New Mexican/American musicals ‘Desaparecidas’ and ‘¡Americano!’ coming soon to NYC

A one-night-only concert and a limited-engagement musical are coming this week to NYC stages, created and performed by a talented roster of Latin American musical-theater artists. Both promise to be must-see shows inspired by momentous real-life stories, events, and cultural traditions.

Art by Martha Orendain.

A set list of songs from the new musical-in-development Desaparecidas, conceived by Jaime Lozano, Florencia Cuenca, and Rachel Stevens, will be premiered at Joe’s Pub on Monday, March 28. With music by Lozano, lyrics by Lozano and Cuenca, arrangements and orchestrations by Lozano and Jesús Altamira, and music direction by Jhoely Garay, the concert will feature performances by Cuenca, Sonia de los Santos, Aline Mayagoitia, Majo Rivero, Daphne Rubin-Vega, and more.

An eclectic group of local female organizers gather for a secret rally, but when a young newcomer stumbles upon their midnight vigil on the eve before her quinceañera, she is forced to envision an identity beyond her assumed fate. Told through the lens of Mexican folklore, the show celebrates the individual lives of women in Ciudad Juárez, explores their systematic oppression, and illuminates the challenge of embracing honored cultural customs while fighting for autonomy and an end to gender-based violence and killing in a dangerous world of machismo.

Desaparecidas plays on Monday, March 28, at 7 pm, at Joe’s Pub, inside The Public Theater, 425 Lafayette Street, NYC. For tickets (priced at $20, plus a two-drink or $12 food minimum per person), go online. Everyone must show proof of COVID-19 vaccination and booster, along with a photo ID, to enter the building and must wear a mask inside when not actively eating or drinking.

Following a record-setting run at Arizona’s Phoenix Theater Company, the new musical ¡Americano! comes to NYC for a twelve-week limited Off-Broadway engagement, March 31-June 19, at New World Stages. Featuring an original score by acclaimed singer-songwriter Carrie Rodriguez (Lola, named one of NPR’s top 50 albums of the year), additional lyrics by Barnard and Rosenberg, a book by Michael Barnard, Jonathan Rosenberg, and Fernanda Santos, choreography by Sergio Mejia, and an almost entirely Latino cast, it tells the true story of the life and achievements of American Dreamer and hero Tony Valdovinos, with topical themes about immigration, refugee advocacy, and voting empowerment for minority communities.

As a child growing up in Phoenix, Arizona, Tony, inspired by the events of 9/11, focused on the goal of enlisting in the Marines on his 18th birthday. But when he tries, he discovers he is an undocumented immigrant. With grit, determination, and help from his family and community, Tony finds a new mission that can make history, create good, and inspire change, challenging preconceived notions and reminding us that America’s strength has always been its melting-pot culture of enterprising immigrants.

¡Americano! plays Thursday, March 31-Sunday, June 19, 2022, at New World Stages, 340 West 50th Street, NYC. For tickets (starting at $49), call (212) 239-6200, or go online. Proof of vaccination and booster, a photo ID, and a properly fitting mask are required.


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