Thursday, March 31, 2011

Upcoming HOLAfábrica Workshops


with Broadway performer Julio Agustín

Broadway performer-turned-audition coach and career consultant, Julio Agustín,
shares vital and proven transition strategies to take you
from struggling artist to working professional.

agustinWednesday, April 27, 2011
Teatro LATEA

Clemente Soto Vélez Cultural and Educational Center
107 Suffolk Street, Room 202
(bet. Rivington and Delancey streets), NYC

F to Delancey / J M Z to Essex /
M9, M14A buses

$30 for HOLA members
$50 for non-HOLA members
(Become a member of HOLA and the price difference will be allocated toward your membership registration fee!!)
Call (212) 253-1015 to register

Workshop includes: The Top Ten Transition Strategies • Making an Impact: Getting Noticed & Being Remembered • Creating a Compelling Character in Five Easy Steps

What You’ll Need: Workshop students should come prepared with audition materials as there will be a piano accompanist for the final hour. In addition, please also bring your headshots and resume and come prepared as if you were going to an actual audition.

What People Say About the Workshop:
“This workshop should be renamed the Transformation Workshop, because that is exactly what Julio does, transform each individual into the radiant self that they should be! He has a natural talent for seeking out the best in you and aiding you to bring it out. I booked my first musical lead right after taking his Transition Workshop!”

~Hjordy's Matos
Current Lead in Off-Broadway show
Plátanos & Collard Greens
Actress-Singer-Dancer (

“Julio taught his Transition Workshop to 40 of my students; they all raved about how much information they got from the class. Pages upon pages of notes were taken, and many of my students have already experienced successful professional auditions, having implemented much of Julio’s advice for actors. I would recommend this workshop for any group of performers, from college to professional.”

~Jonathan Flom
Author, Get the Callback!
Professor of Acting, Directing and Musical Theatre, Shenandoah Conservatory (

ABOUT JULIO: “I strive to provide students and clients with strategies, skills, and tools for transitioning from struggling artist to working professional.” Broadway performer, director and audition coach, Julio Agustín has coached clients working on and off-Broadway, in regional theatre and touring companies. Julio has over 15 years as a professional actor and Broadway performer including work in the disciplines of stage, screen, commercials and print. In addition to acting, he is also a writer and director with advanced degrees in Music Performance (FSU) and Theatre Directing (PSU). His greatest joy comes from helping people to discover their unique talents and create a plan of action that maximizes each of those talents.

ABOUT THE TRANSITION WORKSHOP: The Transition Workshop (TTW) takes students beyond mere talent to the very truth of how the industry works and helps them to discover their place within it. TTW does this by providing practical "take action" guideposts, guaranteeing the transition from struggling artist to working professional. Although the strategies are specifically formulated for performing artists, they are universal and can be used anytime one wants to move from “here” to “there.”

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Accent Reduction Seminar with GLENN ZURAW

Thursday, May 5, 2011
$25 (Non-HOLA members $35)

New and Returning Students

CSV Cultural and Educational Center
107 Suffolk Street, 2nd Floor, NYC
(F to Delancey / J M Z to Essex / M14A or M9 bus)

Hey HOLA Actors!

Wanna attend a really cool and fun workshop that is geared to helping you sound more “American?” Ya know, the way Americans “sing” when they speak has a reason and you’ll learn the “why.” If English is your SECOND LANGUAGE or even if you grew up here, in NYC, by attending the workshop, you’ll get some insight on how to sound more “Standard American” and less, well, whatever you sound like now! Sure, that Latin American accent sounds so sexy to us “Americans” and why not learn how to soften it for a role that requires less of it!

Do you know how many different ways you can say the phrase “He likes the color purple?” There are at least six (6) different ways to say that simple phrase and each one is TOTALLY DIFFERENT. Come to the workshop and find out how!

We at HOLA look forward to seeing you on the 5th!
Wine and cheese will be served (so that you are more relaxed…).

Glenn Zuraw
Certified ESL Teacher/Accent Reduction Coach

(212) 253-1015
$25 (non-HOLA members: $35)

Thoughts by some of his previous students...
"He [Zuraw] was great, knowledgeable, friendly and engaging."
"He gave us many tips and insights. Very amenable and clear."
"Very fun and informative. [He] dominated the topic."

"Great teacher. Thorough. Many more people can benefit from it."
"The instructor was patient and knowledgeable. Nice, friendly and respectful."
"Very informative, fun and friendly. Helpful."

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with Manuel Herrera

Six sessions
Tuesdays and Thursdays,
May 10 through May 26, 2011

from 6:30pm Sharp - 8:30pm!

HOLA Office
CSV Cultural and Educational Center
107 Suffolk Street, Room 302, NYC
(F to Delancey / J M Z to Essex / M9, M14A buses)

Manuel Herrera, HOLA Special Projects Director, actor, director, voiceover artist and Rights Acquisitions/Director of AudioLibros for Recorded Books, LLC will direct an advanced voice-over technique workshop for the experienced actor who wishes to fine-tune his/her technique. The workshop covers: diction and voicing in Spanish; interpretation and rhythm; character voices, and narration; professional audition and quick study techniques. Previous HOLA voiceover workshop students invited. Applicants should supply blank CD to record work progress. Optional production of demo tape available at additional cost. Actual voice-over copy will be used for this series. Small classes.

Workshop held at HOLA using the "WhisperRoom."

Register early as there is limited enrollment.
Registration confirmed upon payment. VISA, MC & AMEX accepted.
Small intimate classes (we promise)

HOLA members: $200 (HOLA Membership required)

Spanish voiceover jobs provide the greatest income potential for the Spanish speaking actor. Register early as there is limited enrollment.Registration confirmed upon payment. Call (212) 253-1015 to register.

