Entertainment

Karla Souza Is A Trilingual Entertainer Who Never Ceases To Amaze Us

You might recognize Karla Souza as either your favorite Mexican telenovela star or as Laurel Castillo on “How to Get Away with Murder.” The actress is one of many Latinos who has crossed over from telenovela stardom to American markets.

If you had no idea that the actress has an entire, wildly successful career in Mexico, you’re going to want to sit down to truly meet Karla Souza and her ancestors who gave us Souza in all her trilingual glory.

Her full name is Karla Susana Olivares Souza.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

The actress is only 33 years old and has been working as an actress since she was 22 years old, in both Spanish and English language works.

Souza was born in Mexico City on December 11, 1985.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

That’s right. Our girl is a fierce, assertive and heart-open Sagittarius Mexicana. She lived in Mexico City until she was two years old and her family moved to Aspen, Colorado.

Souza attributes her blessings to her paternal abuelita, Elba Silva.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

Elba moved to New York City from Chile in search of a better life. She became a U.S. citizen, which gave Souza’s own father a path to citizenship when he eventually decided to move to the U.S. years later.

Elba was revered for her courage and her “killer Chilean empanadas.”

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

In an op-ed for PopSugar, Souza writes that, “She made killer Chilean empanadas and was stubborn as all get out.” Elba worked as an assistant cook with the Rockefeller family for over 20 years. Elba’s husband became the Rockefellers’ gardener.

Souza’s Chilean father met her Mexicana madre in Mexico City.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

Souza’s father ran his Mexican shoe business from Colorado for five years. Then, as Souza recalls, “I vaguely remember receiving the letter from then President, Bill Clinton, saying something like: “Congratulations! You are now a citizen of the United States of America.” Which to me meant nothing at the time.”

Souza lived in Europe for 8 years and returned to Mexico for another ten years.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

She is proud to be Mexican and proud to be Latina. She first studied acting at Centro de Educación Artística in Mexico city and then went to France to tour with a professional theatre company.

Souza speaks three languages fluently.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

She speaks English, Spanish and French so fluently, that she was offered a role in the French reality TV show “Star Academy.” She turned it down after receiving an invitation to study at London’s Central School of Speech and Drama. She graduated in 2008 with a Bachelor of Arts in acting.

She even studied acting in Moscow, Russia for a minute.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

Souza has been tapped for numerous prestigious awards and invitations, including an acting intensive with Anatoly Smilianski at the end of her college career.

Her television debut was on Mexican telenovela “Verano de amor.”

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

She later scored starring roles in Mexican sitcoms “Los Héroes del Norte” and “La Clinica.” You might also recognize her from Mexican box office hits “Nosotros los Nobles,” “From Prada to Nada,” and “Instructions Not Included.”

She moved to Los Angeles in 2014 to be told she was not “Latina enough” for Latina roles.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

In an op-ed with Pop Sugar, Souza recounts how she would enter an audition for a character only described as “The Latina,” and be questioned. In her own words:

“I’m sorry . . . How exactly are you Latin?” asks the casting director before doing the scene.

“I’m Mexican,” Karla replies.

Still some doubt and skepticism on the casting director’s face prompts Karla to respond:

“My mother is Mexican and my dad is from Chile. I was born in Mexico City. I just moved to Los Angeles two weeks ago.”

Needless to say I didn’t book that job. I wasn’t “Latina enough.”

When she was cast for Shonda Rhimes’ legal drama series How to Get Away with Murder, they wrote her own background into her character’s story.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

Why? Because if you’re Latina, you’re Latina enough, and your story is the story of a Latina. We love that Shonda Rhimes’ team included that her character, Laurel Castillo, was born in Mexico City, just like Souza.

Souza is teasing a project in which she seems to be playing an astronaut and we have questions.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

Caption: “Space jam. ????”

Stop teasing us, Souza! Are you playing first ever Latina astronaut, Ellen Ochoa? Quien es?

What we do know is she’s using her influence to elevate life for Mexicans and Latinxs in the U.S.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

Caption: “TBT: Earlier this month magic happened when over 100 fierce Latinas gathered in LA. We talked about how we will use our collective influence & power to improve conditions for the Latinx community & everyone in the US. We made a commitment to ourselves and to each other. We are not sitting on the sidelines. Stay tuned for more information about what we are working on for the betterment of all. #LatinasLead #LatinaPower

Souza also co-founded the Los Angeles En México non-profit with Kate del Castillo, Ana De La Reguera and Olga Segura.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

Her organization is focusing on the families in San Miguel Tecuanipa and how to rebuild their homes, livelihoods and security after the devastating earthquake in 2017.

Her TEDx talk is the most seen Spanish language talk in history.

CREDIT: TEDx / YouTube

Titled “Sweet are the Fruits of Adversity,” Souza’s talk has more than 3.7 million views to date. If you’re looking for Spanish-language inspo, you know where to go.

In May 2014, Souza married Marshall Trenkmann.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

Trenkmann is a Texan banker, and the two had been together for awhile before tying the knot. They married just four months after their engagement.

