unnamed (12)UrbanTheater Company (UTC) is kicks off Season 9 next week with the Midwest Premiere of Puerto Rican playwright, Carmen Rivera’s, Julia De Burgos: Child of Water,directed by Juan Castañeda. Last February, UTC was honored to participate in a unified event spanning four major cities, in a choral reading of Julia De Burgos: Child of Water to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the birth and memory of the iconic Latin American lyric poet. Most recently, UTC forged an incredible partnership with the National Museum of Puerto Rican Arts and Culture (NMPRAC), formerly known as Institute of Puerto Rican Arts & Culture (IPRAC), in Humboldt Park, and is bringing the play to life with a full production inside the museum’s performance space. The NMPRAC has come on board as the main sponsor of Julia De Burgos: Child of Water. UTC and the Puerto Rican Cultural Center (PRCC) have also nurtured an important ongoing partnership and for this production they have come on board as a co-sponsor. UTC celebrates the opportunity to produce one of Carmen’s plays, especially one about Julia De Burgos, the premier poet of Puerto Rico, a journalist, and independentista as well as internationalist, and one of the most prominent national Latina poets of our history.

“I am very excited that UrbanTheater Company is bringing Julia de Burgos: Child of Water to Humboldt Park. UrbanTheater’s energy, courage and their commitment to the overlooked and neglected voices of our times, provides a dynamic forum for these voices to be heard and acknowledged. I am very proud to be working with UrbanTheater Company in bringing the voice of Julia De Burgos to a new generation of people. She was and remains a Poet ahead of her time, so much so that we haven’t even caught up to her yet.” – Carmen Rivera


JULIA DE BURGOS is one of Puerto Rico’s most illustrious poets whose work has earned a place among the best Latin American and Caribbean literature of the 20th century. In JULIA DE BURGOS: CHILD OF WATER, Carmen Rivera takes us on a journey through de Burgos’ life capturing her passions and inner turmoil to come to terms with herself and her times. De Burgos died tragically in New York City in 1953 when she was just 39 years old. De Burgos challenged the major historical problems of her times: colonialism, racism, and sexism. She was a feminist and activist with the Puerto Rican Nationalist Party at a time when it was dangerous to be either.


Carmen Rivera (Playwright) holds an MA in Playwriting and Latin American Theatre from New York University. Her OBIE-Award winning play La Gringa, just celebrated its’ 18th year anniversary in repertory at Repertorio Español. It is now the longest running Spanish-language play in Off-Broadway history. Carmen co-wrote, with Cándido Tirado, Celia: The Life and Music of Celia Cruz, (HOLA Award 2008, Outstanding Achievement in Playwriting), which played Off-Broadway at New World Stages and toured Florida, Chicago, Tenerife, Canary Islands and the Centro de Bellas Artes (Center for the Fine Arts) in Puerto Rico. Other Off-Broadway productions include: La Lupe: My Life, My Destiny (2002 ACE Award – Best Production); Julia de Burgos: Child of Water; To Catch The Lightning (1997 Nomination ACE Award – Best Production); The Next Stop (INTAR / Repertorio Español); Under The Mango Tree (INTAR).

Other works include: The Magic of the Salsa Kingdom, with director/choreographer, Maria Torres;Riding The Bear; The Loves of our Lives; Trujillo: America’s Dictator; The Next Cycle; Betty’s Garage; Ghosts in Brooklyn; ameRICAN; Delia’s Race; Plastic Flowers; The Power of Words; andCaravan of Death which have appeared at Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM); La Mama E.T.C; The Women’s Project and Productions; SOHO Rep; New Georges; New Perspectives Theatre; Martice Enterprises; Nuyorican Poet’s Café; Theatre for a New City; National Public Radio (NPR); City Lights Youth Theatre and in theatre festivals in New York, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, England, Puerto Rico, and Russia. She has also participated at the Lark Playwrights Center – Mexico/ US Exchange program, as a translator.

Her play, The Downfall of Rafael Trujillo, also opens this Fall 2014, at Teatro Circulo in New York City. For more information on Carmen, check out www.carmenrivera-writer.com.

