A.K.A La Comadre

La Comadre, is a Puerto Rican woman who has been living in Paterson, New Jersey since she arrived from la Isla. She is the matriarch of her community which is why she decides to throw a goodbye party for one of the community members. Told through Latin American music and highlighted through projections, we attend the evening festivities and view how La Comadre balances hosting and protecting her barrio.

La Comadre, 40-50. Must be Afro-Latina or Indigenous Latina. Strong, gregarious, childlike but maternal. Sexual. Stubborn. A heavy smoker. La Comadre has been living in that 318 Union Ave., the apartment complex for 25 years. Ester, 40-50’s. Must be Black/African American or Afro-Latina. She is sharp and quick. She is resilient, maternal and the voice of reason. A caretaker. Ester lives in the neighborhood. Alejandro, 22. Latino. He is gentle and reserved. He is a caretaker. He tends to his sick mother. They are tenants at 318 Union Ave. Hector Morales, 40’s . Latino. Married to Melinda. Hard working, dedicated to his wife and children. The Morales family has been tenants at 318 Union Aven for years. They are in the process of moving to Florida. The Morales feels indebted to La Comadre, as she has supported them financially through rent party. Melinda Morales, Late 30’s. Any ethnicity. Not white. Married to Hector. Loving. Reserved but strong and honest. The Salsa Band/Tenants: A group of musicians (men and women) who traditionally play congas, bongos, bass, piano, tres, a horn section, and the smaller hand-held percussion instruments: claves, guíro, or maracas and/or trumpets.