Skip to main content
Past Productions

The Romance of Magno Rubio

Lonnie Carter’s Obie-winning fairy tale, based on the short story by Carlos Bulosan.

Coming Soon

All Ages | Non-sexual, non-violent | 77 minutes

Set in the central valleys of California in the 1930s, the play focuses on Magno Rubio, an illiterate Filipino farm worker and his pen-pal courtship with Clarabelle, a white woman from Arkansas who advertises in the back pages of a “lonely hearts” magazine. Believing he’s found the woman of his dreams, Magno fantasizes about their life together, only to soon realize that reality and dreams do not always align.
THE ROMANCE OF MAGNO RUBIO was filmed in July 2003 by Francisco Aliwalas at The Cultural Center of the Philippines in Manila before a live audience, for the Sangandaan Festival. Presented with support from the Asian Cultural Council. Ma-Yi Theater Company broadcast the play in May 2020, where it received over 90,000 views.

Please support our artists. Donate directly to their Venmo Accounts by clicking the yellow highlighted text next to their names. Thank you.


Arthur Acuña | Performer

Antonio Del Rosario | Performer

Ramon De Ocampo | Performer

Ron Domingo | Performer

Jojo Gonzalez | Magno Rubio

Creative Team

Lonnie Carter | Playwright

Carlos Bulosan | Author, "The Romance of Magno Rubio"

Ralph B. Peña | Original Filipino Text

Fabian Obispo | Original Music, Sound Design

Loy Arcenas | Director, Scenic & Costume Design

James Vermuelen | Lighting Design

Cristina Sison | Production Stage Manager

Suzette Porte & Jorge Z. Ortoll | Producers

Kristin Jackson | Movement Coach

Francisco Aliwalas | Cinematography

As we navigate these tumultuous times with resilience, humor and grit, we’re also forging new ground. This talented theater community needs your support.