Theater lovers, rejoice! There’s a hot new ticket in town, and you don’t have to travel to Times Square to see it. Sancocho, a play by Christin Eve Cato, is making its off-Broadway debut at WP Theater (located at 2162 Broadway between 76th and 77th streets).
Produced by the Latinx Playwrights Circle, WP Theater and The Sol Project, Sancocho has arrived in New York by way of Chicago, where it premiered to acclaim in October 2022 as part of Destinos, the Chicago International Latin Theater Festival. Cato, a Bronx-born playwright who attended the Upper West Side’s own Fiorello H. LaGuardia high school, regularly honors her roots throughout her impressive body of work — and Sancocho is no exception.
The play is centered around two Puerto Rican sisters — Renata and Caridad — as they navigate family tension, their father’s declining health and an uncertain future ahead. As old wounds and past secrets begin to bubble to the surface, so does Caridad’s sancocho — the traditional stew which has been a cultural staple within Latin American cuisine for over 500 years.
Sancocho may be a stew for all seasons, but it’s particularly apt in times of crisis or chaos, as it requires only one pot, is incredibly adaptable, and can feed anyone who’s hungry. The dish is comforting and familiar — not to mention crucial to the plot of this play. “[The sisters] have the hard conversations, face down their generational trauma and find a path forward toward healing. The stew that they prepare throughout the evening serves as a metaphor for this process, as ingredients are sliced and crushed to create a meal ‘healing to the soul,’” The Chicago Tribune wrote.
Directed by Rebecca Martinez, the associate artistic director of WP Theater, Sancocho features an all-Latinx cast and design team, led by stars Zuleyma Guevara and Shirley Rumierk. Critics of the original run praised its authenticity and inspirational themes, with The Chicago Reader dubbing the production “rich family fare” and stating, “Sancocho highlights the significance of familia for the best or otherwise. The dialogue melds between English and Spanish sweetly as the sancocho literally simmers on the stove. The scent made me long to return to Puerto Rico to devour más mofongo y tostones.”
Previews of Sancocho’s limited run begin on March 11, with the official opening night set for Thursday, March 23. Tickets for preview performances start at just $29, and are priced from $39 after March 23. The performance schedule is Tuesday through Thursday at 7 p.m., Friday at 8 p.m., Saturday at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m., and Sunday at 3 p.m. The engagement will end on Sunday, April 9.
More information and tickets are available here (use promo code ILOVEUWS for a $10 discount!).