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HOLA Awards 2002 - Bios


Wanda Arriaga has extensive professional theatre experience, including fifteen lead roles with regional California and New York theatres, and Off-Broadway, including the Joseph Papp Public Theatre and Repertorio Español. She is multilingual in English, Spanish, French, Italian and Portuguese. She received the 2000 HOLA Excellence Award for her work in Puerto Rico ¡Fua!, the 2000 ACE Award for Best Actress for ¡Qué felices son Las Barbies!, and the 1998 Best Actress ACE Award for her role in Los Soles Truncos produced by Teatro Círculo. Ms. Arriaga's scholarly accomplishments contribute greatly to her depth of theatre experience. She holds a Master’s degree in Acting from the University of California, San Diego, and received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Humanities (magna cum laude) from the University of Puerto Rico. Currently, she is an adjunct lecturer in Spanish Literature at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. Ms. Arriaga was a founder of Teatro Círculo in 1994 and has served as its marketing director since its inception.

Yanko Bakulic studied performing arts in Santiago de Chile. He performed in Martin Sherman’s Bent (1995), The Little Prince, based on the story by Antoine de Saint-Exupery (1996), Medieval Tales (1997) and Beauty and the Beast (1998). His credits as a stage designer includes Beauty and the Beast, The Little Prince and El truco del anillo. In his native Chile, Mr. Bakulic has worked in several films,TV shows and in the soap opera “Eclipse de Lana.”

Ricardo Barber has been a leading actor for the past 35 years in Cuba, Spain, and New York City. Born in Cuba and a member of Repertorio Español since 1981, he has starred in many productions including La gringa, Parece blanca, El cano, Yerma and Blood Wedding, among others. He has won the ACE Best Actor award for Y se armó la mojiganga (1995), Revoltillo (1989) and Prohibido suicidarse en primavera (1987).

Germán Baruffi began performing in musical theater productions at Estudios de Comedias Musicales in his native city of Rosario, Argentina. He is a member of IATI where he is in charge in developing promotional strategies. For IATI, Mr. Baruffi has performed in the plays La luna me está mirando, and ¡A contar cuentos...! You can also see him in The Song of the Simple Truth/El canto de Julia de Burgos. He also performed in the short film titled The Rage.

Benjamin Bratt, an actor whose striking presence on screen is balanced by a sure hand with a variety of material, delivers a breakthrough performance in Miramax Films' current "Pinero." Directed by Leon Ichaso ("Bitter Sugar," "Sugar Hill") and produced by GreeneStreet Films, "Pinero" traces the life of Latino artist Miguel Pinero, the controversial New York figure whose urban poetry is recognized as a precursor to rap and hip-hop. "Observing the world through hooded snake eyes in a fog of cigarette smoke, jabbing the air as he raps out poetry in a sly staccato drawl, Benjamin Bratt resurrects the spirit of the playwright, poet and actor Miguel Pinero with the kind of thrilling brio that Dustin Hoffman brought to his screen portrayal of Lenny Bruce 27 years ago," writes Stephen Holden in The New York Times. "It is a career-defining performance that could catapult the 37-year-old actor...into the kinds of juicy antiheroic parts once gobbled up by Mr. Hoffman and Robert De Niro." Ichaso cast Bratt in "Pinero" after seeing his performance as a streetwise muralist in brother Peter Bratt's "Follow Me Home," (1997), featuring Alfre Woodard.

Bratt next appears in Academy Award-winning screenwriter Stephen Gaghan's ("Traffic") directorial debut, "Abandon." He stars opposite Katie Holmes as a detective who aids a college student in her search for a missing boyfriend. Produced by Linda and Ed Zwick for Paramount Pictures, the thriller opens later this year. In April, Bratt begins filming "The Great Raid" for director John Dahl ("Rounders," 'The Last Seduction"). Based on a true story, Bratt stars as Henry Mucci, an army ranger colonel chosen to lead a POW camp invasion in the last days of World War II. Marty Katz will produce "The Great Raid" for Miramax Films. Bratt's screen credits also include Stephen Soderbergh's "Traffic," "Miss Congeniality" opposite Sandra Bullock, "Red Planet" with Val Kilmer and Carrie-Anne Moss, John Schlesinger's "The Next Best Thing," "The River Wild" with Meryl Streep and Kevin Bacon, Phillip Noyce's "Clear And Present Danger," starring Harrison Ford, 'Demolition Man" with Sylvester Stallone and Wesley Snipes, Taylor Hackford's "Bound by Honor," "Bright Angel" co-starring Lili Taylor and Dermot Mulroney, and "One Good Cop" with Michael Keaton.