Juan Castañeda (Director) is the proud literary manager and an ensemble member of UTC. A graduate of the Theatre School at DePaul University, Juan joined the UTC family in 2010. Recent UTC credits include First Class and Devil Land. In the spring of 2013 Juan was able to further develop his role as literary manager by curating UTC’s first annual R.A.W (Real. Aggressive. Writing.) staged reading series. Other credits as a director, assistant director, stage manager and actor include companies such as Steep Theatre, Teatro Vista, Halcyon Theatre, The People’s Theatre Company of Chicago, Chicago Dramatists, EX-Pats Theatre, The Mammals Theatre, Hobo Junction Productions, Chicago Fusion Theatre, Splitpillow Productions, Fine Print Theatre Company, Clockwise Theatre, La Molecula Artistica and Colectivo el Pozo.

Julia De Burgos: Child of Water cast includes UrbanTheater Company Ivan Vega, Guadalís Del Carmen, Tamika Lechee’ Morales, Christian Castro, Nydia Castillo, J.J. Romero, and Noe Jara.The creative team includes set design by UTC company member Amy Couey, costume design by Serena Sandoval, lighting design by UTC company member Ivy Reid, sound design by UTC company member Tony Bruno, and props by Letitia Guillard. Additional credits include: Liza Ann Acosta (dramaturgy), Samantha Dzirko (production manager), Caitlin Body (stage manager), Tricia Rodriguez (Assistant Director).


Julia De Burgos: Child of Water runs November 4, 2014 to December 14, 2014, with performances Thursday-Saturday at 8pm and Sunday at 6pm. Thanksgiving week, there will be no performances on November 27 and 28. Tuesday, November 4 through Thursday, November 6 will be $10 preview performances at 8pm.


November 4, 2014: Preview performance at 8pm

November 5, 2014: Preview performance at 8pm

November 6, 2014: Preview performance at 8pm

November 7, 2014: Opening and Press Night performance at 8pm

November 8, 2014: Performance at 8pm

November 9, 2014: Performance at 6pm

November 13, 2014: Performance at 8pm – Teatro Thursdays

November 14, 2014: Performance at 8pm

November 15, 2014: Performance at 8pm

November 16, 2014: Performance at 6pm

November 20, 2014: Performances at 8pm – Teatro Thursdays

November 21, 2014: Performances at 8pm

November 22, 2014 Performances at 8pm

November 23, 2014: Performances at 6pm

November 27, 2014: No Performance

November 28, 2014: No Performance

November 29, 2014: Performance at 8pm

November 30, 2014: Performance at 6pm

December 4, 2014: Performance at 8pm – Teatro Thursdays

December 5, 2014: Performances at 8pm

December 6, 2014: Performances at 8pm

December 7, 2014: Performances at 6pm

December 11, 2014: Performance at 8pm – Teatro Thursdays

December 12, 2014: Performance at 8pm

December 13, 2014: Performances at 1pm

December 14, 2014: Performances at 6pm


Tickets to Julia De Burgos: Child of Water are $10-$30 and can be purchased online at UrbanTheaterChicago.org, by phone at 312-239-8783, via email at reservations@urbantheaterchicago.org, or in person at the Box Office (the day of, an hour before performance), located at The National Museum of Puerto Rican Arts & Culture at 3015 West Division Street, Chicago, Illinois 60622.

Teatro Thursdays: $30 Puerto Rican Dinner + Show Package. UTC and the Division Street Business Development Association (DSBDA) present Teatro Thursdays. Every Thursday startingNov. 13, for only $10 extra, enjoy three dinner options plus refreshments at Ay! Mami restaurant in Humboldt Park located at 2723 W. Division St., IL 60622. BYOB. More information at UrbanTheaterChicago.org


UrbanTheater Company (UTC) was founded in 2005 by a Latino ensemble deeply rooted in their community and culture. UTC is committed to the creation and exploration of urban-inspired works that convey, illuminate and empathize with the human experience. As a platform for multicultural representation in the arena of performance and storytelling, UTC continues to serve as a bridge between artists of all mediums, our varying and respective communities of color and our communities’ youth. UTC engages itself in the work of community responsibility and has worked to raise awareness concerning many of the social issues facing our diverse backgrounds.

For tickets/information visit UTC’s website at www.UrbanTheaterChicago.org. For additional information on UTC, visit: www.facebook.com/UrbanTheater orwww.twitter.com/UrbanTheater.