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New Census Data Shows Areas of America Are Growing, Shrinking

Check out this article by Zachary Roth entitled "New Census Data Shows Areas of America Are Growing, Shrinking" from Yahoo! News which highlights the growth of the Latino/Hispanic and African American populations by clicking here.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Betcha Didn't Know...?

Some of the most notable names from the dawn of film and television are of Latino descent. Here are some of them.

In this edition, some Latinos who are second- and third-generation in show business.

Freddie Prinze, Jr., (1976- ), born Freddie James Prinze Cochran al estilo latino in Los Angeles, California, U.S., is an actor, producer and director. He rose to fame during the late 1990s and early 2000s, after starring in several Hollywood films aimed at teenage audiences, I Know What You Did Last Summer (1997) and its sequel, I Still Know What You Did Last Summer (1998), as well as She's All That (1999), Summer Catch (2001), Scooby-Doo (2002), Scooby-Doo 2: Monsters Unleased (2004), and Delgo (2008). He has also had acting roles in television shows, including "Freddie" and "24." He is the only child of Kathy Elaine Cochran (née Barber), a real estate agent of English, Irish and Native American descent; and Freddie Prinze, an actor and comedian of Puerto Rican and German descent. He grew up in Albuquerque, New Mexico and spent summers in Puerto Rico, where he learned about Latino and Puerto Rican culture from his paternal grandmother. He speaks fluent Spanish and Italian. He is married to actress Sarah Michelle Gellar, and currently works for World Wrestling Entertainment as a producer and director.

Clifton Collins, Jr. (1970- ), born in Los Angeles, California, U.S., is an actor of half-Mexican descent and the grandson of actor Pedro González-González. He has sometimes been credited as Clifton Gonzalez-Gonzalez to honor his grandfather. He first broke through the mainstream in 1997 with a performance as gang thug César Sánchez in the film 187 (with Samuel L. Jackson). He portrayed a gay hitman, named Frankie Flowers, for the Mexican drug cartels in the 2000 ensemble drama Traffic. In 2005, he won rave reviews for his subtle portrayal of killer Perry Smith in the fact-based film Capote. He starred in the 2005 film Dirty alongside Oscar winner Cuba Gooding, Jr. He also played a supporting role on the FX show "The Shield," as undercover ICE agent Hernán. Other film credits include Meance II Society, Poetic Justice, Price of Glory, Babel (directed by Alejandro González Iñárritu), Sunshine Cleaning, Star Trek, Extract, Tigerland, The Rules of Attraction, National Lampoon's TV: The Movie (which he co-produced) and The Boondock Saints II: All Saints Day . He has also directed two music videos for the country music group Zac Brown Band. He can be currently be seen on the NBC drama "The Event" in the role of Thomas.

Susan Kohner
(1936- ), born Susanna Kohner Tovar al estilo latino, is an actress originally from Los Angeles, California, U.S. Her father was the Czechoslovakian-born film producer Paul Kohner and her mother was the famed Mexican actress Lupita Tovar. She starred in several films in the late 1950s and early 1960s, including co-starring with Sal Mineo in both Dino (1957) and The Gene Krupa Story (1959). In 1959, she was cast as the racially ambiguous Sarah Jane, her most notable role, in the 1959 color remake of Imitation of Life, for which she received an Academy Award nomination and won the Golden Globe in the Best Supporting Actress categories. Other film credits All The Fine Young Cannibals and Freud: The Secret Passion. In 1964, Kohner married German novelist and fashion designer John Weitz, and retired from acting. Their children are the film directors Chris and Paul Weitz (see below).

Chris Weitz (1969- ), born Christopher John Weitz Kohner al estilo latino, is a producer, writer, director and actor. Originally from New York, New York, U.S., he is best known for his work with his brother, Paul Weitz, on the comedy films American Pie and About A Boy, as well as directing the film adaptations of the novel The Golden Compass and Twilight: New Moon. He is the son of actress Susan Kohner (see above) and novelist/fashion designer John Weitz. His grandmother Lupita Tovar starred in Santa, Mexico's first talkie, in 1932. He is married to Mercedes Martínez with whom he has one son, Sebastian. He began his film career as a co-writer on the 1998 animated film Antz. In 2002, the brothers co-wrote and directed About A Boy, which earned them an Academy Award nomination for Best Adapted Screenplay. He has produced a number of films including In Good Company and American Dreamz, both of which were directed by his brother, Paul. In June 2011, Summit Entertainment is releasing his latest film A Better Life, written by Eric Eason about a Hispanic gardener and his son in Los Angeles searching for their stolen truck. This film is unusual among Hollywood productions in that it is set in a Hispanic community and features an almost entirely Hispanic cast. He has also occasionally worked as an actor, playing the lead role in the 2000 comedy film Chuck & Buck and a bland suburbanite in Mr. & Mrs. Smith.

Paul Weitz
(1965- ), born Paul John Weitz Kohner al estilo latino, is a producer, writer, director and actor. Originally from New York, New York, U.S., he is best known for his work with his brother, Chris Weitz, on the comedy films American Pie and About A Boy, as well as directing the films In Good Company and American Dreamz. He is the son of actress Susan Kohner (see above) and novelist/fashion designer John Weitz. His grandmother Lupita Tovar starred in Santa, Mexico's first talkie, in 1932. He began his film career as a co-writer on the 1998 animated film Antz. In 2002, the brothers co-wrote and directed About A Boy, which earned them an Academy Award nomination for Best Adapted Screenplay. He directed the 2010 film Little Fockers, the sequel to Meet the Parents, and Meet the Fockers. He has written a number of plays, including Roulette, Privilege, Show People and Trust, all of which have been produced Off-Broadway in New York City.

• Wanna see other editions of "Betcha Didn't Know...?" Click here.

Latino Music Legends Honored By Being Immortalized on U.S. Postage Stamps

On Wednesday, March 16, 2011, five Latino musical legends were honored by having their likenesses emblazoned on "Forever" postage stamps as part of the U.S. Postal Service's "Latin Music Legends (Forever)." The stamps were designed by Ethel Kessler and painted by San Diego-based artist Rafael López. Those honored are Tito Puente, Celiz Cruz, Carmen Miranda, Carlos Gardel and Selena.

"The United States Postal Service has a long-standing tradition of honoring and depicting the events and people who have influenced American culture and history and have helped to define our nation," said Marie-Therese Domínguez, vice president of Government Relations and Public Policy for the U.S. Postal Service. "In the spirit of this rich tradition, we issue these new Forever stamps to celebrate Latin music legends and the distinctive musical genres and styles they each represented." The stamps were unveiled at the SXSW Music Festival in Austin, Texas, U.S.

HOLA Member Bochinche

Bochinche refers to "gossip." In this sense, we use it to mention HOLA members who are getting acting and performance gigs.

In addition to her role as Dr. Calliope (Callie) Torres on ABC's "Grey's Anatomy," Sara Ramírez, is a Tony Award-winning actor-singer. Her self-titled debut EP is now available on iTunes. The four-song set can be bought by clicking here.

Dominic Colón's new play Crush is being presented at the Downtown Urban Theater Festival. Also directed by Colón, the play features Robin De Jesús, Patty Dukes, D.J. Afanador, Sean Carvajal and Darlenis Durán in the cast and will have an April run in the Manhattan Movement & Arts Center (MMAC) in the Columbus Circle section of Manhattan.

Marisol Carrere can be seen in this television interview (along with director David Capurso) for NY1 Noticias in reference to the film I Am Julia (which Ms. Carrere wrote, starred and co-produced) by clicking here.

Rodney Roldán just booked roles on episodes of "Damages" (FX) and "Celebrity Closeup" (Biography Channel).

Elizabeth Rivera de García will be performing spoken word poetry with the band Rome Neal's Women in Jazz at Jazz Consortium-Brooklyn in the Bedford-Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn.

If you are an HOLA member and want to submit a bochinche item, send us an e-mail at If you are not an HOLA member, why not join?

SAG, AFTRA Inch Closer to Merger

Check out this article by Daniel Holloway in Backstage by clicking here.

HOLA Legends: José Ferrer

José Ferrer, born José Vicente Ferrer de Otero y Cintrón on January 8, 1912 in Santurce, San Juan, Puerto Rico, was an actor and theater and film director. He was the first Latino/Hispanic actor to win an Academy Award.

He was the son of María Providencia Cintrón and Rafael Ferrer, the latter an attorney and writer. He studied in the Swiss boarding school Institut Le Rosey and graduated from Princeton University. He made his Broadway debut in 1935. He played Iago in Margaret Webster's 1943 Broadway production of Othello, starring Paul Robeson in the title role, Webster as Emilia, and Ferrer's wife at the time, Uta Hagen, as Desdemona. It became the longest-running production of a Shakespeare play staged in the U.S., a record it still holds. His Broadway directing credits include The Shrike, Stalag 17, The Fourposter, Twentieth Century, Carmelina, My Three Angels and The Andersonville Trial.

He may be best remembered for his performance in the title role of Edmond Rostand's play Cyrano de Bergerac, which he first played on Broadway in 1946. The production became one of the hits of the 1946-47 Broadway season, earning him the first Best Actor Tony Award for his depiction of the long-nosed poet/swordsman (tied with Fredric March for Ruth Gordon's play Years Ago.

He reprised the role of Cyrano onstage at the New York City Center under his own direction in 1953, as well as in two films: the 1950 American film based on the Broadway play (directed by Michael Gordon) and the 1964 French film Cyrano et d'Artagnan (directed by Abel Gance). He also played Cyrano in two different productions for television, each of which earned him an Emmy Award nomination.

He made his film debut in 1948 in the Technicolor epic Joan of Arc as the weak-willed Dauphin opposite Ingrid Bergman, for which he earned his first Academy Award nomination. He won the Academy Award for Cyrano de Bergerac two years later.

Some of his notable film roles include Toulouse-Lautrec in John Huston's fictional 1952 biopic Moulin Rouge, (for which he received another Academy Award nomination), the Turkish Bey in Lawrence of Arabia (1962), Herod Antipas in The Greatest Story Ever Told (1965), a budding Nazi in Ship of Fools, a pompous professor in Woody Allen's A Midsummer Night's Sex Comedy (1982) and Shaddam Corrino IV in Dune in 1984.

On stage, he played Miguel de Cervantes and his fictional creation Don Quixote in the hit musical Man of La Mancha, having taken over the role from Richard Kiley in 1967, and hesubsequently went on tour with it in the first national company of the show. In addition, in 1952, he won a Tony Award for directing three plays (The Shrike, Stalag 17, The Fourposter), in the same season, and earned another for his performance in The Shrike.

While not usually known for regular roles in TV series, had a recurring role as Julia Duffy's WASPy father on the long-running television series, "Newhart" in the 1980s. He also had a recurring role as elegant and flamboyant attorney Reuben Marino on the soap opera "Another World" in the early 1980s. He narrated the very first episode of the popular 1964 sitcom "Bewitched," in mock documentary style. He also provided the voice of the evil Ben Haramed on the 1968 Rankin/Bass Christmas TV special "The Little Drummer Boy."