Bratt established himself on Dick Wolf's critically acclaimed drama "Law & Order" for NBC. A series regular for four seasons, he received an Emmy Award nomination for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series for his portrayal of Detective Reynaldo Curtis in 1999. In 1998 and 1999, the cast garnered Screen Actors Guild nominations for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series. On television, Bratt starred in "Exiled," the "Law & Order" telefilm, Showtime's "Woman Undone" with Randy Quaid and Mary McDonnell, the NBC mini-series, "James A. Michener's Texas," "Shadowhunter" with Scott Glenn, "After the Storm," based on a story by Earnest Hemingway, and "Chains of Gold" with John Travolta. Bratt studied at the University of California at Santa Barbara and the American Conservatory Theater (ACT) in San Francisco.

René Buch was founder and director of Pro Arte de Oriente’s Theatre Department, as well as founder of Havana’s Acción Teatral de Autores (ATA). Through the ATA, he made possible the staging of plays by aspiring Cuban playwrights. He holds a degree in law from Havana University. In 1948, he came to the United States and enrolled at the Yale Drama School. While completing his MFA degree, he taught both Spanish and Spanish literature at Yale. After moving to New York, he worked for the Radio and Television Department of the United Nations, where he became Editor of the United Nations Journal (Spanish Edition). Later, he served as Associate Editor at Visión magazine, writing on music, theatre, film, art and literature. In 1963, he moved to The Latin American Times, where he served as editor for the arts, and later with Reader’s Digest as a book editor in Mexico City. Mr. Buch directed La dama duende at the Greenwich Mews Theatre in 1968, produced by Las Artes-- Frances Drucker and Gilberto Zaldívar. The success of the production gave birth to Repertorio Español. As Artistic Director of Repertorio Español, Buch has directed many plays - among them: La Celestina, Las Pericas, Romeo and Juliet, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, The Glass Menagerie, Life is a Dream, Secret Injury/Secret Revenge, Fuente ovejuna, El burlador De Sevilla, Acto cultural, El día que me quieres, nearly the entire García Lorca canon, and many more. His work with a specially chosen company of actors has developed an outstanding ensemble, which has won critical acclaim throughout the United States, and on its tours to Latin America and Spain. Under his direction, Repertorio Español has presented zarzuelas (Spanish operettas) and anthologies of classical and popular Hispanic music to enthusiastic audiences. In addition to his work at Repertorio Español, Buch has staged operas and directed productions of Shakespeare, Pirandello, Cocteau, Ionèsco, Beckett, Calderón and García Lorca at regional theatres, including the Milwaukee Repertory, Capital Repertory (Albany, New York), Classic Stage Company, La Compañía de Alburquerque and the Juilliard Drama Center. In 1993, he directed the Uruguayan play Ballad of the Blacksmith (El herrero y la muerte) at The Old Globe in San Diego. As a playwright, Buch has also had his own plays staged; The Hollow Shell was published in Cuba after its premiere at Yale and Del agua de la vida, which received Cuba’s National Theatre Award. Buch has served as a panel member for the National Endowment for the Arts and the New York State Council on the Arts, The 1990 Village Voice OBIE Awards Committee and the Independent Committee on Arts Policy and as a board member of the Theatre Communications Group.

Rodrigo Cameron recently arrived in New York on a Fulbright grant and Volvió Una Noche at Repertorio Español represents his first work in NYC. Previous to that he worked in Buenos Aires where he appeared in several plays: Macbeth (lead role, Teatro La Carbonera), Wedekind’s Lulu (Schwarz, Teatro Municipal San Martín), En los Zaguanes Angeles Muertos and La Pasajera by Alberto Félix Alberto (Teatro del Sur), amongst others. He also worked extensively in English in Argentina with Actors Repertory Theater, playing lead roles in Betrayal (Pinter), Intimate Exchanges (Ayckbourn) and The Fall of the House of Usher (Poe). Film credits include Sólo Gente directed by Roberto Maiocco (Special Mention at the La Habana Film Festival) and Evita.

