El Proyecto La Lagartija” is the umbrella name of a Central American regional network of organized professional actors and actresses. The aim of the organization is to implement the practice of theater, art and drama within the Central American region. This year the Latin based project is being hosted in Orange Walk Town in collaboration with the Belize Association for the Development of Arts (BADA) and the National Institute of History and Culture (NICH).

The organization originally started in Honduras in the year 2004. At that time Belize was not included in the membership list. That changed; however, in the year 2010 thanks to the efforts of Beverly Swayze, Belize's representative for Proyecto La Lagartija.

Screen_shot_2012-04-14_at_12.29.04_PMBeverly Swayze, Belize Representative for Proyecto La Lagartija

“We became a part of this project which started in 2004 but we became a part in 2010, I attended meeting, they have invited to a meeting in 2009 in Nicaragua to see what it is all about and we push for Belize to become a part of it because I saw it was something that would assist Belize being recognized regionally as well as internationally and so at that meeting they decided that they would accept me in 2010 and that is when Belize really became a part of El Proyecto Lagartija Centro America.”

The organization is directed toward the strengthening and developing of acting skills within the theatric community.

Beverly Swayze, Belize's Representative for Proyecto La Lagartija

“The sole purpose is to enhance and to raise the level of theatre and drama and acting in the region and my representation helps to bring Belize in the group as well and through this organization I can take other people to who are interested in drama and in acting to get workshops to bring up the level of their acting and pass it on because whatever training they get in this project we have to divulge in the communities which we live.  It is a way to keep our young people occupied and involved and it a way of educating our public about certain issues and it is a way of entertainment as well as bringing Belize as part of the Central American Region bringing us closer together and so that the other Central American Region can respect Belize as well as Belize can respect them because w know more about each other.”

La Lagartija is reaching out to the community by hosting several professional training workshops with the aim of promoting the world of art.

Beverly Swayze, Belize's Representative for Proyecto La Lagartija

“The Costa Ricans have a travelling theatre that they are taking through Central America and they will be coming here in July and be performing, that’s a group of four actor and actresses and that will take place here in Orange Walk and probably in some of the other Spanish speaking communities, then will also have a international lightening workshop which will take place on June 18th, the 22nd in Belmopan at the Belmopan Hotel where people will taught to make lights for stage from scratch from recycle material and so that should be very interesting , we will learn how to make them and how to operate them and we will learn how to use them in acts and theatre and then in July, we will also be having here in Orange Walk workshops in acting where I would be conducting divulging the information and skills that I learned this January gone in Honduras and so I will be doing my devolutionary  workshop here in Orange Walk so that will be in July.”

The organization is targeting teachers who can pose as mediums through which students can gain the knowledge of theater, drama and art. Everyone is invited to take part in the upcoming workshops. Interested persons can contact Beverly Swayze at telephone number 664-9719 or 822-2270.