He had a decade-long first marriage to famed actress and acting teacher Uta Hagen (1938–1948), with whom he had a daughter, Leticia ("Lettie") Ferrer. His second wife was dancer/actress Phyllis Hill (1948–1953). His third marriage was to the singer Rosemary Clooney, actor George Clooney's aunt. The couple had five children: actor Miguel José (born 1955); María Providencia (born 1956); Gabriel (born 1957), Monsita (born 1958) and actor Rafael (born 1960). He and Clooney married in 1953, divorced in 1961, and remarried in 1964, only to divorce again three years later. His last marriage was to Stella Magee, whom he had met in the late sixties.

He was inducted into the American Theatre Hall of Fame in 1981. In 1985, he was awarded the National Medal of Arts. He passed away on January 26, 1992 in Coral Gables, Florida, U.S., a few weeks after his 80th birthday, following a brief battle with colon cancer. He was interred in Santa María Magdalena de Pazzis Cemetery in Old San Juan in his native Puerto Rico.

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In the film Cyrano de Bergerac

Appearing on the television program "What's My Line?"

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Was NBC’s “The Event” A Major Casting Faux Pas? Check Out The Opposing Views.

NBC’s upcoming drama series, "The Event," stars African American actor Blair Underwood who plays Cuban American U.S. President Elías Martínez. Should a Latino actor been cast in the role? Or is it an example of creative, nontraditional casting. Check out the article by Elia Esparza from Latin Heat by clicking here.

Has Spanish language TV violated its trust to maintain American Latino cultural identity?

Check out this article written by Dr. Al Carlos Hernández entitled "Blonde, Blue-Eyed Euro-Cute Latinos on Spanish TV" from Latin Heat by clicking here.

HOLA Member Bochinche

Bochinche refers to "gossip." In this sense, we use it to mention HOLA members who are getting acting and performance gigs.

Rita Moreno, Fran Drescher, John Michael Higgins, Tichina Arnold and Valente Rodríguez will star in the new TV Land sitcom "Happily Divorced." Episodes will start airing in June.

Nilo Cruz is developing his Pulitzer Prize-winning play Anna in the Tropics to become a movie. Producer/director Lee Daniels (Oscar-nominated for the film Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire) is attached to the project.

Fernando Gamarra, left, booked an on-camera industrial for Laureate Education thanks to an HOLA casting referral.

Lucio Fernández's latest music video "Sueño Hermoso" off his latest CD Enamorado has been released. You can see it by clicking here. His album is available here on iTunes.

If you are an HOLA member and want to submit a bochinche item, send us an e-mail at If you are not an HOLA member, why not join?

Unprecedented Number of Latinos Cast During 2011 Pilot Season

An unprecedented number of Latinos cast during the 2011 pilot season by the major networks (ABC and Fox led the networks with nine each). Find out more by reading Bel Hernández's article in Latin Heat by clicking here.

New milestone: 1 in 6 U.S. residents is Hispanic

New milestone: According to the U.S. Census, 1 in 6 US residents is Hispanic. Find out more by clicking here.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011


Check out this great review of John Leguizamo's latest solo show Ghetto Klown (directed by Fisher Stevens) in The New York Times by clicking here.

Betcha Didn't Know...?

Some of the most notable names from the dawn of film and television are of Latino descent. Here are some of them.

In this edition, some Latinos who became known in the 1970s and 1980s in film and television.

Jimmy Smits (1955- ) was born in Brooklyn, New York, USA to a Dutch-Guyanese father and a Puerto Rican mother. He is perhaps best known for his roles as attorney Victor Sifuentes on the 1980s legal drama "L.A. Law," as NYPD Detective Bobby Simone (a non-Latino role) on the 1990s police drama "NYPD Blue," as U.S. Congressman (and later President of the United States) Matt Santos on "The West Wing." He is also notable for his portrayal of Bail Organa in the Star Wars prequel trilogy, and as Miguel Prado in "Dexter." In addition, he was Sonny Crockett's original partner in the television series "Miami Vice" (his character died in the pilot episode which made way for new partner Ricardo Tubbs, played by Philip Michael Thomas) and Conky Repairman on "Pee-Wee's Playhouse." Film credits include The Believers, My Family/Mi Familia, Running Scared and Lackawanna Blues. A noted stage actor, this Brooklyn College alum most recently played Orsino in Shakespeare's Twelfth Night at Central Park's Delacorte Theater for the New York Shakespeare Festival/Public Theater and replaced Jeff Daniels in God of Carnage on Broadway.

Antonio Fargas (1946- ) was born in New York, New York, USA to a Puerto Rican father and a Afro-Trinidadian mother. He is most famous famous for his roles in 1970s blaxpoitation movies, as well as his portrayal of Huggy Bear in the 1970s TV series "Starsky and Hutch." His film credits include Foxy Brown, I'm Gonna Git You Sucka (which hilariously spoofs his blaxpoitation past) and Don't Be A Menace.... In addition to "Starsky and Hutch," his TV credits include "All My Children," "Living Single," "Lie To Me" and a regular role on "Everybody Hates Chris." The Argentine band Babasónicos released a song in their 1998 B-sides album Vórtice Marxista called "Antonio Fargas". The song's chorus repeats the phrase "Antonio Fargas es Huggy Bear," and is meant to be homage to him.

