Theater: Carmen Rivera’s “La caída de Rafael Trujillo”


Teatro Círculo— an award-winning Off Broadway theater company known for its inventive presentations of Spanish and Latin American classics and contemporary plays—brings back its award winning production “La caída de Rafael Trujillo” [Rafael Trujillo’s Fall] by Carmen Rivera for a limited engagement from October 16 to October 25, 2015, at The Rose Nagelberg Theater at Baruch College (located at 55 Lexington Avenue in Manhattan).  The play, based on “the events that led to the implosion of a ruthless dictatorship” in the Dominican Republic, will be performed in Spanish with English supertitles.  

Carmen Rivera has dedicated nearly a decade of research to develop a riveting portrayal of a central figure in Dominican and Caribbean history and the events that led to his downfall.  Carmen is widely known for “La Gringa,” the longest-running off-Broadway Latino play and her other works about iconic figures such as Celia Cruz, La Lupe and Julia de Burgos.

Regarded as one of the most prolific U.S. Latina playwrights, Rivera is the creative force behind box office blockbuster’s such as “CELIA: The Life and Music of Celia Cruz” (co-written with Cándido Tirado) and “La Lupe: My Life, My Destiny.” Her play, “La Gringa,” winner of the 1996 OBIE Award, is the longest running Latino show in Off Broadway history. Rivera’s work on “La caída de Rafael Trujillo” spans over 5 dedicated years of intensive scholarship, primary research, first-person interviews, as well as source material from CUNY’s acclaimed Institute for Dominican Studies.

In “La caída de Rafael Trujillo,” Rivera, an NYU alumnus whose graduate studies focused on Latin American dictatorships, sets up a series of events–internal uprisings, betrayal, international pressures and political intrigue, as well as the personal failures that led to the downfall of Rafael Leonidas Trujillo Molina. The controversial ruler of the Dominican Republic governed his country with an iron fist and massive blood shed for more than 30 years. Delving into the last phase of his life, the play, based on historical facts and punctuated with Rivera’s inimitable creative narrative, tells a moving story of a man whose desire for absolute power poisoned his humanity and terrorized a nation.

Directed by award-winning director Cándido Tirado, the play features outstanding performances by Iván Camilo (as Johnny Abbes), Johary Ramos (as ensemble/various roles), Adriana Sananes (as Doña María, wife of Gen. Trujillo), Jerry Soto (as Don Paco Escribano), Fermín Suárez (as Joaquin Balaguer), Ed Trucco (as Diplomat), Bersaida Vega (as the lover of Gen. Trujillo) and in the lead role of Trujillo, José Cheo Oliveras. Set design by Jorge Dieppa and lighting design by María Cristina Fusté. Harry Nadal designed the historical costumes and Rubén Darío Cruz is the multimedia designer. For this production, noted Dominican scholar and historian José Novas has been the dramaturgical and cultural consultant and Bersaida Vega translated the play into Spanish.

Tickets: $35 General Admission; $25 Seniors & Groups of 15+ and $20 Students.

For show times and more information, visit: or call OvationTix at 866 811 4111.

To learn more about Carmen Rivera, visit:

If you’d like to interview Carmen Rivera or members of the cast please call Neyda Martínez at 917 656 7846.

For more on Teatro Círculo, see

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