Susana Crisán received the Argentina's Critics Recognition for her three-year performance in Bertolt Brecht's El preceptor. In the USA, she received the 1992-93 Aplausos Award and the 1999 HOLA Award, both for Excellence in Acting. Most recent appearances include the role of Olimpia in Georges Feydeau's La pulga en la oreja " (directed by Cecill Villar) and two roles in Jardiel Poncela's Cuatro corazones con freno y marcha atrás (directed by Angel Gil Orrios). She acted in the movie Rum and Coke, which played the film festival circuit. As a playwright, Ms. Crisán has obtained awards for three of her plays. Since 1983, she has been writing, producing and directing bilingual plays for children and their families, first for Minor Stage and for the last eight years for Viva Stage. Ms. Crisán is listed in the 1994-95 Who's Who Among Hispanic Americans "by virtue of significant social, civic and professional contributions to American society."

Graciela Daniele left her native Argentina when she was 15 to study classical ballet in Europe. Her first exposure to American musical theater was the movie version of West Side Story, which she saw in Paris. She came to the United States shortly after to study dance, getting work as a Broadway dancer almost immediately. As assistant to legendary choreographer/directors Michael Bennett and Bob Fosse, she performed in the original Broadway productions of Follies and Chicago. She has directed on Broadway, at Lincoln Center, the Public Theater and at regional theaters across the country and earned ten Tony Award nominations and six Drama Desk nominations. Her Broadway credits as a director/choreographer include Annie Get Your Gun, Marie Christine, Once on This Island, Chronicle of a Death Foretold, Doll (with Patti Lupone), and Dangerous Game. She has choreographed such shows as Ragtime (Astaire, Ovation, NAACP and Calloway awards); A New Brain; Promises, Promises; Coco (with Katherine Hepburn); The Goodbye Girl; Zorba (with Anthony Quinn); The Rink (with Liza Minnelli and Chita Rivera); The Mystery of Edwin Drood; The Pirates of Penzance (New York Shakespeare Festival production on Broadway, Los Angeles and London); the motion picture Pirates; and three of Woody Allen's films, including Mighty Aphrodite and Everyone Says I Love You, for which she won the 1996 and 1997 Fosse Awards, respectively. As a project for INTAR, Daniele conceived, co-adapted, choreographed and directed Tango Apasionado. She is the recipient of the 1998 Mr. Abbott Award for Outstanding Achievement by a Director/Choreographer.

Vivian Deangelo studied acting at El Galpón School of Performing Arts in Montevideo, Uruguay. In New York City, she performed with Repertorio Español for 7 years and with almost every other Spanish language theater company in the city. She was the recipient of the ACE Award in 1997 for Best Actress for her performance in Entre tinieblas by Pedro Almodóvar. She is lATl's Artistic Producer and has produced the following plays: Animas de un día claro, Voces de América, Caballero por un día, La luna me está mirando, ¡A contar cuentos...!, Compañía and the dance events De todo un poco and Convite.

Luz Marina Díaz has been teaching, performing and choreographing for over 15 years. In Venezuela, she danced for Taller de Danza de Caracas and Danza Teatro Abelardo Gameche. She was one of the pioneer teachers in The National Dance School of Venezuela. Ms. Díaz has performed in many festivals such as the American Dance Festival, The International Festival of Theater, The Downtown Festival of Dance in New York and other dance festivals in Bolivia, India, Brazil and Germany. She is a member of IATI. Ms. Díaz is the coordinator of the program lATI-Danza and conducts the dance projects De todo un poco and Convite.