Freddie Prinze (1954-1977) was born Frederick Karl Pruetzel to a German father and a Puerto Rican mother in New York, New York, USA. An actor and stand-up comedian, he was known as the star of the 1970s television series "Chico and the Man." While half-German, for comedic purposes he often said he was half-Hungarian, so that he could call himself a "Hungarican." For the sake of his budding comedic career, he changed his surname to "Prinze", which he chose because, according to his friend David Brenner, he originally wanted to be known as the King of comedy, but famed comedian Alan King already had that last name, so he would be the Prince of comedy instead. In December 1973, his biggest break came with an appearance on "The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson." He was the first young comedian to be asked to have a sit-down chat with the host on his first appearance. From 1974 to 1977, he starred as Francisco "Chico" Rodríguez in the TV series "Chico and the Man" with Jack Albertson. The show was an instant hit and popularized Chico's catchphrase "Looking good!" While suffering from depression, he shot himself in the head, an act which was later ruled an accident. (He had a history of playing with guns, faking suicide attempts to frighten his friends for his amusement.) He left behind a wife and son and passed away at the tender age of 22. Decades later, received a star on the Hollywood Walk Of Fame. Looking good, indeed.

Tony Orlando (1944- ) was born Michael Anthony Orlando Cassavitis to a Greek father and a Puerto Rican mother in New York, New York, USA. A singer and sometime actor, he is best known for performing with the group Dawn (known collectively as Tony Orlando and Dawn in the 1970s. His musical career started with the doo-wop group The Five Gents. His first success came when he recorded the hits "Bless You" and "Halfway To Paradise" in 1961. In 1969 he recorded with the group Wind and had a #28 hit that year with "Make Believe." After becoming general manager at Columbia Records, he was tempted back to a recording career when he was asked to record a demo record of the song "Candida." The label liked the demo so much that his version was released, under the band name Dawn (the middle name of the daughter of Jay Siegal, of The Tokens). After he discovered that there were six touring groups using that name, Dawn became Dawn featuring Tony Orlando (which later changed to Tony Orlando and Dawn). Joining him in Dawn were Telma Hopkins and Joyce Vincent Wilson, and the trio scored a string of #1 hits with "Tie A Yellow Ribbon Round the Ole Oak Tree," "Knock Three Times" and "He Don't Love You (Like I Love You)." With Dawn, he had a highly-rated weekly variety series "Tony Orlando and Dawn," which ran for from 1974 to 1976. In 1980, the nation adopted the symbol of the yellow ribbon during the Iran hostage crisis. The yellow ribbon idea came from Orlando's hit "Tie A Yellow Ribbon." It has since become an international symbol of hope and homecoming. He continues to tour the country to sold out concerts and he has also been a guest host of the Jerry Lewis Muscular Dystrophy Labor Day Telethon for many years.

Georg Stanford Brown (1943- ) was born in Havana, Cuba. An actor and director, he is perhaps best known as one of the stars of the police television series "The Rookies" (1972-1976), where he played Officer Terry Webster. During the 1960s, he had a variety of roles in films, including The Comedians, Bullitt and Wild in the Sky. On television, he played Tom Harvey (son of Chicken George, great grandson of Kunta Kinte, and great grandfather of Alex Haley) in the 1977 television miniseries Roots, and 1979's Roots: The Next Generation. In 1980, he starred in the highly successful Stir Crazy opposite Gene Wilder and Richard Pryor. He then went on to a supporting role in yet another miniseries North & South in 1985 as Grady. He also directed several second-season episodes of the television series "Hill Street Blues," for which he was nominated for two Emmy Awards. He won the Emmy in 1986 for directing an episode of "Cagney and Lacey," starring his then-wife Tyne Daly. More recently, he had a recurring role on the FX drama series "Nip/Tuck." He and Daly were married for 24 years, from 1966 to 1990, and have three daughters.

• Wanna see other editions of "Betcha Didn't Know...?" Click here.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

HOLA Member Bochinche

Bochinche refers to "gossip." In this sense, we use it to mention HOLA members who are getting acting and performance gigs.

Ziad Tayeh will be acting in the play Destination: Perservence (written by Cristhian Andrews and directed by Bob Teague) at the Producers' Club Theatres in the theater district of midtown Manhattan. He will follow this up with a role in Raging Love (written by Charlotte Cox and directed by Flor Bromley) at the Langston Hughes Branch of the New York public Library in the Corona section of Queens. He most previously wrapped up a role in Vietnam: The Musical at Montclair State University in Montclair, New Jersey.

Raoul Bretón is set to star in the World View production of Cayendo con Victoriano. Written by Luis Enrique G. Ortiz Monasterio and directed by Luis Martín, the play also features Alfredo Huereca, Ana Verónica Muñoz, Bill Blechingberg and Ricardo J. Salazar in the cast and will take place in the Roy Arias Theater Center in the theater district of midtown Manhattan.

Alberto Bonilla is directing a production of Anton Chekhov's The Three Sisters, slated for a March run at the Secret Theatre located in the Long Island City section of Queens.

Jeffrey Hernández just finished a run of the Harvey Schmidt/Tom Jones musical The Fantasticks. Directed by Tristan Pope (with musical direction by Elizabeth Gerbi), the production took place at Bedford Community Theater in Bedford Hills, New York.

If you are an HOLA member and want to submit a bochinche item, send us an e-mail at If you are not an HOLA member, why not join?

Monday, March 21, 2011

From The Washington Post: Article on Nontraditional Casting in the Theater World

Check out this article in The Washington Post written by Nelson Pressley regarding a revival of nontraditional casting in the theater world.

Friday, March 18, 2011

HOLA Member Bochinche

Bochinche refers to "gossip." In this sense, we use it to mention HOLA members who are getting acting and performance gigs.

Mike Smith Rivera, left, has become the spokesperson for Church's Chicken. To date, he has shot 15 commercials (in English and Spanish) and recorded 20 radio spots for the brand. He was initially requested to audition for the first spot after the casting director found him on the HOLA talent directory. You can see all the spots by clicking here.

