The film, BLESS ME, ULTIMA, will be presented on the Lutcher Theater stage at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, April 18, 2013. Free general admission tickets are now available at the Lutcher Theater box office and may be obtained in advance or night of show.

Based on the controversial, first award-winning Chicano novel by acclaimed author Rudolfo Anaya, BLESS ME, ULTIMA is a turbulent coming-of-age story about a young boy, Antonio (Luke Ganalon), growing up in New Mexico during World War II.  When a mysterious curandera (healer) named Ultima (Miriam Colon) comes to live with his family, she teaches him about the power of the spiritual world.  As their relationship grows, Antonio begins to question his strict upbringing by his parents (Dolores Heredia & Benito Martinez).  Through a series of mysterious and at times terrifying events, Antonio must grapple with questions about the nature of divinity and his own destiny.

The film BLESS ME, ULTIMA was written and directed by Carl Franklin (“Devil in a Blue Dress”) The executive producer is Christy Walton, and producers are Mark Johnson, Sarah DiLeo and Jesse B’Franklin. The film stars Miriam Colon, Luke Ganalon, Dolores Heredia, Benito Martinez, Castulo Guerra and Joaquin Cosio.

The viewing of BLESS ME, ULTIMA is a Southeast Texas activity presented in affiliation with The Big Read in Orange and Jefferson Counties. The Big Read is an initiative of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) designed to restore reading to the center of American culture. Lamar State College Orange received a grant last fall to host The Big Read for Southeast Texas in order to help promote and carry out community based reading programs and features several activities between LSC-O, Lamar University, the Stark Museum of Art and other partners. Both Jefferson and Orange Counties declared the month of April “The Big Read Month.”

The Stark Museum of Art is joining in on The Big Read with an exhibition entitled “Wild Beauty: the New Mexico Setting,” which drew inspiration from BLESS ME, ULTIMA. Visitors to the exhibition will see works by Taos and Santa Fe artists, such as Ernest Martin Hennings, Joseph Henry Sharp, Ernest Leonard Blumenschein, Nicolai Fechin and Georgia O’Keeffe.  To stress the connection with the novel, quotes from the book are placed in different sections of the exhibition, both in English and in Spanish. The museum will also provide tours in Spanish upon request. The exhibition at the Stark Museum of Art will be on display until June 8.

In addition, Denise Chavez, a well-known Hispanic author, social activist, educator and performer, will speak about Anaya and his novel BLESS ME, ULTIMA at the Lutcher Theater at 6:30 p.m. April 25. Immediately following the Chavez presentation at Lutcher Theater, the public is invited to attend a book signing and reception at the Stark Museum of Art.

For more information, about the BLESS ME, ULTIMA film, contact the Lutcher Theater at 409-886-5535 or at 707 Main, Orange, Texas. For more information about The Big Read activities visit