Sully Díaz was born in New York of Puerto Rican parents. She started her career at a very young age as a rnodel for magazines and TV. While studying drama at the University ot Puerto Rico, director Dean Zayas recommended her for a soap opera audition, and she landed the leading role in Telemundo's “Coralito.” Its success transformed Ms. Díaz into a Latin American star with leads in major television shows in Puerto Rico, Argentina and Venezuela for the Univisión and Telemundo networks. She continued her trainlng in New York, where she studied at the Actors Studio, and with Herbert Berghoff and Ann Reinking. Ms. Díaz starred in off-Broadway plays receiving rave reviews. She has appeared in numerous films, including True Believer (with James Woods and Robert Downey Jr.), The Old Man and The Sea (with Anthony Quinn), Gryphon (with Jane Alexander on PBS), Shattered Dreams (with Jack Scalia), Zooman (with Louis Gossett Jr. on Showtime). She has been a guest star in “Law & Order” (ABC), “Ellen” (ABC), “Culture Clash” (Fox) and “Legwork” (CBS). After moving to Los Angeles, Ms. Díaz developed her own standup comedy show and worked in top comedy clubs, such as The Improv, The Laugh Factory and The Comedy Store, among others. Ms. Díaz is also one of the founders of the successful comedy troupe Hot and Spicy Mamitas of Comedy. She returned to Puerto Rico to star in three miniseries, two movies, and a new sitcom for Telemundo. Her successful standup show, Sully's Comedy Divas, was recently presented in Miami, and will continue to tour.

Tony Díaz is a native of Cienfuegos, Cuba. For more than four decades, he has worked for numerous Cuban theater companies and for the Cuban film industry (ICAIC). Mr. Díaz has toured several times to Mexico, Venezuela, Colombia, Portugal and Spain. As a stage designer and director, Mr. Díaz participated in the Festival de Otoño (Madrid, Spain; 1991); the Festival Binacional and the Festival de la Frontera (Venezuela and Colombia, respectively). His most outstanding works as theater director include Muerte en el bosque, Jesús, Amadeus (Compañía Rita Montaner), Chago de guisa (Grupo de Teatro Caribeño), Don Juan Tenorio, Ruandi (Grupo de Arte Popular). Mr. Díaz has received the Mariposa Cultural Award (1999), UNEAC Award (National Organization of Cuban Artists and Writers, 1997), UPEC Award (Cuban Journalists Association, 1997), among others.

Francisco Fuertes started his artistic career in his native Argentina as a young folkloric dancer at age 6 with the Ballet Folklórico de Mendoza. He has performed throughout Argentina, Venezuela, Canada and the United States. In New York, he recently performed in Teatro Thalía’s production of Cuatro corazones con freno y marcha atrás as Dr. Bremón. He has also appeared as Lorenzo in Thalía’sBroadway/La gran vía, Enrique in Celos del aire for which he received an ACE Best Actor nomination, Romo in Molinos de viento, and Carlos in El caso de la señora estupenda. He is an accomplished classical singer and has performed in New York as Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni, in The Merry Widow and in the U.S. premiere of the zarzuela El rey que rabió. He had the pleasure of working with Pablo Zinger in Astor Piazzolla’s Tango operita, María de Buenos Aires at Town Hall. His other New York credits include The Rainmaker, The Lower Depths and Macbeth. Canadian audiences have seen him in roles such as Count Magnus in A Little Night Music, the Scarecrow in The Wizard of Oz, the Leading Player in Pippin, Renfield in Dracula, Matt in The Fantasticks, and Dr. Armstrong in Ten Little Indians. His TV credits include “One Life to Live,” “As the World Turns,” “Search for Tomorrow” and “Ryan’s Hope.” He studied with Sonia Moore and is a graduate of the American Stanislavsky Theatre.

Pablo García Gámez recently performed at the First International Festival of Monologues in Miami with his one-man show Cariaquito Morao. He is a member of IATI and is in charge of the program La Voz de Los Autores. He currently performs in the plays La luna me está mirando and ¡A contar cuentos...!, both of which he also wrote.

