will do our best to honor your request. Please see the event pages for details.

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