We have grand theatre traditions going back to Roman Italy, Renaissance Italy, Medieval liturgical drama driven by the Roman Catholic Church, Italian Commedia dell’arte, and Spanish Golden Age Theatre.
The Romans essentially absorbed the traditions of Greek settlers in southern Italy. That connects us to Greek theatre which is the root of all European theatre. Greece is interesting because it provides a connection to both western and eastern civilization.
Spanish Golden Age Theatre
Spanish Golden Age Theatre is notable for the sheer volume of productions, and how theatre was enjoyed by all levels of society from the royal court to the working class.
Teatro Puerto Rico
Teatro Puerto Rico was a Hispanic community theater in the South Bronx. It was a center of NYC’s Puerto Rican community from 1948 until the neighborhood began to decline in the 1960s.
It was the place where Latin screen stars and musicians reached their audience. Many of us remember going to Teatro Puerto Rico as children.
The building is still there. In the 1990s, it was bought by the Iglesia Universal del Reino de Dios (Universal Church of the Kingdom of God). It’s a Pentecostal Christian church headquartered in Rio de Janeiro.
Teatro Puerto Rico was at 490 East 138th St, The Bronx, NY 10454 (at Brook Avenue).