PBS Kids’ ‘Alma’s Way’ gives Afro-Latino kids, like my daughter, characters they can relate to
A: Because [the audience will] see other cultures. They’ll see that Alma speaks Spanish every once in a while, and they’ll see that Abuelo speaks mostly Spanish. We’ll see the fact that we’re a mixture of cultures. For example, I found myself writing characters named Tia Gloria And Uncle Nestor — one in English and one in Spanish. Abuelo and Granny Isa (and by the way, I play Granny Isa, named after my mother). But I said, and PBS said, “Well, why aren’t they called Abuelo and Abuela?” Well, and I thought, “Oh, let me think why. Why did I do it that way?” And I realized that it’s because I lived in a bicultural world … that there was a little of this and a little of that, and that comes out. And I think that kids will see that. In the same way that I like aguinaldo, and buena and salsa and Ismael Rivera, but I also love Smokey Robinson and Stevie Wonder and everything that came out of Motown. And so, I hope to reflect that [biculturalism] in the show.