Frank Craven e-mailed us to let us know of a very interesting thing that happened to him. While working on the set of the HBO series "Boardwalk Empire," he came across a movie poster being used as part of a set. The poster was for the 1941 movie The Richest Man In Town coincidentally starring his grandfather, also named Frank Craven. The current Craven's great-grandfather, John T. Craven, acted with Joseph Jefferson and Edwin Booth and his grandfather originated the role of the Stage Manager in the Broadway production of Thornton Wilder's Our Town. Also in that production was the current Craven's father (the former Craven's son), John Craven, playing the role of George Gibbs. You can see both Frank Cravens in the photo on the right.

The City College of New York (CCNY) Conference in Immigration and Education is presenting a workshop presentation of Barbara Bennion's play Flowers Behind The Mountain. Directed by Staci Swedeen, it is scheduled for a late March run and will be presented at CCNY's Aronow Theater in the Hamilton Heights area of Manhattan. The production features J.W. Cortés, Luis Galli, Cristina Rodríguez, Juan Vélez and Teresa Yenque in the cast.

Grupo Teatral TEBA is presenting the world premiere of a never before produced work by Federico García Lorca called Cristo, poema dramático. Directed by Héctor Luis Rivera, the production will feature Kathy Tejada, Emely Grisanti, Edison Carrera, Raúl Rivera, Edward Azcorra, Karina Blanco and Alejandro Myerstone in the cast and be presented for a late March run in the Comisionado de Cultura Dominicano in the Washington Heights section of Manhattan.

Patricia Becker, Emma Ramos, Bernardo Cubría and Arlene Chico-Lugo are starring in the production of You Are Now The Owner of This Suitcase. Conceived and directed by Ari Laura Kreith, the Theatre 167 production was written by Mando Alvarado, Jenny Lyn Bader, Barbara Cassidy, Les Hunter, Joy Tomasko, Gary Winter and Stefanie Zadravec (with Angie Balsamo serving as dramaturg) and scheduled for a March and April run in Public School 69 in the Jackson Heights area of Queens. (Note: The name of the production company, Theatre 167, refers to the number of languages spoken in the historic neighborhood of Jackson Heights.)

If you are an HOLA member and want to submit a bochinche item, send us an e-mail at If you are not an HOLA member, why not join?

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

HOLA Member Bochinche

Bochinche refers to "gossip." In this sense, we use it to mention HOLA members who are getting acting and performance gigs.

Antonio García, Jr., left, will appear in the workshop production of Mira Gibson's play A Diamond in the House of Thieves as part of the WorkShop Theater's Sunday at Six reading series. Initiated by Mike Smith Rivera, the presentation will take place in late March at the WorkShop Theater's Jewel Box Theater in midtown Manhattan. He nabbed the role after submitting his headshot and resume after reading the daily e-mail casting notices and announcements HOLA sends to its members.

Alfonso Ramírez, right, booked a role in the Carlos Lacámara play Nowhere on the Border through an HOLA referral. Directed by Victoria Linchong and also featuring Bernardo Cubría, Casandra Kate Escobar, Jay Patterson, Frank Rodríguez and Jorge Rubio in the cast. The production is scheduled for a mid-March presentation at Center Stage, in Manhattan's Flatiron District.

Ángel Gil Orrios and Thalía Spanish Theatre (in association with Lotus Music and Dance and Andrea Del Conte Danza España will present Flamenco & Indian Music & Dance. This spectacle that fuses Spanish and Indian folkloric music and dance will be presented for an April run at Thalía eponymous theater located in Sunnyside, Queens.

If you are an HOLA member and want to submit a bochinche item, send us an e-mail at If you are not an HOLA member, why not join?

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

HOLA Legends: Charo

María del Rosario Pilar Martínez Molina Gutiérrez de los Perales Santa Ana Romanguera y de la Hinojosa de Rasten (January 15, 1951?- ), listed elsewhere as María Rosario Pilar Martínez Molina Baeza, better known as Charo, is a actress, comedienne, and flamenco guitarist, best known for her flamboyant stage presence, her provocative outfits, and her trademark phrase ("cuchi cuchi").

Born in Murcia, Spain, her father was a lawyer who reportedly fled to Casblanca, Morocco during Francisco Franco's dictatorship while her homemaker mother stayed behind in Murcia raising their children. She studied classical and flamenco guitar while residing in Murcia, and can claim classical guitar legend Andrés Segovia as her guitar teacher. He once spoke of his pupil in an interview, and remembered giving her career advice. "Stop saying 'cuchi cuchi' so much, Charo! Be serious!" She took guitar lessons from him and other teachers from the age of nine on.

When she was quite young, she was "discovered" by famous bandleader Xavier Cugat, whom she later wed on August 7, 1966. Cugat was 66 and had already been married numerous times. In a February 2005 interview with the Los Angeles-based Spanish-language newspaper La Opinión, she claimed that her marriage to Cugat had been merely a "business contract," a way for him to legally bring her over to the United States, where he was based. For her first years in the U.S., she lived on West 257th Street in the Bronx, New York City with her mother and aunt, and was regularly featured in shows with Cugat's orchestra in New York and Las Vegas, as well as in overseas engagements in Latin America and Europe.

Her first US TV appearance was on "The Today Show" in the mid-1960s. She later appeared on "Laugh-In" in 1968. She would appear on short chatfests of a few minutes near the end of the show with hosts Dan Rowan and Dick Martin. Her then-almost complete lack of fluency in the English language was played as a comic focus, and she would have the two hosts laughing at her mangled English. This is also the time that the "cuchi cuchi' line passed into the public arena.

