Friday, August 5, 2011

Report on the 2011 HOLA Awards Announcement Ceremony

The recipients of the 2011 HOLA Awards were announced in a press conference and ceremony on Thursday, August 4, 2011 at Teatro SEA on the first floor of the Clemente Soto Vélez Cultural and Educational Center (home to HOLA) in Manhattan's Loísaida neighborhood.

HOLA Associate Director A.B. Lugo served as the master of ceremonies. In addition, the theater awardees were announced by HOLA Administrative Assistant Soledad del Río, HOLA member Modesto Lacén, and actors Dalia Davi and Ismael Cruz Córdova.

There were plenty of surprises, including the fact that Lacén, Davi and Cruz Córdova all picked up award recognition. None of them knew they were winning until their names were mentioned by another announcer. Lacén is set to pick up an award for being in the ensemble of the off-Broadway production La Barbería (written by David Maldonado and Arí Maniel Cruz and directed by Waddys Jáquez and presented at New World Stages). Davi will also pick up an award for being in the ensemble of the Repertorio Español production En el tiempo de las mariposas (written by Caridad Svich, based on the novel by Julia Álvarez and directed by José Zayas). Cruz Córdova will receive an award for Outstanding Performance by a Featured Male Actor for his role in the Teatro LATEA production of La luz de un cigarrillo (written and directed by Marco Antonio Rodríguez, who will also receive an award for playwriting). A full list of the honorees and awardees can be seen here.

Several of the awardees were in attendance and all were surprised. While Davi and Arisleyda Lombert (the latter an Outstanding Achievement by a Featured Female Actor awardee) were stunned by their names being read, Susanna Guzmán (an Outstanding Achievement by a Female Actor awardee) said later that it was "weird" to see her name and photo on the backdrop as her name was uttered as an awardee. Inma Heredia (an Outstanding Solo Performance awardee) had the most poignant reaction-- she instantly sat straight up, gasped, her hands instinctively going to her face, where she covered her face in her hands as the room burst in applause. The largest applause, however, was reserved for Teresa Yenque, who will receive a Special Recognition Award for excellence in her over 40 years of theater, film and television.

Along with Soledad del Río, HOLA was assisted during the ceremony by Teatro SEA's Technical Director Daniel D'Ambrosi, HOLA Development and Gala Consultant María F. Nieto, HOLA Board President Manolo García Oliva, HOLA Executive Director Manny Alfaro and HOLA volunteers Carolina Miguel and Dulcelina Frías.

The Twelfth Annual HOLA Awards will take place on Monday, October 17, 2011 at 6:30pm at The Battery Gardens in New York's scenic Battery Park (opposite 17 State Street) located at the southern tip of Manhattan Island. Individual tickets are $150 and can be purchased in advance by calling (212) 253-1015 or by going to Table sponsorships are also available and can be purchased by calling María F. Nieto at 212-253-1015 or by emailing her at

Photos of the event were taken by Anthony Ruiz of ARuiz Photography (click on each to see them bigger). More photos of the event can be seen by clicking here.

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