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HELP!! puerto rican accent needed for role

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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 3rd April 2002, 20:39
deuxelle deuxelle is offline
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Question

Hi! My name is Alexa and I am searching for some help in developing my accent for a role I am planning to audition for in May. The character is Anita from West Side Story, and I thought that there might be someone who could give me some advice in making my accent more authentic.

Alexa

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Old 21st April 2002, 09:04
Suki Suki is offline
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Arrow Deuxelle you won't be getting much of a response

I think Anita from West Side Story was done brilliantly by Rita Moreno of which she won an Oscar for in 1962....but it is a role that is stereotypical and not something realistic and accurate about the state of most Puerto Ricans...frankly if there is a role for a latino character available in acting land out there I don't think a Gringa like you seem to be Deuxelle would get any support from the majority of Puerto Rico.com. I would prefer a Latin actress or actor play the role (and West Side Story) made some sorry mistakes in some parts by mixing Mexican culture and Puerto Rican culture in some of its scenes and lines....and that usually occurrs when non-Latino people are the writers and creators and who do not respect the distinctions enough to differentiate between the plethora of Latin American cultural modes. Puerto Ricans do not speak Spanish like Mexicans at all, that is similar to saying that Irish accents from Ireland and California or New York English are the same....if you have half a brain Deuxelle you realize that calling every English speaking country on planet earth British is a mistake. North Americans do not speak English like Irish or Australians or Jamaicans or Nigerians do. Same goes for the Puerto Ricans vs. Mexicans and so on....but the way you phrased that question makes me think you are self-centered, insensitive and prejudiced Deuxelle. And that might not be the case at all. But that is the way it has come accross and why so little response to your question from the Puerto Rican members on PR.com.

Good Luck.

Suki.
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Old 14th May 2002, 12:52
somethingcorporate somethingcorporate is offline
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"....but the way you phrased that question makes me think you are self-centered, insensitive and prejudiced Deuxelle."

Suki, that is the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard. Are you racist? What's your problem? All that Deuxelle was trying to do was politely request help from someone to help strengthen her Puerto Rican accent. You should be ashamed of yourself for being so rude and condescending. Furthermore, you made several unfair assumptions for no apparent reasons. Do you have a personal vendetta against anyone who isn't Puerto Rican? Is that what this is, or what? Also, be GLAD that Deuxelle is trying to nail a great Puerto Rican accent, as opposed to just going in to the audition and not caring about how she portrays Puerto Ricans. Clearly, Deuxelle came to the message board to ask for help to ACCURATELY portray Puerto Ricans. Why not acknowledge this, and be grateful that she's not self-centered, insensitive, and prejudiced as you are?

-17 year old in Texas
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Old 10th July 2002, 16:49
Suki Suki is offline
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Wink Look Texas whomever you are 17 year old :)

Quote:
Originally posted by somethingcorporate
"....but the way you phrased that question makes me think you are self-centered, insensitive and prejudiced Deuxelle."

Suki, that is the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard. Are you racist?
Suki: Are you hopeless Texas? If I am naive and unthinking enough to go to an all African-American forum and ask for advice on playing Bo jangles in some play and I am not African American I wonder what kind of response am I going to get? Could be I am completely wrong about Deuxelle here. I did mention I might be as you so conveniently ignored.

What's your problem?
Suki: Texas guy you are very young so I will help explain it plainly to you...in words you may grasp. Many of the members in this forum are not Anita from West Side Story with accents and all, yet they are Puerto Ricans all the same. The play and the movie is almost 40 years old and a fine piece of art but we are tired (at least I am of non-Puerto Ricans portraying roles of peoples and communities that they are too lazy to do the research on). I am not an actress but I can tell Alexa what I would do to prepare for any role if I was:

1. Who was Anita? A Puerto Rican immigrant girl living in low income neighborhood in NYC in early 60's that worked in a bridal shop. I am sure Anita had dreams of "making it" and marrying and all that. Her reality was different than what she expected when she left her native island....explaining the powerful scene of confrontation she has in the candy store with the members of the "Jets" gang when Maria sends her to warn Tony after he kills Bernardo (Maria's brother). Why? What is Anita's motive to risk humiliation and almost being raped by the Jets as the widowed ex girlfriend of the slain leader of the "sharks" the rival gang of the Jets? She is mistreated and lies about Maria's state to Tony? Why does she lie to Tony? Could it be she is angry at all the violence, her broken dreams and all the racism and discrimination and lack of opportunity she experiences in NYC? At the sense of loss and disrespect by "real" Americans? Who are the Puerto Ricans and why are they in the West Side of NYC? Why are the poor irish and poles, etc. feuding territory with the Puerto Ricans? If Alex is a smart girl she will understand the human circumstances behind it all, and prepare a subtext for Anita's character development. Her accent is a superficial point in general and all she needs to do is study the rythym and tones of Puerto Rican Spanish (though she may not understand it) in order to form a dialect inflection on her English. If you are a Native Spanish speaker you would emphasize all your vowels in your words in English and gloss over the consonants.

All that Deuxelle was trying to do was politely request help from someone to help strengthen her Puerto Rican accent.

Suki: I don't think she was very thoughtful about anything related to Anita...you may disagree...lol.

You should be ashamed of yourself for being so rude and condescending.

