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Community Arts Workshop

Artist Residency Pilot Program


Cuentos del Pueblo

(Stories of the Town)

Part of the 2018 Pilot Artist in Residency Program funded by the Santa Barbara Foundation, Cuentos Del Pueblo creates an "artistic town hall" for Santa Barbara.

Cuentos del Pueblo is community-based storytelling theater project led by local director Joseph Velasco, with mural artist Carlos Cuellar and musician Sio Tepper. Cuentos del Pueblo creates a safe space for members of the community to come together and develop their own stories through a series of acting, storytelling, visual art, and music workshops. The workshops culminate in public performances based on the participants’ lives and experiences.


E-mail or call 805-324-7443.

About the Teaching Artists:

Joseph Velasco is a graduate of UC Santa Barbara and began his career with the renowned Chicano theatre company El Teatro Campesino as a resident director. A co-founder of BOXTALES Theatre Company, Joseph has worked in New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco as well as with various local theatre groups including the Lobero Theater, Ensemble Theatre Company, and as the former artistic director for City at Peace Santa Barbara, as well as teaching English at Santa Barbara High School for many years.

Carlos Cuellar has been a artist and photographer in Santa Barbara and surrounding communities for decades. He has been commissioned by the City of Santa Barbara, a variety of foundations, and by private individuals and businesses to create murals, art pieces and photography, including for many years as the Artist in Residency for Summer Solstice and Dia De Los Muertos in Carpinteria. His work can be seen all over Santa Barbara County. He received the Santa Barbara Beautiful award for his murals in 2013. Carlos Cuellar is one of the founders of Arts Alive, an agency connecting at-risk youth with artists to create murals in Santa Barbara County.

Sio Tepper was born and raised in Santa Barbara, and graduated from UCSB in 2014 with a degree in Ethnomusicology. She is the co-founder and musical director of TOTEM, a youth arts project that aims to build community and enrich local culture through a holistic educational approach to the arts. She teaches piano privately to students of various ages and performs locally. Sio has served as vocal director, co-music director, and band member in many Santa Barbara High School productions.

Above photos: Photo credit Barbara Parmet.

Funding for the arts residency program is generously provided by the Santa Barbara Foundation

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