Priscilla López starred in the original Broadway production of A Chorus Line when the celebrated musical opened to unanimous raves in 1975. She won an Obie and was nominated for a Tony Award playing Diana Morales, a spunky Puerto Rican chorus girl-wannabe from the Bronx. As the first American-born child of Puerto Rican parents who lived in the Bronx, the role wasn’t a stretch for Lopez. As Morales, she performed the show-stopping "What I Did for Love." The torchy number that brought audiences to their feet went on to become one of the show’s most enduring pop favorites and was the title of Lopez’s recent New York cabaret debut. She won the Tony for Best Featured Actress in a Musical playing the role of Harpo Marx in A Day in Hollywood/A Night in the Ukraine. Her Broadway credits include The Sisters Rosenzweig, Nine the Musical, Pippin, and Company. López appeared off-Broadway last season in the musical revue newyorkers. Her other off-Broadway credits include The Passion of Frida Kahlo, Extremities, Antigone in New York, and Your Own Thing. She has performed in regional theater throughout the country. Her film credits include Center Stage, Revenge of the Nerds II, and Cheaper to Keep Her. She has appeared as a guest star on several popular television series, including Law and Order, Cosby, Trapper John M.D., and All in the Family, and was featured in the NBC-TV movie of the week, “ The Annisa Ayala Story.” López and her husband, conductor Vincent Fanuele, have two children, Alex and Gabriella. They live in Montclair, NJ.

Los ángeles se han fatigado is a production of Pregones Theater. Written by Luis Rafael Sánchez and directed by Alvan Colón Lespier, this surrealistic solo show starred Rosalba Rolón and told the story of Angela Santoni Vincent, Princess of Yauco.

Pregones Theater, the premiere bilingual arts-in-education organization & Latino theatre company for young audiences, was born in 1979 in Manhattan and raised in the Bronx. To date the company has performed in 280 U.S. cities, staged 75 new works and presented more than 300 guest artists. Pregones has participated in festivals and conferences in Brazil, Colombia, Cuba, France, Italy, Mexico, Nicaragua, Peru, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Russia, Spain and Venezuela. It is theater in English, in Spanish and bilingual. It is urban theater, original theater with live music and movement. This year marks the company's 23rd season, from a single desk to a company housed in a 20,000 square foot facility that is meant to become a permanent theater in the Bronx. The Pregones ensemble makes art and joins art makers across the country, as participants and leaders of active networks from the Bronx to Boston to Philadelphia to Washington, DC to the Appalachia region to New Orleans. Many actors, directors, playwrights and musicians have flourished with Pregones. A core group of veteran artists serve as mentors to the younger, newer ensemble members who have worked with Pregones throughout the years. The company carries a Main Stage Season, a National Touring Residencies Program, a Visiting Artists Series, Pregones Summer Stage and several local and national projects.

Daniel Marcove began his acting career in 1976 in Despertar de primavera, and has been in over fifty productions since. He has worked with some of Argentina’s leading directors including Agustín Alezzo, Oscar Fessler, Omar Grasso, Julio Ordano, Beatriz Mattar, Osvaldo Bonet, Julio Baccaro, David Amitin, Jaime Kogan, Robert Villanueva and Manuel Iedvabni. His acting credits include Recordando con Ira, Nuestro pueblo, María esturado, Fuente ovejuna, Galileo Galilei, Don Gil de la calzas verdes, Las Brujas de Salem, Stefano, Tartufo, Arriba corazón, El tiempo y la habitación, Volvió una noche, Tres mañanas, La muerte de una viajante, Años difíciles, among others. His directing credits include Nunca usarás medias de seda, Viejos conocidos, Auto-Da-Fe, Entre bamblinas, Bar Ada, Tenesy, El Puente, Locos de verano, El saludador, El novio de la memoria, La delfina, Una pasión, Pingüinos, Crema rusa and El principito. As an actor, he has also been nominated for the Molière Prize (1985) and the ACE Award (1992, 1997), and, as a director, has won the Trinidad Guevara Award, María Guerrero Award (both1997/98), Pepino Prize (1996/97), Florencio Sánchez Award, Leónidas Barleta and ACE awards (all in 1998).

Lilian Olhagaray began her performing career in 1958 with Teatro Universitario de Uruguay. Her starring roles include works by Lope de Vega, Shaw, Priestly, Benedetti, Chekov, Gibson, Valle Inclán, Pirandello, Shakespeare, Kartun, Sánchez, Albee, Goldman, Miller, Cabrujas, Langsner, Badillo, Rovner, Williams, and O’Neill. She has also received the following acting awards and nominations: Uruguay de Casa del Teatro (Featured Actress), Ministry of Culure of Costa Rica (Best Actress), Premio Escarabajo de Oro, Premio Florencio, Uruguay Critics Association, among others. She also served as a visiting lecturer for the University of Costa Rica, and at the Escuela de Teatro de la Gaviota.

