If there’s one thing I love about La Bruja (born Caridad De La Luz), it’s that the woman refuses to be put in a box. Like so many successful Latinas I know, she’s good at more than just one thing and she’s not afraid to try her hand at them all. Since her star-making turn on HBO’s Def Poetry Jam, she’s been an activist, model, singer-songwriter (I always loved her reggaeton-flavored remake of Madonna’s “La Isla Bonita” off her debut album, Brujalicious) dancer, actor, writer—you name it. As a dear friend of hers is quoted saying in a recent New York Times piece, “She exemplifies in many ways the Nuyorican woman of her generation.”
In her current off-Broadway show, Boogie Rican Blvd: The Musical—written by La Bruja and directed by Nelson Vasquez (who played Johnny Pacheco in El Cantante)—the multifaceted Latina plays seven different characters from one Bronx neighborhood. Family and friends examine life, love and regret using words, song and dance and the front of a bodega as their stage. La Bruja plays Don Jose, the owner of the bodega, a patriarch and father of three girls; Cuca, a teen poet who has just found out she's pregnant; Pito, a wannabe rapper and Cuca’s future baby daddy; Lola, a woman who has chosen a life of drugs over motherhood; and Maribella, a proud virgin, to name a few.
The cutest thing is that La Bruja’s own daughter has a cameo in the play! Following in Mami’s footsteps, little Carina writes poetry and sings in the choir at Isaac Clason School, just like her mother did years ago.
So don’t miss your last chance to check out the show at the Puerto Rican Traveling Theater. It runs Tuesday through Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 3 p.m. Closing night is this Sunday, July 26.
You can purchase tickets one of three ways: