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Repertorio Español announces the premiere of Puerto Rico’s smash comedy, “El insólito caso de Mis’ Piña Colada” (The Preposterous Case of Miss Piña Colada) by Carlos Ferrari.

May 17, 2010

For Immediate Release
Contact: José Antonio Cruz, Repertorio Español
+1-212-225-9955 or

Repertorio Español announces the premiere of Puerto Rico’s smash comedy, “El insólito caso de Mis’ Piña Colada” (The Preposterous Case of Miss Piña Colada) by Carlos Ferrari.

The play, which has had hundreds of performances in Puerto Rico, arrives in New York for a new production under the direction of René Buch, Repertorio’s Artistic Director.

“The Preposterous Case of Miss Piña Colada,” a comedy about extreme presumptions, will have its premiere on Tuesday, June 8, 2010 at 7pm at Repertorio Español during a gala to benefit ¡Dignidad!, the Company’s Education Program. Previews begin on Friday, June 4, 2010.

“The Preposterous Case of Miss Piña Colada”will play in repertory throughout the summer and is presented in Spanish with live simultaneous English translation at Repertorio Español’s Gramercy Arts Theater on 138 East 27th Street in Manhattan, New York.

*Synopsis, performance schedule and production team biographies follow
*Press Portal with high resolution photos:
*Show’s Web Page:

Repertorio Español is proud to announce the premiere of “The Preposterous Case of Miss Piña Colada,” a play by Argentine-born Carlos Ferrari. Mr. Ferrari is a prolific playwright who is known for his skillful ability to capture the Puerto Rican idiosyncrasy and humor in his plays, most of which have been amongst the most popular plays in the history of Puerto Rican theater.

Previews for the production begin on Friday, June 4 at 8pm and the official premiere will be on Tuesday, June 8 at 7pm during Repertorio Español’s annual gala. All performances will be at Repertorio Español’s Gramercy Arts Theater located at 138 East 27th Street in Manhattan, New York (between Lexington and Third Avenues). Tickets start at $25 and may be reserved at; by calling 212-225-9999 or in person at the theater’s box office (Sun-Thurs 9am-7pm, Fri-Sat 9am-9pm).

“The Preposterous Case of Miss Piña Colada”is a comedy about a mother’s irrational actions to keep up appearances and her unrelenting struggle to make her family fit in a higher social class than their own. Set in the home of a middle class Puerto Rican family, Ofelia, mother of three and a widow, makes sure that her daughter is crowned queen in the Miss Piña Colada beauty pageant. To outdo her nemesis in social presumption, she pawns, re-finances, fends off debt collectors and even forces her children to take any job imaginable, even if it involves breaking the law, all to pay for the contest’s expenses. The author uses Latin America’s fascination for beauty pageants to motivate the audience to think about society’s perchance to inflate the importance of trivialities.

Carlos Ferrari was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He studied acting at Buenos Aires’ Instituto Moderno de Arte, toured throughout the country, obtained the Caja Nacional de Ahorro Postal Award for his plays and wrote for TV and radio. In 1960 he traveled to New York to study TV and radio direction at RCA. During the late 1960’s he traveled to Puerto Rico, fell in love with the island and decided to stay. He directed several of his own plays for the renowned Puerto Rican Theater Company ‘Teatro del Sesenta’. Some of these included “Amor en el caserío” (Love in the Projects,) “Puerto Rico Fuá” (which became one of Puerto Rico’s greatest box office hits and toured to Venezuela and France), “La cocina” (The Kitchen) and “El otro Agueybana” (The Other Agueybana.) In 1979 he founded ‘Nuestro Teatro’ Theater Company where he produced and directed his own plays in repertory for 14 consecutive years. These included “El insólito caso de Mis’ Piña Colada” (The Preposterous Case of Miss Piña Colada,) “La nena se casa” (Our Girl is Getting Married,) “¡En’dito, tan bueno que era!” (Poor Thing, He Was Such a Good Person) and “Con el agua hasta el cuello” (Up to My Neck in Water). All of these broke box office and performance records. Ferrari has won numerous awards for his work including the Theater Critics Circle Awards of Puerto Rico, Puerto Rico’s UNESCO’s Association Award and a special recognition by the House of Representatives of Puerto Rico.

René Buch holds an MFA from Yale School of Drama and a Law Degree from Havana University. In 1968 he founded Repertorio Español along with Gilberto Zaldívar directing “La dama duende” (The Phantom Lady). As Repertorio’s Artistic Director, Mr. Buch has directed many plays – among them: “La Celestina,” “Las Pericas,” “Romeo and Juliet,” “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?,” “The Glass Menagerie,” “Life is a Dream,” “Secret Injury/Secret Revenge,” “Fuente Ovejuna,” “El Burlador De Sevilla,” “Acto Cultural,” “El Dia Que Me Quieras,” “Wounded Buffalo,” “La Gringa,” “Anna in The Tropics,” “O.K.,” “Boxcar,” the New York premiere of Lorca’s “El Público,” the complete trilogy of Lorca’s rural tragedies (4 productions of “Blood Wedding,” 3 productions of “Yerma,” 3 productions of “The House of Bernarda Alba”) plus 3 different productions of “Doña Rosita the Spinster” and Calderon’s “Absalom’s Tresses.” Buch has earned respect from critics, peers and audiences alike for his innovative stagings of Spanish classics and contemporary plays. He was recently awarded the Theater Communications Group’s Theater Practitioner Award and the Arts & Business Council’s ENCORE Award as well as numerous HOLA and ACE Awards.

Fernando Then founded the San Martín Theater Company in Caracas, Venezuela and worked for the International Theater Festival of Caracas as an Assistant to the Executive Director. He is the recipient of the Municipal Theater Award, the Casa del Artista (Artist’s House) Award and the Orden Mérito al Trabajo awarded by Venezuela’s President for over 15 years of service to the nation’s culture. As Repertorio Español’s Production Manager he oversees Repertorio’s company of actors and is responsible for the artistic integrity of a repertory of 15 different productions and over 300 performances per year.

Wanda Arriaga (Ofelia) holds a BA in Humanities from the University of Puerto Rico (UPR) and an MFA in Acting from the University of California in San Diego. She trained with Antunes Filho in Brazil; Enrique Buenaventura and Floyd Ruhmor in the U.S. and with the Suzuki Acting Method in Japan. She has worked with Mixed Blood Company in Minessotta; Teatro Thalía in Queens, NY and co-founded Teatro Círculo in New York. Her credits with Repertorio Español include “Blood Wedding,” “Me saqué la lotería” (I Won The Lottery,) and “Real Women Have Curves.” Iliana Guibert (Esperancita) graduated from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts and trained at the Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute. Credits at Repertorio Español include “Botánica,” “El Cano,” and “The Barber Shop.” She is a regular at the TV show Sesame Street where she has appeared along with Anne Bancroft, Rosie O’Donnell and Big Bird. Gredivel Vásquez (Loreley) was born in Valencia, Venezuela and joined Repertorio’s Company of Actors in 2000. Her credits with the Company include “The House of Bernarda Alba,” “The Feast of the Goat,” “Blood Wedding” and “Chronicle of a Death Foretold.” She studied ballet with the Nina Nikanorova Company and acting in the Taller del Método in Venezuela. Vásquez has received numerous HOLA and ACE Awards. Ricardo Hinoa (Nataniel) holds a BS degree in Bio-Medics. He studied acting with the famous Mala Yerba Theatre in Ecuador and was a member of UPR’s Traveling Theatre. He has worked extensively in dramatic serials and television commercials in Puerto Rico. Among his stage credits are Jazmina Reza’s “Art,” Gorky’s “Summerfolks,” Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night,” Fernando de Roja’s “La Celestina,” and Jorge Isaac’s “María.” Hinoa is a member of the Society of the Educational Arts (SEA) and co-founder of the Caborka Theater Company. Credits with Repertorio Español include “La gringa,” “The Feast of the Goat” and “Captain Pantoja & The Special Service.” Rita Ortiz (Abigail) graduated from the UPR’s Drama Department and was a member of its Traveling Theatre. Theater credits include "La vuelta al hogar" (The Return Home) directed by Dean Zayas; “Jesus el hijo del hombre," (Jesus, Son of Man) directed by Roberto Ramos Perea; “La celestina," directed by Rafael Acevedo and "Las troyanas,” directed by Edgar Quiles for the Ateneo Puertorriqueño. Her work with Repertorio Español includes “Madre (el drama padre)" and "La gringa". Mario Mattei (Domingo) holds a BA in Acting from UPR. He has been a member of Repertorio’s Company of Actors for over four years. His credits with the Company include “The Feast of the Goat,” “La gringa” and “El Quijote.” Mattei recently won an HOLA Award for Most Outstanding Male Performance in New York for his work in “El avaro” at Tocando Puertas Theater.

The production design – set, costumes and lighting -- for “The Preposterous Case of Miss Piña Colada”is by Robert Weber Federico. Federico designed his first production at Repertorio Español in 1971 and joined the company as its full-time Resident Designer in 1972. Since then, he has created sets, lighting and costumes for hundreds of productions, as well as designing the lighting for Spanish dancer Pilar Rioja’s performances throughout the United States. He is the Company’s Executive Director.

Repertorio Español, now on its 42nd season, was founded in 1968 by Gilberto Zaldívar and René Buch to present the best of Latin American, Spanish and Hispanic-American theatre in distinctive, quality productions, and to bring theatre to a broad audience in New York City and across the country, including seniors, students and Hispanics of all national backgrounds. The organization has been awarded Drama Desk, OBIE and New York State Governor's Awards.

Tickets for ”The Preposterous Case of Miss Piña Colada” start at $25 and may be reserved online at; by phone 212-225-9999 or in person at Repertorio Español located on 138 East 27th Street, New York, NY 10016 between Lexington and Third Avenues (Sun-Thurs 9am-7pm, Fri-Sat 9am-9pm).

CLICK FOR A FULL PERFORMANCE SCHEDULE FOR “The Preposterous Case of Miss Piña Colada”:


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138 East 27th Street, New York, NY 10016
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