She was headlining Vegas shows by 1971, and reportedly being paid as much as Frank Sinatra, Ray Charles or Dean Martin. In 1977, she became a naturalized citizen of the United States; that same year, she filed for divorce from Cugat, a petition that was granted April 14, 1978. On August 11, 1978, she married her second husband, Kjell Rasten, a producer, who became his wife's manager, and the couple has one child, a son, Shel Rasten (born 1982). Throughout the 1970s, she was a highly visible personality, appearing eight times on "The Love Boat," as well as on variety and talk shows such as "Donny & Marie," "Tony Orlando and Dawn," "The Captain and Tennille," "The John Davidson Show" and "The Mike Douglas Show" (which she once co-hosted).

For much of the late 1980s and 1990s, she had limited visibility as she moved to Hawaii, and opened and performed at her own dinner theater while she and Rasten raised their son. Because of the large number of Japanese immigrants to the island state, she learned to speak Japanese. In the 2000s, she returned to television in commercials, as well as guest appearances on "Hollywood Squares," a season-three stint on the series "The Surreal Life," as guest appearances on the "That '70s Show," "Viva Hollywood" and "RuPaul's Drag Race" as well as appearances on VH1's "I Love the '70s" retrospectives and numerous other talk shows.

She now has a regular touring show in addition to appearances in Branson, Missouri and Las Vegas. She has recorded several albums of music since 1977. Her most recent single, "Sexy Sexy" was released in late 2010. She has often humorously expressed that "Cuchi cuchi has taken me straight to the bank."

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Playing "Malagueña" on guitar on "The Martha Stewart Show"

On "The Carol Burnett Show"

Interview on "American Latino"

Telling an audience the name on her passport

Monday, March 14, 2011

Betcha Didn't Know...?

Some of the most notable names from the dawn of film and television are of Latino descent. Here are some of them.

In this edition, some Latinas who became known in the 1970s and 1980s in film and television.

Lynda Carter (1951- ) was born Lynda Jean Córdoba Carter (or Lynda Jean Carter Córdoba al estilo latino) in Phoenix, Arizona, USA to an Irish-American father and a Mexican mother. An actress and singer, she became Miss World USA, played Rita Hayworth in a TV movie, played Mama Morton in the West End production of the musical Chicago, had her second jazz album reach #10 on the Billboard Jazz Albums chart (in 2009) and continues to sell out cabaret shows around the country. Most people know her for playing the title role in the television series "The New Adventures of Wonder Woman." ¡Que maravilla!

Catherine Bach (1954- ) was born Catherine Bachman Kucera (al estilo latino) in Cleveland, Ohio, USA to a father of German ancestry and a Mexican-American mother. She auditioned for a role that according to TV producers was supposed to "look like Dolly Parton." Her talent and charisma earned her the gig in spite of not looking like Dolly Parton. She disagreed with the producers over her original costume for her character (a white turtleneck, poodle skirt and go-go boots), so she offered her alternative: a homemade T-shirt, a pair of unraveled denim shorts and high heels. And just like that, a new look was created. The pair of short shorts were named after her character on the show. And the phenomenon of Daisy Duke on "The Dukes of Hazzard" (and "Daisy Dukes" shorts) was born.

Raquel Welch (1940- ) was born Jo-Raquel Tejada Hall (al estilo latino) to a Bolivian-Spanish father and a mother of English descent in Chicago, Illinois, USA. She wanted to be a performer her entire life, and when told her body wasn't "proper" for ballet, opted for modeling, acting and singing. Early films include Fantastic Voyage, Bandolero! and One Million Years B.C., the last of which made her a star of epic proportions. Other films include Myra Breckenridge, 100 Rifles, The Three Musketeers and Legally Blonde. Her role in the TV movie "Right to Die," where she played a woman dying from Lou Gehrig's disease earned her critical acclaim. She followed this up with roles in the Broadway musicals Woman of the Year and Victor/Victoria as well as a role in the TV series "American Family." Also a businesswoman, she has created fitness videos/DVDs, a signature line of wigs and a jewelry and skincare line.

Ana Alicia (1956- ), sometimes styled as Ana-Alicia, was born Ana Alicia Ortiz in Ciudad de México, Distrito Federal, México. She is best known for her role as scheming heiress Melissa Agretti on the long-running primetime soap opera "Falcon Crest." Other TV credits include roles on "Ryan's Hope" (where she played Alicia Nieves for 15 months), "Battlestar Galactica" and "Buck Rogers in the 25th Century." On "Falcon Crest," she become the series' "love to hate" character and a firm fan favorite, as a worthy rival for the show's arch-villainess Angela Channing (played by Jane Wyman). Film credits include Halloween II and Romero (the latter starring Raúl Juliá).

• Wanna see other editions of "Betcha Didn't Know...?" Click here.

This Isn't Your Abuela's Latino Community

Check out this article written by Hernán López about the growing Hipanic Population in the United States.

When Celia Met Patti

Did you know that Queen of Salsa (and La Guarachera de Cuba) Celia Cruz once performed with the R&B icon Patti LaBelle? It happened at the 1998 Alma Awards. Take a look.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

HOLA Member Bochinche

Bochinche refers to "gossip." In this sense, we use it to mention HOLA members who are getting acting and performance gigs.

Kamar de los Reyes and Elvis Nolasco headline the cast of Pedro Antonio García's play Firehouse (directed by Bryan Rasmussen), now playing through the end of April at the Whitefire Theatre in Sherman Oaks, California.

R.Evolución Latina is presenting its annual Choreographers Festival at the Manhattan Movement & Arts Center in the West Side of Manhattan at the end of March. Choreographers showcasing their work include Luis Salgado and Gabriela García, among others. Dancers include Mónica Delgado, Freia Canals and Milteri Tucker.

