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December 1-18, 2022

An Original Pregones/PRTT Music Theater Production

The spectacular migration of Puerto Ricans to Hawai’i in 1900-01

Based on the short story “Vivir del cuento
and poems by Manuel Ramos Otero

The rhythms of traditional bomba y plena and urban reggaetón collide in this song-driven rendition of the historic migration of Puerto Ricans to Hawai’i.

Premiered in 2007 and part of Pregones/PRTT’s “historic trilogy”, Aloha Boricua focuses on an early instance of strategic population displacement under U.S. colonial rule: Following the devastation of Category 4 hurricane San Ciriáco, just one year after military invasion, and lured by the promise of paid employment and new beginnings, young Puerto Rican sugarcane workers and their families embark on a one-way transoceanic trip to Hawaii.

Multiple voices overlap in the musical narrative, including those of Hawaiian Queen Lili’uokalani; Pele, Hawaiian Goddess of Fire and Volcanoes; and a younger generation of streetwise poets and musicians eager to make sense of it all.

Conceived and directed by 2022 CCNY Simón Bolívar Award winner Jorge B. Merced, the play is adapted from the short story “Vivir del cuento” and other writings by influential queer author Manuel Ramos Otero. Admired for tackling gay and feminist themes frontally, Ramos Otero’s work is famously dense with poetry and wit.

Performed in English and Spanish with titles.
Duration: 115 minutes. One Intermission.

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. 718-585-1202

OTHER 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

Pregones/PRTT’s Mainstage is generously funded by Ford Foundation, Howard Gilman Foundation, Shubert Foundation, and Scherman Foundation. Programs also made possible 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 1-18, 2022
    Thu-Fri @ 8:00PM
    Sat @ 3:00PM & 8:00PM
    Sun @ 3:00PM

  • Collaborators

    Conceived and Directed by
    Jorge B. Merced

    Music by
    Desmar Guevara
    & Jorge B. Merced

    Lyrics by
    Jorge B. Merced

    Additional Music & Lyrics by
    Rosalba Rolón

    Lighting Design
    Emmanuel Delgado

    Costume Design
    Oriana Sophia

    Digital Projection Design
    Eamonn Farrell

    Graphic Design
    Jeison Rivera

    Sound Design
    Milton Ruíz

    Production Manager
    Jessica Moya