The two have a daughter, Gianna, together.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

Four years into their marriage, they welcomed this sweet baby girl. You might have noticed if you keep up with How to Get Away with Murder.

She became an on-screen and IRL mom at the same time.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

How to Get Away with Murder adapted Karla’s real life pregnancy to her character, Laurel Castillo. Her character realized she was pregnant after the baby’s father died in a suspicious fire. :'(

“The one thing people don’t tell you about motherhood is that your life isn’t over.”

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

On Katie Lowes’ podcast “Katie’s Crib,” Souza talks about how she integrates motherhood into her existing, very busy schedule on set. You can tell she gets creative.

Souza is still making time during motherhood, acting and advocating for Latinxs to be part of the #TimesUp movement.

CREDIT: @karlasouza / Instagram

She revealed in February 2018 that she was raped by the director of a TV show she was in when she was 22 years old. She didn’t name her attacker but continues to link to the www.timesupnow.com in her Instagram profile.

We are shipping her, Gianna, everything she stands for and hopefully her role as Ellen Ochoa. ????

READ: Chicharito, Karla Souza, Wilmer Valderrama And Others Show Their Support For Canelo Alvarez

Notice any needed corrections? Please email us at corrections@wearemitu.com

Change Up Your Thanksgiving Dinner With These Latin American Substitutes

Culture

Change Up Your Thanksgiving Dinner With These Latin American Substitutes

GMVozd / Getty Images

Thanksgiving is almost here and the pandemic is changing things for the holiday season. One of the biggest changes is that it is not advised to gather in person for the celebration. This might seem like a bad thing but it does give you the chance to mix things up before a Zoomed Thanksgiving feast. Here are some Latin Americans substitutions you can make to your Thanksgiving table as a test run for next year.

Turkey is great but give some lechon a try.

View this post on Instagram

IT'S THE HOLADAY SEASON at @gringoph!!! (swipe left!!) Catch their newest LECHON CUBANO and HOLADAY BOARDS this yuletide season! Perfect for and family dinners or friend gatherings! . SANCHO HOLADAY BOARD: Whole Original Chicken, BBQ ribs, Adobo Blackmole Soft Tacos, Cream Dory Soft Tacos, LECHON CUBANO Plate, Mexican or Plain Rice, Pitcher of Iced Tea and Ube de Queso Panna Cotta . BUENA HOLADAY BOARD: Whole Original Chicken, BBQ ribs, Adobo Blackmole Soft Tacos, Cream Dory Soft Tacos, TILAPIA FINGERS, Mexican or Plain Rice, Pitcher of Iced Tea and Ube de Queso Panna Cotta . #GringoPH #LechonCubano #HoladayBoards #SpoonsAroundTheWorld . . #FilipinoFoodMovement #vsco #flatlay #foodvsco #instafood #foodgram #foodbeast #foodie #feedfeed #eeeeeats #huffposttaste #buzzfeast #f52grams #onthetable #pepperph #forkspoonmanila #adventure #thefoodiestation #beautifulcuisines #spotmyfood #foodpics #foodphotography #foodbassador #tryitordiet #DMfoodseries #dailyfoodfeed

A post shared by SpoonsAroundTheWorld 🌍🥄 Neil (@spoonsaroundtheworld) on

Lechon is a Cuban pork dish made for big celebrations. Thanksgiving is a big celebration the revolves around food. Lechon is already the meat of choice at a Cuban Thanksgiving and is usually the star of the plate. You can spend hours dealing with a turkey for the tenth year in a row or you can be a little more excited and make this delicious Cuban meal.

Tostones (patacones) are the perfect replacement for potatoes.

Tostones, also called patacones, are made using green plantains. They are tough and starchy so they make a great savory side dish. make sure you double fry these bad boys. Once when they are chopped and a second time after smashing them to their iconic flat shape. If you let the plantain ripen, you can use it to make maduros instead, which are sweet.

Or, take those plantains and make mofongo.

Mofongo uses the same green plantains except they are fried once then mashed. It goes great with pork so this is a perfect little dish to pair with the lechon if you really want to go for it. The Puerto Rican dish is something that will forever change your mind about what you’d like to see at Thanksgiving.

Causa rellena is a Peruvian take on the classic mashed potatoes.

If you want to stick to the potatoes you are used to buying, Peruvian causa rellena will given them a Latin American spin. The dish does not take long to make and requires minimal cooking. The most you have to really cook is boiling the potatoes so you can mash them but the way the dish ends it by popping it in the fridge. Just layer the cooked ingredients and set it in the fridge overnight to save on Thanksgiving Day cooking time.

Corn is always a hit, especially as esquites.

Esquites is one corn dish everyone needs to try at least once. It is a neater version of elote because it is all the same ingredients but in an easier to eat way. Better yet, you can make a big batch or opt for personal servings to make it all cleaner and easier for everyone involved.

Guava con queso pastelitos are the dessert everyone is really asking for.

This little Cuban pastry is probably one of the best desserts ever created. This is not up for debate. It is just a simple fact of Latin American desserts. Honestly, when you taste the sweet and tangy flavor of the guava wrapped in the flaky, buttery pastry, your life will change. Drop the pumpkin for one year and give this Cuban dessert a try.

