A native of Puerto Rico, Rick made his professional debut at age 10 in the San Juan production of the musical ‘THE ME NOBODY KNOWS”. He made his television debut at age 15 dancing with Puerto Rican bombshell Iris Chacon on her weekly program. The same year he appeared in Miller/Reich’s ‘C’EST MAGNIFIQUE’, a Vegas-style revue at the Club Tropicoro in the El San Juan Hotel. By the time Rick enrolled at Sarah Lawrence College he was a veteran performer. There he immersed himself in the Liberal Arts program with a concentration in dance, theater and music. While at Sarah Lawrence he received a scholarship to the Alvin Ailey School of American Dance, and continued independent studies in Art History and Dance History through a Sarah Lawrence year in New York program. After graduating, Rick joined a group of classmates in a production of ‘STREET DREAMS’ the musical at La Mama Etc.
His first paid New York job was dancing on a television special titled ‘THE BEST OF EVERYTHING’ with Hal Linden. While waiting tables at Serendipity Restaurant he landed his first Off-Broadway show. ‘STREET HEAT’ reopened the theater at Studio 54 after it’s disco heyday, and was the first musical to feature Rap music and what later came to be known as Hip Hop dance. The following year Rick made his Broadway debut in ‘LEADER OF THE PACK’ the Ellie Greenwich musical directed and choreographed by Michael Peters. Two weeks before the show closed, Rick was cast as ‘Action’ in the National Tour of ‘WEST SIDE STORY’ and was thrilled to be working with Jerome Robbins. He went on to play ‘Riff’ in the Michigan Opera Theater production of ‘WEST SIDE STORY’ and toured extensively as ‘Bernardo’ in numerous national and international productions helmed by Alan Johnson and vetted by Jerome Robbins. Rick worked closely with Rob Marshall and Graciela Danielle on the Broadway production of ‘THE MYSTERY OF EDWIN DROOD’, and that same year danced in Michael Jackson’s ‘BAD’ video directed by Martin Scorsese. His next Broadway show was the last musical to play the Mark Hellinger Theater; Peter Allen’s musical ‘LEGS DIAMOND’ was choreographed by Alan Johnson, directed by Robert Allen Acherman, and starred Peter Allen and Julie Wilson. The original production of ‘KISS OF THE SPIDERWOMAN’ was Rick’s first collaboration with Broadway legends Hal Prince, Susan Stroman, John Kander and Fred Ebb. John and Fred also contributed new material to Chita Rivera’s act, which Rick performed with Wayne Cilento. Rick also had the privilege to work with Raul Julia in the Broadway revival of ‘MAN OF LA MANCHA’. His next show with Graciela Danielle was the original production of ‘THE GOODBYE GIRL’ the musical, starring Martin Short and Bernadette Peters. The creative team included Neil Simon, Marvin Hamlisch, Gene Saks, and subsequently, Michael Kidd. Following this production, Rick starred in the independent feature “THE NEXT STEP’ and received critical acclaim for his feature debut.
After moving to Los Angeles, Rick worked on a few TV shows including ‘FIRST TIME OUT’, ‘SABRINA THE TEENAGE WITCH’, ‘FRASIER’, and the Disney TV movie ‘ANNIE’ directed and choreographed by Rob Marshall. He also played Raoul in the Odyssey theater production of ‘EATING RAOUL’ directed by Scott Whitman. Soon after, Albert Marre the original director of ‘MAN OF LA MANCHA’, requested Rick for a national tour starring Robert Goulet. Rick left the tour to work on the American premiere of ‘RAGTIME’ in LA; his third show with Graciela Danielle and his first show with Frank Galati. Rick was also a part of the celebrated Reprise production of ‘HAIR’ directed by Arthur Seidelman. Rick’s other film roles include, a villainous police man in ‘MEXICO CITY’ directed by Richard Shepard, and a Cuban casino owner named Raphael, in ‘TOUGH LUCK’ with Armande Assante. In the winter of 2001 he landed the dream job. Dancing and singing in the Oscar winning film ‘CHICAGO’, directed by Rob Marshall and featuring some of the best musical theater performers alive today. Rick also performed with Catherine Zeta-Jones and Queen Latifah in a production number choreographed by Rob Marshall and John DeLuca for the Oscar telecast. He assisted his good friend director/writer Jordan Roberts, and has a cameo appearance in ‘AROUND THE BEND’, starring Michael Caine, Chris Walken, and Josh Lucas.
In the commercial and voice over world, Rick’s career spans both english and spanish language campaigns for McDONALDS, COCA COLA, COORS LIGHT, ISUZU, APPLE, CHEVRON, HBO, SMIRNOFF ICE, and many others. His most successful campaign was for SONY Play Station Portable (PSP), where he voiced an animated dustball. The original dustball spot was a youtube sensation and inspired SONY to launch a dustball web site, more commercials and an extensive European campaign. As a performer, Rick has worked on numerous live industrial shows for STATE FARM, McDONALDS, McNEIL, MICROSOFT, PONTIAC, HONDA, INTERCONTINENTAL HOTEL GROUP, HOWARD JOHNSON, UNYSIS and others. Rick has also worked on the production side of industrials as an executive speech coach, director and choreographer.
Rick was seen as ‘Black’ in the celebrated Hudson Theater production of Michael John LaChiusa’s ‘WILD PARTY’. He performed in the L.A. production of ‘TEN COMMANDMENTS’ starring Val Kilmer, and played Sam Carmichael in the Las Vegas company of ‘MAMMA MIA’.
He met Lin-Manuel Miranda, Thomas Kail and Alex Lacamoire in a workshop of a fledgling project called IN THE HEIGHTS at The O’Neill Center, and later joined the Broadway cast as the patriarch Kevin Rosario opposite Priscilla Lopez. Rick has also returned to the barrio playing Kevin in Pittsburgh for PCLO and at the Kennedy Center in Washington DC. Recently he was cast as King George III in the And Peggy Tour of HAMILTON. He joined Lin-Manuel as the company opened in Puerto Rico to raise funds for the Flamboyan Foundation promoting the arts and arts education on the island. Currently, the 1st Puerto Rican King and the amazing And Peggy Cast are in an open ended run at the Orpheum Theater in San Francisco.