Borinquen vive en El Barrio

Photo by Michael Palma Mir

Photo by Michael Palma Mir


This is the story of a Puerto Rican family that has lived in El Barrio for the past fifty years. The play opens when Borinquen is visited by a young relative from Puerto Rico, her grand-niece Maite, who comes to study acting at NYU. While staying with Borinquen, Maite learns about the lives and struggles of so many Puerto Ricans in New York. 

Borinquen’s daughter, Minerva, who is married to a Jewish-American, now lives in the suburbs of Connecticut, after choosing to leave El Barrio. Carlos, a long-time family friend, has been in love with Minerva since childhood and resents her marriage to a non-Puerto Rican. Through these two characters we learn about the Young Lords and the identity struggles of so many U.S.-born Puerto Ricans. When suddenly Borinquen faces death, all characters are forced to re-examine their relationship with their homeland.

After Borinquen's death, Laura, Minerva’s daughter, comes to help close up the apartment. In Laura we see a new generation of Puerto Ricans searching for its roots. Minerva is taken by surprise when she learns that Laura wants to move to El Barrio. She wants to find her identity through her grandmother’s past and a neighborhood that represents still today the history of so many Puerto Ricans in this country.


Production History

Full Production, Hostos Repertory Company, New York City, 2007

Full production, Teatro Stage Fest, New York City, 2008

Full Production, City Parks Tour, New York City, 2008

Full Production, Puerto Rican Traveling Theater, 2009

Workshop Production, Mayaguez, PR (UPR), 2013



Excerpt from Borinquen vive en El Barrio