READ: Take A Tasting Tour Of Latin America This Thanksgiving With This Curated Menu

Notice any needed corrections? Please email us at corrections@wearemitu.com

Four Mexican Children Have Been Nominated For The Children’s Peace Prize And Here’s Why They Each Deserve To Win

Things That Matter

Four Mexican Children Have Been Nominated For The Children’s Peace Prize And Here’s Why They Each Deserve To Win

Yasin Yagci / Getty Images

Mexico is celebrating four compassionate children who have each been nominated for a prestigious international award, for their dedication to solving issues within their own communities.

Three kids from Oaxaca and one from Sinaloa have been nominated for the International Children’s Peace Award – which is award to children from around the world who have made an effort to promote the rights of children and improve the situation of vulnerable minors.

Each of Mexico’s four nominees have done so much for their communities – and the world at large – that it’s going to be a close contest to decide who is the ultimate winner.

Four kids from Mexico are in the running for a prestigious international peace award.

Among 138 children from 42 countries, four Mexican kids have been nominated for the International Children’s Peace Award, which is awarded to minors who have made an effort to promote the rights of children and improve the situation of vulnerable minors.

The award comes with a €100,000 (about $117,000 USD) prize which can be used to invest in the solutions they’ve been championing. In fact, one of last year’s winners was climate change activist Greta Thunberg and peace advocate Divina Maloum from Cameroon.

On this occasion, Mexico’s nominees are counting on the win and include three nominees from Oaxaca and one from the state of Sinaloa.

Each of the children nominated have done incredible work to help solve issues in their communities.

In order to be nominated for the award and to be considered for the top prize, children must demonstrate their commitment to making a “special effort to promote children’s rights and better the situation of vulnerable children,” according to the Children’s Peace Prize website.

It goes without saying that each of Mexico’s four nominees have already checked off each of those requirements, with each of them making major advancements in issues that affect their communities, their country, and children from around the world.

In fact, the issues this group of children have been taking on range from combatting bullying and domestic violence, to increasing access to education, protecting young women and girls from endemic violence, and combatting the global Covid-19 pandemic.

One nominee from Oaxaca founded her own foundation to help advance the issues she cares about.

In an interview with Milenio, Georgina Martínez, 17, said that the award represents a great opportunity.

“This year we are among the 142 nominees from 42 different countries and I believe that without a doubt there is a commitment from all of us as Mexican children and young people to win it to continue fighting for our dreams,” she said.

Martínez, who won the national youth award in 2017, has been working for the rights of children and young people for 10 years through various campaigns, such as “Boys and Girls to the Rescue”, which focused on helping vulnerable minors combat bullying and domestic violence. She also supported the Nutrikids campaign that fed minors in precarious situations, worked to build classrooms in impoverished communities, and has also been a speaker at various conferences.

“My activism began when I was 9 years old, when I participated in the ninth parliament of the girls and boys of Mexico, where I was a children’s legislator. We spent a week at the Chamber of Deputies to work in favor of children’s rights. There I realized that my voice could be heard and that I could be the voice of many children who perhaps did not have access to many of their rights such as education and health,” she told Milenio.

Young Georgina Martínez is in her last year of high school, and she has in mind to continue working in the present and the future to continue being a person and agent of change.

Martínez’s brother is also in the running for his work against the Covid-19 pandemic.

Jorge Martínez, the 13-year-old brother of Georgina, considers it a great honor to represent Oaxaca in the contest.

“I was nominated for my masks project, which consists of using 3D printing to print universal headbands and make acrylic masks, which I donate to hospitals,” he told Milenio.

“I started by making 100 masks, which I financed with my savings, and donated them to the children’s hospital to help hospitalized children so that they wouldn’t be infected with Covid-19. The project went viral allowing me to grow the project and it soon gained international attention,” he added.

Many of his neighbors and friends consider him to be an actual genius but he’s far too modest to take on that title. He said that “the truth is, all this technology is something that I like a lot and it’s fun to be able to work in fields that you enjoy.”

Martínez also shared his plans for the future, telling Milenio that he’d love to move to China to be able to work in robotics and engineering.

Oaxaca also has a third nominee in the global contest.

Oaxaca’s third nominee for the prize is a young ballet dancer, activist, and storyteller – Aleida Ruiz Sosa – who is a defender of women’s rights. She’s currently studying online as she finishes high school and plans to pursue a law degree, in addition to advancing her dance career.

She’s been a longstanding voice for women.

“Since I was very young I have worked hard to help my community. I have a collection of stories called “Rainbow”, that speaks out about violence against women. In fact, I worked with the Attorney General of Oaxaca, and the main thing is that all the proceeds from the sale of these stories will go to the young victims of femicide,” she told Milenio.

Also nominated is 16-year-old Enrique Ángel Figueroa Salazar of Mazatlán, who is passionate about children’s rights and wishes to change local, federal and global societies so that children can live a life free of violence.

Notice any needed corrections? Please email us at corrections@wearemitu.com