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December 1-23, 2022

An Original Pregones/PRTT Music Theater Production

The epic saga of the first mass migration of Puerto Ricans to Hawai’i

The rhythms of traditional bomba y plena, urban reggaetón, and música jíbara collide in this song-driven theater production based on the literary account by influential queer author Manuel Ramos Otero.

Pregones/Puerto Rican Traveling Theater’s original musical play will run Off-Broadway and for the first time at Miriam Colón’s historic Puerto Rican Traveling Theater on west 47th street, Manhattan, on December 1-23. Aloha Boricua dramatizes the one-way transoceanic trip to the Hawaiian archipelago made by poor sugarcane workers and families whose lives were upended by the U.S. military invasion of Puerto Rico and the devastation of Category 4 San Ciriaco Hurricane in 1898-99. Premiered in 2009 under the direction of Jorge B. Merced and composer Desmar Guevara, the show lifts the voices and weaves the stories of five characters in search of home and opportunity, and pays tribute to the myths and truths of the Hawaiian people who welcomed them at the end of their journey.

Aloha Boricua is urgently of this moment in both form and content,” says Merced, winner of the 2022 Simón Bolívar Lifetime Achievement Award from The City College of the City University of New York. “The musical is about the plight of displacement, the cold forces that push people away from their place of origin, and the will to hacer de tripas corazón — to buoy from hardship with a big heart. This has been and continues to be the story of so many migrants and immigrants everywhere. Music and stories shore up their collective resolve and express their gratitude for each other and for whoever offers shelter, comfort, and hope.”

Performed in English and Spanish with titles.

Duration: 1 hour and 54 minutes with one 15 minute intermission.

CLICK HERE for full Digital Program

Based on the short story “Vivir del cuento” and the poetry of Manuel Ramos Otero. Book and lyrics by Jorge B. Merced. Music by Desmar Guevara and Jorge B. Merced. Additional music and lyrics by Anthony Carrillo and Rosalba Rolón. Directed by Jorge B. Merced. Costumes by Oriana Sofia. Digital Projections by Eamonn Farrell. Lights by Emmanuel Delgado. Sound design by Milton Ruiz. Illustration by Jeison Rivera. Production Manager, Jessica Moya.

Ensemble Cast/ACTORS, pictured left to right: Joel Acosta, Yasmin Sophia, Gilberto Gabriel, Kimberly Gómez, Tristan Alek Hernández, Luis Herrera, Anna Cristina Malavé, (also pictured, Jorge B. Merced, director); MUSICIANS: Álvaro Benavides, Anthony Carrillo, Raymond Flores, Desmar Guevara, Camilo Molina-Gaetán.

In-person performances at
304 W 47th St, between 8th & 9th Avenues
in Manhattan

Buy your tickets early online. Link below or at top of page.

GENERAL TICKETS: Starting at $25

BEST PRICESBECOME A MEMBER and get deep savings for the entire season! When you buy a one year $45 tax-deductible membership to Pregones/PRTT you obtain 25% discount for up to two (2) tickets per event this season.

New! TICKET BUNDLES: See all 4 shows and save — available now by phone only 718-585-1202. Previews Bundle $92: 1 (one) Orchestra Ticket for each of 4 (four) Mainstage productions on first week of performances; four (4) tickets total. Premium Bundle $140: 1 (one) Premium Orchestra Ticket for each of 4 (four) Mainstage productions on any other week of performances; four (4) tickets total. Please note: Bundles are not tax deductible. Other offers and discounts do not apply.

GROUPS of 10 or more: $20 per ticket! Phone reservations/purchases only. Some date restrictions may apply. 718-585-1202OTHER OFFERS AND DISCOUNTS: Zip Tickets—in person purchase and proof of residence required, Seniors, Students. For more details call us at 718-585-1202

More About The Artists – Click To Open

JORGE B. MERCED is an acclaimed actor, director, dramaturg, songwriter, and arts educator. As Associate Artistic Director of Pregones/PRTT he plays a key role in the development of the company’s acting and music ensemble, creative methodology, and original repertory, and also leads its lifelong arts learning programs. He studied piano and composition at Escuela Libre de Música in Puerto Rico, theatre at City College-CUNY and EITALC/International Theater School in Cuba, dance/choreography at Alvin Ailey School, and forum theater technique with Augusto Boal. Distinctions include the Dewar’s Young Artist Award, BRIO Award of The Bronx Council on the Arts, and multiple recognitions for his groundbreaking LGBTQ-themed Asunción Playwrights Project and juried play competition. He has directed over 20 Off-Broadway Mainstage & workshop productions with Pregones/PRTT, including: Quarter Rican (2019), Evolution of A Sonero (2018), The Bolero Was My Downfall (2017), The Marchers (2015 & 2018), Aloha Boricua (2014 & 2009), Neon Baby (2013), Noche tan linda (2013 – NY ACE Award), Baile Cangrejero (2011), Las Facultades (2010), Brides (2008), Migrants (2008), and Blanco (2006 – NY HOLA & ACE Awards). He serves on The Lucille Lortel Awards Nominating Committee.