Suki: She should be ashamed of herself as a person who apparently has an interest in acting in having very little analysis factor of character development.

Furthermore, you made several unfair assumptions for no apparent reasons. Do you have a personal vendetta against anyone who isn't Puerto Rican?

Suki: I don't approve of people who purport to be actors who don't do their homework. Pacino can play a Cuban, Puerto Rican or any other ethnicity he wants because he does his homework and puts characters he plays as human. Caricatures is all most people including Alexa here seem to do in regard to character who are not part of their own culture. I love people regardless of ethnicity as long as they are sensitive, perceptive and accurate portrayals of human life. Anita a la Deuxelle help me with my Rican accent types rarely are Texas.

Is that what this is, or what? Also, be GLAD that Deuxelle is trying to nail a great Puerto Rican accent, as opposed to just going in to the audition and not caring about how she portrays Puerto Ricans. Clearly, Deuxelle came to the message board to ask for help to ACCURATELY portray Puerto Ricans. Why not acknowledge this, and be grateful that she's not self-centered, insensitive, and prejudiced as you are?

Texas you need to grow up and start analyzing why people ask the questions they do in the first place and I did say I might be wrong about Alexa here....but she did not get a response for almost three weeks? Why? What do you think? Is it cuz us PR's on here are all racists and self-centered? The young....I don't know....lol. Peace to you young man. Suki.

-17 year old in Texas
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Old 10th July 2002, 17:36
Ecuajey Ecuajey is offline
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Talking Suki...

I'm not defending somethingcorporate, but just becauses he's young (He's older than me.) doesn't mean he can't grasp what you're writing or is too ignorant to understand anything. Though, I know your intentions were well. Just lay off the youngsters, you sweet old lady. lol.

Could you e-mail me, I need to tell you something.
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Old 30th July 2002, 15:31
Sussa Sussa is offline
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Exclamation Oh dear!

frankly if there is a role for a latino character available in acting land out there I don't think a Gringa like you seem to be Deuxelle would get any support from the majority of Puerto Rico.com.

How nice of you to speak for all of us.


if you have half a brain Deuxelle you realize that calling every English speaking country on planet earth British is a mistake.

At what point did she call Puerto Rican's "Mexicans" or or any other error? Why are you attacking this girl? All the poor girl said was "Hi! My name is Alexa and I am searching for some help in developing my accent for a role I am planning to audition for in May. The character is Anita from West Side Story, and I thought that there might be someone who could give me some advice in making my accent more authentic." You yourself said, " it is a role that is stereotypical and not something realistic and accurate about the state of most Puerto Ricans...." and is that HER fault that some old guy in the 50's wrote a stereotyped play?

You say, "Many of the members in this forum are not Anita from West Side Story with accents and all, yet they are Puerto Ricans all the same. The play and the movie is almost 40 years old and a fine piece of art but we are tired (at least I am of non-Puerto Ricans portraying roles of peoples and communities that they are too lazy to do the research on). I am not an actress ......"

How on earth do you know she has NOT researched her role? It is interesting to note you feel strongly about this play in a positive and a negative way. A "fine piece of art" yet "old and stereotyped." Well, which is it, Suki? It is here in this last paragraph you can see the REAL problem, and the real problem is not Deuxelle and her undeserved half a brain. It's Suki's reluctance to attach anything negative to anything Puerto Rican, and also disgust for gringas playing Latina roles. Well, whose fault is the gringa role thing? It's the DIRECTORS. And as for the other thing......

Suki, it's okay to say West Side Story sucks. It's old and sterotyped. Your not a bad Puerto Rican for thinking so....most probably DO! But people who like acting want to be in plays, and it isn't about Puerto Ricans to most actresses. It's just a play that desperately needs to be updated. And that's not her fault.

Your bad attitude will get you nowhere.







[Edited by Sussa on 31st July 2002 at 01:34]
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Old 17th August 2002, 11:26
Suki Suki is offline
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Sussa,

How are you gonna get advice for a Puerto Rican accent on an old stereotyped role? I find that very question a little suspect in the first place. Lol.

I think the music was nice. I don't have all or nothing feelings about art in general. I can see the flaws and still find value in something that merits it. Lol.

I do not take issue with Alexa wanting to play Anita. She wants to act nothing wrong with that. What I don't like is that she does not do research first and take it seriously. I think art (good art) requires discipline and training and dedication. And something about her post told me she wanted a quickie fix to her problem of character development and that irritated me. Aint NO SHORTCUTS in art in my honest opinion. You either do it with dedication or professionalism or not at all. Or if you do it for fun mostly....say so. "Hey I do this for fun....can you give me some tips?" I would have responded totally differently.

Sussa have you ever had a real piano teacher, ballet teacher, acting teacher, art teacher? The good ones are tough and they demand a lot. Why? Because they sacrifice a whole lot for their dedication to something that is not well funded in this society and they do it out of passion, and dedication and deep love for the form and the discipline....and do not suffer half-hearted, and less than complete all concentration and effort from their pupils. And they should. YOU take all that lightly Sussa. I do not.

If you are gonna do art, do it right....con entrega....or if you do it for fun....then say so and I would act accordingly. I never meant to hurt anybody's feelings....and my attitudes are always positive and optimistic if I were cynical and uncaring I never would have responded to her in the first place...lol

Good day,

Suki
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