Rafael Hernández...Romance, produced by The Society of the Educational Arts, Inc./Sociedad Educativa de las Artes, Inc. (SEA), is a romantic musical revue about the life, career and music of one of the greatest Latin American composers, Rafael Hernández. Created and directed by Manuel A. Morán, Rafael Hernández...Romance, is a musical revue of about thirty of Rafael Hernández’s greatest compositions, performed in Spanish with a cast of six professional singer/actors and a small orchestra. After five successful years, seen by an audience of more than 45,000, Rafael Hernández...Romance is still considered one of the most beloved Latino musical revues as well as culturally enriching and educational performances today. Rafael Hernández...Romance won the ACE Award for Best Musical Production in 1999 as well as participated in the 35th annual Festival de Teatro Internacional, where the show toured all major theatres of Puerto Rico. SEA is a not-for-profit, Hispanic/Bilingual Arts-in-Education organization that is dedicated to the empowerment and educational advancement of children and young adults. SEA is responsible for reviving the tradition of producing children's theatre in Spanish in New York City, a tradition that had been abandoned for more than 18 years. SEA’s theatre, Los Kabayitos Puppet & Children's Theater is New York's only Latino children's theater (possibly the only professional Latino children’s theater in the United States). Today, SEA has over 13 shows in repertory and performs over 150 shows a year in New York and over 200 shows a year in Puerto Rico, reaching a combined audience of over 150,000 per year.

Geraldo Rivera, hard-hitting investigative reporter, accomplished interviewer and champion of citizens' rights, is one of America's most accomplished television journalists. A veteran foreign correspondent, he has been on or beyond the frontlines in virtually every conflict from the violent coup in Chile and the Yom Kippur War (1973); the civil wars in Laos, Guatemala, the Philippines and Nicaragua (1976-83); the vicious ethnic conflicts in Lebanon (1980-83); Croatia, Bosnia and Kosovo (1998-99); to the dark heart of Colombia’s brutal civil war (2001). He has won the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award three times, most recently in 2000, for his NBC News documentary on women in prison. Rivera has received more than 170 awards for journalism, including the prestigious George Foster Peabody Award, three national and seven local Emmys, two Columbia-Dupont and three Scripps Howard Journalism awards. He has received three honorary doctorate degrees, is the author of five books and is the owner and publisher of the award-winning Red Bank, New Jersey-based weekly newspaper The Two River Times for which he also writes a weekly column. A well-known crusading attorney, Rivera changed careers in 1970 when he joined New York's WABC-TV as a reporter for "Eyewitness News." In 1972, he presented a landmark exposé of deplorable conditions at the Willowbrook State School for the mentally ill. These award-winning reports led to a government investigation, court intervention, the subsequent closing of the institution and a fundamental change in the way our society cares for the mentally handicapped. From 1974-1977, he hosted "Good Night America" on the ABC network, where he presented the first television broadcast of the infamous Abraham Zapruder film of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. He became one of the original hosts of "Good Morning America" on ABC. In 1978, he began what would become an eight-year association with the ABC newsmagazine "20/20." Following his fifteen-year association with ABC News, he established the Investigative News Group and produced an eight-year series of live specials for the Tribune Company, including the amusing "Al Capone's Vaults," still the highest rated special in the history of syndicated television. For eleven successful years beginning in 1987, in association with Tribune, he produced and hosted "The Geraldo Rivera Show".

