Thursday, October 8, 2020 at 5:30 PM

Responses In Voice and Movement

Talking with Pleneras, Bomberas and Justice Visionaries

Two-Part ENCORE BROADCASTS on January 4 & 11, 2021!

Since inception, Plena and Bomba have been vehicles for capturing the voices, angst and resistance of the Puerto Rican people. From slave revolts to labor movements, to student manifestations, and most recently island-wide protests to oust ex-Governor Ricky Rosello, bomba and plena, and by extension Bomberxs and Plenerxs, have always been there – standing for the fight of their people. In this frank conversation, we go deeper, examining the perspectives of four powerful women, who have united their backgrounds and passions as bomberxs and plenerxs with their commitment for inclusion and justice. Co-presented by Pregones/PRTT, NYC’s landmark Puerto Rican theater with a visionary commitment towards agency of our cultural voices, the discussion, offers insight from Puerto Rico’s Adriana Santoni Rodríguez (Plena Combativa, Colectiva Feminista), Gloriann Sacha Antonetty Lebrón (founding editor of Revista Étnica), Oakland’s Denis Solis (LGBTQIA activist, union organizer and bomberx), and the Twin Cities’ Maria Isa Perez-Hedges (Youth activist, community organizer, Hip Hop Emcee and Bombera) to trace how issues of race, gender, equity, politics and music are confronted on the island and in the diaspora.

This conversation will be streaming live on Pregones/PRTT’s Facebook page live and interactive question and answer, moderated by NYC’s Marinieves Alba (educator, curator and thought provoker).


—Facebook Live:

—Cable: 69 Optimum
—Cable: 2135 FIOS

BomPlenazo 2020: Bomba & Plena: En Acción | October 7 – October 11. BomPlenazo is NYC’s biennial festival celebrating the Afro-Puerto Rican expressions of Bomba and Plena. This fall, BomPlenazo celebrates the Bomba and Plena legacies of struggle, resistance, action and resilience. Watch and engage online, from our homes to yours, for a series of workshops, film screenings, panel discussions, and artist performances. Presented by The BomPlenazo Advisory Committee & Hostos Center for the Arts & Culture. See the full BomPlenazo 2020 calendar at Hostos Online Events. #BomPlenazoPalPueblo

More About The Artists – Click To Open

ADRIANA SANTONI RODRÍGUEZ is a feminist activist, musician, social worker, educator, singer, songwriter, and percussionist. She completed her Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work at the University of Puerto Rico Río Piedras Campus, where she is pursuing her Master’s Degree in Administration and Supervision of Social Programs. After 10 years as a percussionist for the party group Marrano Music, she decided to formalize her apprenticeship in playing the tambourines. In addition to studying the plenary in a self-taught way observing the teachers on YouTube, she took workshops with the plenary teachers Tito Matos and Emanuel Santana. In November 2017, she founded the plenary women’s group, Plena Combativa, where she reaffirms that women are protagonists in the plenary genre and denounces the violence of patriarchy, racism, capitalism, and colonialism, promoting the plenary as a tool complaint and proposal. At Plena Combativa, Adriana is a musical director, composer, lead singer, and requintera. In addition to performing at festivals, businesses, plazas, and theaters around Puerto Rico, he has been able to perform with the group at the Caribbean Festival in Santiago de Cuba, Lolita Lebrón’s Centennial at Hostos Community College in the South Bronx, and at the Encuentro of Young Artivists of the Basque Country. On July 24 of this year, together with Plena Combativa, she launched her first production: the first album of pleneras women to be recorded in Puerto Rico.

GLORIANN SACHA ANTONETTY LEBRÓN es una escritora, comunicadora y periodista afropuertorriqueña. Ha publicado el poemario titulado Hebras. Además de tener cuentos publicados en la Antología Maraña de las Tejedoras de Palabras, Palenque: Antología puertorriqueña de temática negrista, antirracista, africanista y afrodescendiente”. También ha publicado en la Revista Academia de EDP University, la Revista Boreales, Revista Letras de la UMET y Afroféminas. Ha sido profesora de comunicaciones en la Universidad Sagrado Corazón, de donde es egresada y también en la Universidad del Turabo. Es la fundadora y editora de la Revista étnica la primera plataforma multi medios en Puerto Rico para visibilizar a la población afrolatina.  étnica es uba plataforma de periodismo de activismo antirracista y afrofeminista. Es parte del Colectivo Las Ancestras, Poesía Afroversiva y de Colectivo Ilé.

