September 14–October 8, 2023

In this dark comedy, CABORCA explores the meaning of independence - for a country and for a person. Family, friends and lovers of one Puerto Rican man who has failed them all attempt to disentangle themselves from the expectations of the church, society, and themselves, drawing parallels to the history of oppression and the meaning of freedom for the Puerto Rican people.

Live-feed video and dance carry the play from Lares, Puerto Rico to Harlem, New York and back as it flips between Spanish and English with supertitles in both languages throughout.

Written and directed by Javier Antonio González. Full creative team and rotating cast performance schedule available at

Running time: 2 hours, 45 minutes (one intermission)

Image by Marcos Toledo and Juan Carlos Malavé



CABORCA is a bilingual ensemble working in theater and film under the direction of Javier Antonio González since 2009. The company’s 14 artists from Puerto Rico, USA, China, and Korea draw on disciplinary backgrounds in theater, visual arts, postmodern dance, environmental design, and music. Holding particular space among the Puerto Rican diaspora, CABORCA continually reinvents their practices to produce reflections on colonial power.

About Javier Antonio González

Javier Antonio González is a playwright, director, and filmmaker from Vega Baja, Puerto Rico and the founding artistic director of CABORCA. Selected works include Zoetrope; Distant Star (adapted from Roberto Bolaño); Open up, Hadrian; and award winning feature film, The Entitlement. Publications include Encuentro: Latinx Performance for the New American Theater (Northwestern University Press), Plays and Playwrights 2011 (New York Theatre Experience), Revista Conjunto (Casa de las Américas, Cuba), and The Puerto Rico Review. Van Lier Directing Fellow and  member of the Public Theater’s Emerging Writers Group.


This production of Zoetrope is presented with generous support from the Venturous Theater Fund of the Tides Foundation and from the Café Royal Foundation

Zoetrope was showcased in 2015 at Pregones Theater and developed through Artist Space at Pregones and in residency at the Loisaida Center.

Panel Discussion: 26 Sep, 6pm

In the recognition of the 125th anniversary of the Hispanic-American War of 1898, join us for a conversation about the largely unspoken legacy of US imperialism in Puerto Rico and former colonies.