ROSALBA ROLÓN, Artistic Director of Pregones/PRTT, is an accomplished actor, director, and dramaturg specializing in the adaptation of literary and non-literary texts for stage performance with live music. Distinctions include United States Artists Fellowship, Ford Foundation Visionaries Fellowship, Doris Duke Artist Award, and Creative Capital Award (with Paul Flores and Yosvany Terry). Rolón’s numerous theater credits include We Have IRÉ with Paul Flores, Betsy! with Roadside Theater, Dancing In My Cockroach Killers with Magdalena Gómez, Harlem Hellfigthers on a Latin Beat based on the Puerto Rican presence in the all-Black 369th Regiment of the US Army, El bolero fue mi ruina adapted from a story by Manuel Ramos Otero, Quíntuples by Luis Rafael Sánchez, and many others. She is a member of The American Thatre Wing’s Tony Awards Nominating Committee.


DESMAR GUEVARA, Resident Composer and Musical Director of Pregones/PRTT, is a recognized champion of new music idioms in Latin jazz, a composer of experimental and non-traditional music for live theater and film, and an in-demand pianist with numerous concert, touring, and recording credits. He has composed, arranged, and music directed dozens of ensemble theater productions of varying scale, from chamber to Off-Broadway. He is founding director of chamber jazz ensemble Taller Sicá, founding member of Afro Puerto Rican ensemble Viento de Agua, and has collaborated with many musical luminaries including Tito Puente, Celia Cruz, Tito Nieves, Xiomara Fortuna, Andy Montañez, Soledad Bravo, and Danny Rivera. Recent premieres include Grados Inefables, which delves into the esoteric symbolism and philosophies of Freemasonry, co-commissioned by arts presenters in New York, Colorado, and California.

More About Pregones PRTT – Click To Open

Pregones/Puerto Rican Traveling Theater (aka Pregones/PRTT) is a multigenerational performing ensemble, multidiscipline arts presenter, and owner/steward of bilingual arts facilities in The Bronx and Manhattan. Our mission is to champion a Puerto Rican/Latinx cultural legacy of universal value through creation and performance of original plays and musicals, exchange and partnership with other artists of merit, and engagement of diverse audiences.

COVID-19 Visitor Safety Info – Click To Open

PLEASE NOTE: We require all audience members to wear a face mask at all times. By purchasing a ticket or asking for entry to our events, you agree to abide by this rule.
Mask must be worn at all times in the building and must cover nose and mouth. Masks should fit snuggly against the sides of the face.

Our Esteemed Funders – Click To Open

This programs i made possible, in part, with public funds from the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency; New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council; and New York State Council on the Arts, with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature. For a full list of our funders, please visit

Directions to the Puerto Rican Traveling Theater – Click To Open

Puerto Rican Traveling Theater
304 W 47th St 
(b/w 8th & 9th Avenues)
New York, NY 1036

Trains # 1, C, E to 50th Street

For more information call us at 718-585-1202


Select Preferred Date

Select dates and seats* >>

NEW! Ticket Bundles >>

* Preview performance tickets at $25. Prices go up for all performances after December 4.

Event Details

  • Location

    The Puerto Rican Traveling Theater
    304 W 47th St, New York, NY 10036

  • Date & Time

    December 1-23, 2022
    Thu-Fri @ 8:00PM
    Sat @ 3:00PM & 8:00PM
    Sun @ 3:00PM

  • Ensemble Cast

    Joel Acosta
    Yasmin Sophia
    Gilberto Gabriel
    Kimberly Gómez
    Tristan Alek Hernández
    Luis Herrera
    Anna Cristina Malavé

    Álvaro Benavides
    Anthony Carrillo
    Raymond Flores
    Desmar Guevara
    Camilo Molina-Gaetán

  • Production Credits

    Book and lyrics by
    Jorge B. Merced

    Music by
    Desmar Guevara & Jorge B. Merced

    Additional Music & Lyrics by
    Anthony Carrillo & Rosalba Rolón

    Directed by
    Jorge B. Merced

    Costumes by
    Oriana Sofia

    Digital Projection Design by
    Eamonn Farrell

    Lights by
    Emmanuel Delgado

    Sound Design
    Milton Ruiz

    Production Manager
    Jessica Moya