Rauw Alejandro Arrives With Quadruple Sellout At Coliseo de Puerto Rico (Latin Grammys Special)

Rauw Alejandro
Courtesy Duars Entertainment
– Rauw Alejandro
Puerto Rico’s own Rauw Alejandro during one of his four sellout shows at the Coliseo de Puerto Rico in late October. Demand for tickets was so high that organizers contemplated the idea of doing two shows per day.

It’s a story we’ve heard repeatedly during the pandemic. An artist blows up but is all but unable to perform for the better part of two years. When they finally get out there, the show is a hit, with pent-up demand leading to major ticket sales.

Still, most don’t sell out an arena four times. 
“He’s a superstar,” says Eric Duars, head of Duars Entertainment, the multi-faceted label, management company and promoter for Rauw Alejandro, who just sold out four nights at the Coliseo de Puerto Rico in San Juan. Duars discovered the soon-to-be star – who had a natural charisma and knack for the hooky earworm – in 2016, when the former football player who could cut a rug on the dance floor was working at a store. Much has changed.
Alejandro’s “Todo de ti,” which dropped in May 2021 as the second single from his June release Vice Versa, peaked at No. 2 on the Top Songs Global on Spotify, while the album charted at No. 17 on the Billboard 200, No. 1 on the U.S. Latin chart and No. 1 in Spain. While Duars serves as Alejandro’s label, he has a distribution deal with Sony Music Latin. Alejandro is nominated for three Latin Grammy awards, including Record of the Year and Song of the Year for “Todo de ti.”
With barely a tour of Spain in 2021 and a pandemic-era livestream under his belt, the Puerto Rican native made up for the live shutdown in a big way, with the four arena sellouts (capacity 18,500) Oct. 21-24 coming in mere hours or, in the case of the second show, just 25 minutes. 
“For me it’s amazing. It’s amazing for Rauw, for the team, for everybody,” adds Duars, who was on a victory lap himself, enjoying Halloween with his family including two children while at Disneyworld during the interview for this article.
Alejandro’s Puerto Rico shows included first-class production, pyro and guest stars running the gamut from Sech, Wisin y Yandel and many others, with a different show each night with fans singing along and dancing to a full-fledged theatrical experience.  

Rauw Alejandro
Courtesy Duars Entertainment
– Rauw Alejandro
Cúrame: Rauw Alejandro has been on a lengthy U.S. tour in 2021, which just saw additional dates as a “Winter Bonus.” The dates are promoted by Zamora Live.
“In 2020 and 2021 in the pandemic, you work for streaming and music going to the DSPs and playlist positioning,” Duars adds. “That’s the only revenue you have. But now, adding the touring, you can’t even believe all the good things happening in the same moment.”
Duars, along with show producers Paco Lopez, Jose Dueño and in-house booker Rafael Hernandez, clearly had the fans and artist to make the shows happen. However, getting the dates was another matter.
“We were a year and a half without anything happening in the entertainment business, then suddenly it all opens up and all the promoters are calling the venues getting dates,” says Paco Lopez. “I called Eric saying it’s all booked! The good week-ends are booked for 2021! There has to be a way. We were challenging dates. That was hell for us, but we finally got that weekend.”
The shows sold out so quickly that Lopez says they could have easily done six, with more still possible, and the idea even came up to do multiple shows per day, although Duars thought better to not overdo it. 
Other challenges getting to show date presented themselves quickly.
“The day before the concert, there’s a basketball game at the venue, and the day after, there was another game. So the production, the logistics, was another hell,” adds Lopez, who has experience doing major shows at the venue including Wisin y Yandel’s eight-show run, a record that was later broken by Daddy Yankee’s 11. “We were between something totally different. It was hell but we finally pulled it off.”
While the Puerto Rico sellouts were a triumph on their own, Alejandro has somewhat quietly put on a full U.S. tour this fall, through Zamora Live Presents, with eight additional dates recently added as a “Winter Bonus” in multiple markets and venues as large as the 5,000 to 6,000-seat range.
Duars says right now he prefers to oversee Alejandro’s  touring in-house and find partners in each market, but that could change.
“For me it’s good to keep it in-house, but in 2023 we want to put Rauw on the big festivals and it’s much better when you have an agent or partner, like William Morris or UTA,” says Duars, who also counts rising talent among his clients including Eix, Pacho El Antifeka, Ally Brooke and others. “I believe in the upcoming artists, and in 2024-25, maybe 2028-29, I want to find these partners for Duars and for Rauw.”
While Alejandro is clearly set for touring the world stage, Duars and Lopez note the achievement of conquering Puerto Rico, the epicenter of reggaeton and in many ways a barometer for all Latin talent.  

Courtesy Duars Entertainment
– Rauw
Rauw celebrates with his team backstage. His career has been largely handled by Eric Duars of Duars Entertainment, which acts as label, promoter and manager.
And, close to 60,000 tickets is nothing to sneeze at. 
“If you make it in Puerto Rico, you can make it elsewhere,” says Lopez. “You can go to New York, Miami, it’s the temperature of artists in the Latin world. The Coliseo de Puerto Rico is the most important venue, ask any urban star.”
To that end, Lopez and Duars say the island deserves – and needs – its own major festival, which they may be working on right now.
“I said for the next year, I want to produce a three-day festival in Puerto Rico. Paco says, ‘I have the venue, I have everything!’” Duars says, laughing. He adds, “This guy Paco is a brain.”
“The idea is we’re a little island in the Caribbean, 100 by 35 miles, but we have the top artists in the world right now,” Lopez adds. “Reggaetón came from here. We have inspiration from Jamaica and Panama, but we developed it and we don’t have a festival, we don’t have a brand in Puerto Rico. That’s why we want to create this. We’ll see what happens. But we’re on it.” s