Puerto Rican Festival in Rochester to include performances by well-known artists. Here's the lineup

·5 min read
Canchany Santiago plays the cuatro during the Puerto Rican festival. The cuatro eight strings which are actually four groups of double strings that provides a higher pitched guitar sound.

If you grew up in proximity to Puerto Rican culture, both Manny Manuel and Vico C are household names, despite the vast difference in genres they perform. But whether it's hasta abajo with reggaetón or nonstop twirling with merengue, both artists have the common goal to make you dance.

And that is exactly what organizers of the Puerto Rican Festival hope to bring to this year's festivities, which include merengue superstar Manny Manuel and old-school reggaetón royalty Vico C as headliners for the three-day event coming back to Frontier Field for the first time in two years.

"This is one of the most musically diverse (PR Festivals) in a long time, and I think it's amazing. It gives everybody a flavor of our culture, not just salsa or reggaetón," said Orlando Ortiz, president of the Puerto Rican Festival Inc.

More: Rochester's Puerto Rican Festival is back at Frontier Field. Here's what you need to know

Ortiz said that every year is a struggle to provide the highest quality of entertainment, but after two years of being away from Frontier Field, they have curated a lineup that embraces Puerto Rican culture.

The 2022 Puerto Rican Festival will debut a Thursday to Saturday format beginning Aug. 4.

The Lineup

Vico C

Known as “el filósofo del rap” (the rap philosopher), Vico C became a sensation in Latin America and Spanish-speaking households thanks to his fresh spin on the Hip Hop genre.

Born in Brooklyn but raised in San Juan, Puerto Rico, Luis Armando Lozada took on the stage name of Vico C and became a hip hop artist in the mid 80s, inspired by the growing genre in the United States and the impact it was having on the island.

His music varies between Spanish rap and reggaetón, a Caribbean genre derived from Dominican Dembow and other Caribbean and Latin American sounds. Alongside artists like Tego Calderón, Daddy Yankee, and Ivy Queen — among others — Vico C is recognized as one of the founding fathers of the genre, with a discography going back to 1988.

He will be performing on the main stage at Puerto Rican Festival on Saturday, Aug. 6.

Manny Manuel

For those planning on going with a significant other, Manny Manuel is your guy, with a repertoire of iconic love songs in the form of merengue and boleros.

At the beginning of his career, Manuel worked closely with music groups based off the center region of Puerto Rico, but made a name for himself by joining the locally known group, Los Sabrosos del Merengue, with whom he released several singles and albums.

Manuel went solo in 1994, and since then he has released over 16 albums and several singles, and has established himself as an authority in romance, known as "el rey de los corazones", king of hearts.

Manuel takes the stage at the Puerto Rican Festival on Friday, Aug. 5.


An up and coming artist in Puerto Rico, ELYSANIJ, has already collaborated with big name artists such as Nicky Jam, Olga Tañón and Ñengo Flow. From reggaetón to trap and some R&B, ELYSANIJ, real name Janielys Maldonado, has been making strides in the Puerto Rican and Latin American urban scene.

The artist gathered popularity with her "urban version" of Killing Me Softly by Fugees, which has over 10.5 million views on YouTube as over two million streams on Spotify.

She will be performing at PR Fest on Friday, Aug. 5.

Puerto Rican Power

This tropical orchestra formed in the 70's by bassist Jesús Castro at the height of salsa dominating the Latin American sphere. It was a time when salsa orchestras were led and defined by their musical directors, not the lead singers. Trumpet player Luisito Ayala took control, and eventually added singer Tito Rojas.

Since then, the group has released over a dozen albums through the decades, both in English and in Spanish. Although Rojas passed in 2020, the group has continued to tour and perform in Puerto Rico and across the United States.

You can watch Puerto Rican Power on Thursday, Aug. 4 at Frontier Field. Thursday is the only day when admission to Puerto Rican Festival is free of charge.

Gerardo Rivas

Gerardo Rivas is no stranger to salsa, being the son of Jerry Rivas, singer of El Gran Combo, one of the most famous Puerto Rican salsa orquestras (who have performed at PR Fest in the past).

Rivas is best known as half of the salsa duo NG², which released four albums in less than a decade before separating in 2020. As a solo artist, Rivas has released dozens of singles, including his most salsa song "Happy."

Rivas will be performing on August 6 at Frontier Field.

Victoria Sanabria

Although Victoria Sanabria might not be the most known in the United States, she is a staple in the Puerto Rican folkloric scene, specializing in trova, a genre born from the campesino or jíbaro culture. Those terms are hard to define in English, but jíbaros and/or campesinos are those who live in the countryside.

Sanabria's lengthy career as a trovadora has earned her the title of "La Diosa de la Trova" (the goddess of trova) in Puerto Rico. She has put out nearly half a dozen albums, and has over 100k streams on Spotify.

Sanabria will perform at PR Fest on Saturday, August 6.

If you go

Festival hours:

  • 4 to 11 p.m., Thursday, Aug. 4: Free admission all evening

  • 4 to 11 p.m., Friday, Aug. 5: Paid admission

  • Noon to 11 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 6: Free admission from 12-2 p.m.

Ticket prices:

  • Advance tickets: Free admission Thursday; $10 per day Friday and Saturday $10.00/day

  • Purchased at Door: $15 Friday and Saturday

  • Seniors and children ages 6 and older: $5 Friday and Saturday

  • Children ages 5 and younger: Free admission all three days

More information is available at the Puerto Rican Festival page on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PRFEST

Natalia Rodríguez Medina is a bilingual reporter covering the Puerto Rican and Latino population for the Democrat and Chronicle in partnership with Report for America. Follow her on Twitter at @nataliarodmed or email her at nrodriguezmedina@gannett.com. You can support her work with a tax-deductible donation to Report for America.

This article originally appeared on Rochester Democrat and Chronicle: Puerto Rican Festival 2022 in Rochester NY: Concert lineup, ticket info