MARIA ISA PEREZ-HEDGES is a national award-winning Puerto Rican singer, songwriter, actress, rapper, activist and recording artist born in Minnesota and raised on St. Paul’s West Side barrio where she was a student at El Arco Iris Center for the Arts studying Afro-Boricua performing arts under the artistic direction of Mila Llauger and Evaristo “Tito” Rodriguez. Isa is a recipient of the 2019-2020 McKnight Artist Fellowship for Musicians, CEO of SotaRico Records, directs mentorship for the non-profit organization Twin Cities Mobile Jazz Project, co-host and founder of Latina Theory A Spanglish Podcast and 2019 alumni of the Wilder Foundation Community Equity Program. Maria Isa is an advisor for El Fondo Boricua assisting disaster relief and cultural programming in Puerto Rico by way of Minnesota. Isa has performed alongside and opened for artists such as The Roots, Pedrito Martínez, Sheila E, Wu-Tang Clan, Viento De Agua, Los Pleneros de la 21, Tambores Calientes, Tego Calderon, Abrante, Tito El Bambino, Digable Planets, Rakim and Eric B, Yasin Bey, Bad Bunny, Common, Moby, Bomba Estereo, Kendrick Lamar, Ana Tijoux, La India, Wu Tang Clan and many more. Her latest EP “Amor Universal” is available now on all music streaming platforms.

PLENA COMBATIVA was founded on November 19, 2017, curiously the day of Lolita Lebrón’s birth, and after the social work student, feminist activist, singer, songwriter and percussionist Adriana Santoni Rodríguez summoned other female percussionists to shape her your concept. This arose when her composition “Plena Indignación” went viral, inspired by the fight against the deposit of toxic ashes of the AES company in the town of Peñuelas. That November 19 they were invited to appear at a gala organized by Greenpeace in protest of the cabotage laws and in which they shared several songs, including Plena Indignación. The reception was great and they decided to start their musical project. Since its formation, shortly after Hurricanes Irma and María, Plena Combativa has been active bringing music with a feminist political consciousness to festivals, colloquia, plazas, businesses, theaters, schools and communities around Puerto Rico, especially to protests and demonstrations in defense of a dignified life for all. In addition, they offer full feminist workshops to different ages and communities, where the technique of instruments is taught, the composition of plenas and slogans and discussions are held around social justice and feminist activism. The music of Plena Combativa has sounded outside the archipelago: at the Caribbean Festival dedicated to Puerto Rico in Santiago de Cuba in July 2018; in the commemoration of the Centennial of Lolita Lebrón at the Hostos Community College in New York and at the Meeting of Young Artivists for the ODS in the Basque Country in October 2019. The partners of Plena Combativa: Lourdes A. Torres Santos, Laura L. Cintrón Carrión, Angellie González Jorge, Laura R. Freytes Rodríguez, Margarita Morales Marrero and Adriana Santoni Rodríguez have just released their first album and with this they make history by becoming the first plenary group made up of women to record an album in Puerto Rico. The production is made up of 14 original songs that carry an anti-patriarchal, anti-colonial, anti-capitalist and anti-racist transgressive message. They plan to continue composing and making music that denounces, problematizes, generates conversation and serves as a source of energy to help build the dignified life and the country that we deserve.

MARINIEVES ALBA is a creative innovator whose work fuses the arts, activism, and media, including print, radio, and documentary filmmaking. Marinieves was born to a Puerto Rican mother and Panamanian father in The Bronx, where she cultivated her deep love for community, arts and healing.  She continues to nurture her love for traditional music as member of performance ensembles Alma Moyo and Yaya in El Barrio, where she has dreamed, lived, and loved since 1998.  Her poetry recently appeared in WE GOT ISSUES: A Young Woman’s Guide to a Bold, Courageous, and Empowered Life (Inner Ocean Publishing, 2006).

Our Esteemed Funders – Click To Open

This program is made possible, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council, and the New York State Council on the Arts, with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. Southwest Airlines is the official airline of Pregones/PRTT. For a full list of our funders, visit

Logos of funding agencies.

Event Details

  • Location

    Facebook Live
    BronxNet Ch4
    69 Optimum
    2135 FIOS

  • Date & Time

    OCTOBER 8, 2020
    5:30 PM Eastern

    Encore Broadcasts:
    JANUARY 4, 2021
    JANUARY 11, 2021
    7:30 PM Eastern

  • Featuring

    Marinieves Alba
    Gloriann Sacha Antonetty Lebrón
    Maria Isa Perez-Hedges
    Adriana Santoni Rodríguez
    Denis Solis