Francisco Reyes continues his successful run in Juan Mayorga's play Way To Heaven (Himmelweg). With a translation by David Johnston and direction by Matthew Earnest, the production is taking place in Repertorio Español in the Rose Hill section of Manhattan.

Fernando Gamarra
's debut feature Blackthorn (written by Miguel Barros and directed by Mateo Gil) has been selected for and will screen at the famed Tribeca Film Festival in New York.

Frank Craven has released a CD of music entitled Rosey & Blue Tunes For Sweet & Sour Hearts/Canciones alegres y tristes para corazones agri-dulces, which is available via CD Baby.

If you are an HOLA member and want to submit a bochinche item, send us an e-mail at If you are not an HOLA member, why not join?

Monday, March 7, 2011

What Awards and Honors Have Rita Moreno Won In Her Career?

Rita Moreno
has won the Academy Award, the Tony, the Grammy and two Emmy Awards.

Below are some videoclips of some of her acceptance speeches.

The 1961 Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for West Side Story

CLICK HERE (unable to embed the video into the blog)

The 1975 Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Play for The Ritz

The 1978 Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series for "The Rockford Files" (she also won the 1977 Primetime Emmy Award for Individual Performance in a Variety or Music Program for her guest appearance on "The Muppet Show"-- she was unable to attend the ceremony that year)

In addition, she has won the following awards.
  • Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress - West Side Story (1961)
  • "The Joseph Jefferson Award" Best Chicago Theatre Actress (1968)
  • Grammy Award - The Electric Company Album (1972)
  • Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Play - The Ritz (1975)
  • "The Golden Apple" Cue Magazine Award
  • Library of Congress Living Legends Award (2000)
  • Rita Moreno HOLA Award for Excellence named in her honor by the Hispanic Organization of Latin Actors (2000)
  • The Sarah Siddons Award for her portrayal of Olive Madison in the female version of The Odd Couple
  • Special Recognition Award from the International Latin Music Hall of Fame (2001)
  • Presidential Medal of Freedom from President George W. Bush (2004)
  • Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 7083 Hollywood Boulevard
  • Induction into California Hall of Fame (located at The California Museum for History, Women and the Arts) from California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and First Lady Maria Shriver (2007)
  • National Medal of Arts from President Barack Obama (2009)
  • Hispanic Organization of Latin Actors (HOLA) Lifetime Achievement Award (2010).

Johnny Depp as Pancho Villa? Not so fast, says Johnny.

Click here to check out the article (written by Rubén Navarrette for regarding Hollwood's Latino snub.

HOLA Member Bochinche

Bochinche refers to "gossip." In this sense, we use it to mention HOLA members who are getting acting and performance gigs.

Dennis Brito, pictured at left, booked an episode of "Caso Cerrado" (Telemundo) after the casting director spotted his headshot in the HOLA online talent directory.

Gilbert Cruz booked an AT&T commercial.

Lisann V. booked a commercial for The Source magazine.

José Yenque just wrapped up filming the feature film The Clinic, where he stars opposite Brooke Burns and Michael Stults. He plays Federal Chief of Police Carlos Rodríguez in the film (written and directed by Andrew C. Erin). He also completed work on the features Lost Revolution (written and directed by Michael Narváez and starring Oscar winner Melissa Leo, Roger Guenveur Smith and Jaime Tirelli) and Freeloaders (directed by Dan Rosen and starring Jane Seymour, Dave Foley and Clifton Collins, Jr.).

Yanelba Ferreira appeared in the music videos "Do It Dirty" (performer: Raquel Reed featuring Blam), "Bomba Es" (performer: Las 7pm Brothers) and "Get Crazy" (performer: Amrit/directed by Cyril Mahé). In addition, she nabbed a supporting role in the feature film Keep The Party Going (directed by Hakim Wray).

Jaime Robert Carrillo just wrapped up work in Luis Alfaro's Oedipus El Rey. Directed by Michael John Garcés, the production took place at the Woolly Mammoth Theater in Washington, D.C. and also featured Mando Alvarado, David Anzuelo, Romi Dias, Gerard Ender, Andrés Munar and José Joaquín Pérez in the cast.

If you are an HOLA member and want to submit a bochinche item, send us an e-mail at If you are not an HOLA member, why not join?

Friday, March 4, 2011

Rita Moreno Habla video, courtesy of HBO Latino

HOLA Member Bochinche

Bochinche refers to "gossip." In this sense, we use it to mention HOLA members who are getting acting and performance gigs.

Éric-Dominique Pérez and Emmanuelle Bordas, shown at right, notified us that they booked an episode of "Caso Cerrado" (Telemundo) after the casting director spotted their headshots in the HOLA online talent directory.

Elizabeth Rivera de García will be performing her spoken word poetry with a jazz band in the event entitled Lady II. Presented by Rome Neal's Pudding Jazz, the event is set to take place in March at the famed Nuyorican Poets' Café in Manhattan's Loísaida neighborhood. For more information, click here.

Jean-Marc Berne will be a guest on "The Sissy Gamache Show" (Manhattan Neighborhood Network). For more information, click here.

Mauricio Alexander was recently nabbed a principal role in a PSA for the National Council of La Raza's "Vote for Respect" campaign. In addition, he appeared in the miniseries "The Captive" (Sundance Channel) and played Odysseus in the Internationalists' production of Homer's The Odyssey (directed by Tamilla Woodard and presented at the LaGuardia Performing Arts Center in the Long Island City area of Queens). Finally, he booked a recurring role on the web series "East Willy-B" (written and directed by Yamin Segal and also starring Danny Hoch, Julia Ahumada Grob, April Lee Hernández, Raúl Castillo and Caridad De La Luz).

If you are an HOLA member and want to submit a bochinche item, send us an e-mail at If you are not an HOLA member, why not join?