Since 1987, Rivera has been the honorary chairperson for the Working Organization for Retarded Children and Adults' annual Geraldo Rivera Golf and Tennis Classic. The several million dollars raised over the years from this event go towards building homes for mentally and developmentally challenged people. In 1990, he founded the Maravilla Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to equal opportunity education, and he "adopted" an entire inner-city junior high school class. Rivera promised to subsidize their college education, contingent upon completion of high school, and at this time is helping support seven students now in college or graduate school. Rivera also sponsors five children through the Save the Children Foundation. In addition to creating awards at his two alma maters, Brooklyn Law School and the University of Arizona, Rivera established the Allen Cruz Rivera Scholarship in 1994 to benefit students with academic achievement and in need of financial support to continue their education. Named in honor of his late father, these scholarship awards $1000 each year to a deserving student at the Hostos-Lincoln Academy of Science in New York City. In 1994, Geraldo joined CNBC, and began his highly successful, issue-oriented series "Rivera Live." On February 4, 1997, Rivera's critically acclaimed coverage of the O.J. Simpson civil trial verdict set an all-time CNBC ratings record and the series is today still the network's highest rated. He is currently producing specials for the Travel Channel as well as reporting on the war on terror from Afghanistan for Fox News Channel.

Jesús Ruíz was born in Cardenas, Cuba. Originally an art instructor, he took a course on stage design conducted in Havana by Pavel M. Gabor of the Bratislava National Theater (present-day Slovakia). He later studied communication techniques in design, sponsored by the Higher Technical School, Ministry of Construction, in Havana. Mr. Ruíz has worked for the most outstanding theater directors in his country and has won several prizes and awards. His work in the theater for children and the youth carries a significant weight within his work as a stage designer. He has also made the costume designs for several of Tomás Gutiérrez Alea's films. On two occasions, he was the commissary of the Cuban exhibition to the Prague Theater Quadrennial. He currently combines his work as a stage and costume designer for both theater and films with his work as a sculptor. In 1988, he was decorated with the Distinción por la Cultura Nacional Award in recognition for his outstanding work in contributing to the promotion of his country's national culture. Mr. Ruíz designed and produced the costumes and masks for the play The Moon is Watching at Me, staged by IATI.

Jaime Sánchez made his debut originating the role of Chino in the original production of West Side Story. He performed the role for the two year run of the musical at the Winter Garden Theatre. His next Broadway show was Oh Dad, Poor Dad, Mom’s Hung in the Closet and I’m Feeling So Sad, which also ran for two years and then toured the major cities of the United States, returning to Broadway where it had an additional run. His first film role was in the groundbreaking movie, David and Lisa, whereupon Sidney Lumet cast him as Jesús Ortiz in the award winning film The Pawnbroker. In 1966, his portrayal of a young gangster in Conerico Was Here To Stay at the Cherry Lane Theatre garnered him exceptional notices from the critics and the Theatre World and Clarence Derwent Awards. In 1970, he toured Europe with the American Place Theatre Company. He also made numerous appearances in productions of the New York Shakespeare Festival, most notably his highly-lauded performance as Mark Antony in Julius Cæsar. Anxious to expand his skills and horizons, he crossed the Andes Mountains to direct the first Latin American version of West Side Story in Chile. He returned to Hollywood to co-star in the classic film The Wild Bunch, directed by the master western filmmaker Sam Peckinpah. For that film, he received the Laurel Award presented by the Exhibitors of the Motion Picture Industry. He later starred in a number of Spanish language films released in the United States and Latin America for Columbia Pictures. Some of his other screen credits include The Next Man (with Sean Connery), Serpico (with Al Pacino), Bobby Deerfield, Beach Red, River of Promises, Florida Straits and Carlito’s Way. Sánchez has made guest star appearances on many television series over the years, including "Koiak," "Miami Vice" "The Equalizer," "Spenser for Hire," "Law and Order" and "The American Playhouse" (where he was critically-praised for his interpretation of the title character in The House of Ramon Iglesia). He is a member of the world famous Actors Studio.

Carmelo Santana Mojica holds a Bachelor’s degree in Education, a Master’s degree in Hispanic Studies from the University of Puerto Rico and a Ph.D. with specialization in Spanish Golden Age Theater from the Universidad Complutense de Madrid. In Puerto Rico, Dr. Santana has worked extensively as an actor, designer and director. His latest credits as director include La celosa de si misma by Tirso de Molina, Diatriba de amor contra un hombre sentado by García Márquez, Las criadas by Jean Genet and Romances y romancillos, a compilation of Spanish traditional romances. In 1979, he received the Best Supporting Actor Award from the Chamizal Siglo de Oro Drama Festival and in 1982, the Alejandro Tapia y Rivera Award for Best Costume Design, among others. He has also received scholarships from the Puerto Rican Culture Institute and the Institute of Iberoamerican Cooperation in Spain. Currently Dr. Santana is a professor at the University of Puerto Rico and Associate Artistic Director of Teatro Círculo in New York City.

Grettel Trujillo: Best Actress Award (Premio Luna) at the First Miami International Solo Performance Festival, May 2001, with El Enano en la botella (The Dwarf in the Bottle), by Abilio Estevez, directed by Raul Martin. National Theater Prize (Premio Caricato 2001), awarded by Union Nacional de Escritores y Artistas de Cuba (Cuban Artists and Writers Association), for El Enano en la botella, La Habana, 2001. Avellaneda Prize, Camaguey Theater Festival, for her leading role in Los siervos by Virgilio Pinera, directed by Raul Martin, Camaguey, Cuba, 2000. Also leading actress for two other Pinera's plays with the group Teatro de La Luna (Theater of the Moon) since 1998: Electra Garrigo and La boda, directed as well by Raul Martin.Has toured Venezuela (Caracas, Puerto La Cruz, Valencia, Guanare, Puerto Ordaz), Chile (Santiago, Valparaiso, Temuco, Puerto Montt) and Colombia (Santa Marta, Manizales) as part of Teatro de La Luna and Teatro en Las Nubes (Theater Over the Clouds), from 1997 to 1999.Has performed several drama series and teleplays for Cuban Television, among them “Juegos de medianoche” (Midnight Games), “La otra cara “(The Other Face) and “Entre mamparas” (Between Glass Doors). Graduated Suma Cum Laude, Facultad de Teatro del Instituto Superior de Arte (National Academy of Arts; School of Performing Arts), Havana, June 1995. Best Actress Award at the Havana Solo Performance Festival for The Guilty Ladies, Havana, March 1995.

Volvió una noche was originally presented in New York as part of Repertorio Español’s Festival of Jewish Latin American Theater, a movement practically unknown in the United States, with the exceptions of Moisés Kaufman (The Three Trials of Oscar Wilde, The Laramie Project) and Ariel Dorfman (Death and the Maiden). Volvió una noche, written by Eduardo Rovner and directed by Alejandro Samek, is the story of a nontraditional interfaith marriage juxtaposed with the Latin-American concept of magic realism. A Jewish mother returns from the dead and finds that everything her son has told her about his life has been a lie. He is not a doctor, or a classical violinist, and what’s worse, he's about to marry a single mother...who's Catholic. The production is a truly international collaboration between Alejandro Samek's Teatro Andamio 90, a cutting edge theatre group that focuses on great contemporary and classic work, and Repertorio Español.

Repertorio Español was founded in 1968 by Producer Gilberto Zaldívar and Artistic Director René Buch (q.v.) to introduce the best of Latin American, Spanish and Hispanic-American theatre in distinctive, quality productions, and to bring theatre to a broad audience in New York City and across the country, including senior citizens, students and Hispanics of all national backgrounds. Robert Weber Federico joined the company two years later as Resident Designer and Associate Artistic Producer, completing the organizational profile that is Repertorio Español today. From its earliest days, Repertorio has maintained a dramatic ensemble, attracting many talented veteran and emerging Hispanic actors, including Ofelia González, the first actress to win an Obie Award without ever having performed in English. Another very special addition was Pilar Rioja in 1973, marking the beginning of a relationship which has established Ms. Rioja as a legend in Spanish Dance. In 1980, the musical director Pablo Zinger, initiated a musical ensemble that presented zarzuelas, operas, and elegant musical anthologies. The artistic achievement of Repertorio Español; the support of its audiences; the contributions from individual donors; the participation of America’s most respected corporations and foundations, building bridges to the Hispanic-American community; and the ongoing support of government agencies have enabled the company to become a national treasure, providing a rich cultural environment which is unmatched by any other Spanish language theatre company in the United States.

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HOLA programs are made possible, in part, by funds from the New York State Council on the Arts;
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