The National Latino AIDS Awareness Day (NLAAD) takes place annually on October 15th, the last day of Hispanic Heritage month. NLAAD is a community mobilization and social marketing campaign focused on HIV testing, awareness prevention and education. Today, a group of Latino actors assembled on a stoop in Park Slope, Brooklyn for the taping of a Public Service Announcement for National Latino HIV/AIDS Awareness Day.
HIV and AIDS is not just a "gay" disease. HIV testing is important for EVERYONE - gay, straight, and everything in between. It is important to get tested; its something you need to do for yourself...for your health, para tu salud.
Last summer I had the opportunity to act in a short film, written and directed byAdonis Williams. My character, Miriam, is loud and likes attention. She only has a few lines, one of which seems to have been written specifically for me: "iVamos a tomarnos fotos!" this translates to "Let's take photos!" Coincidence??? HA!!! The cast consisted of seasoned SAG actors and it felt good to work with and learn from them.
Adonis's vision was to have a birthday party scene recorded in one continuous take as if it were being video taped by a family member in 2003, using a camcorder. Everyone in the cast had to know their marks as they walked throughout the apartment to develop the scene as the camera was rolling. There were no cuts, there was no room for editing...just one continuous 11 minute take. PRETTY COOL! We shot the bi-lingual script on what seemed to be the hottest day of the year but we played our roles, danced, ate, and had a fun time while getting it done.
One of the realities I've learned so far is that sometimes you work on projects that may not actualize; fortunately, that wasn't the case with this one. It was very gratifying to receive an email letting us know that CECILIA'S BIRTHDAY was accepted into the Manhattan Film Festival.
Its kinda cool to see my name on the screen credits!!
Most members of the cast attended the screening and it literally felt like a family reunion.
From left to right: Joey Lindicy, Natalie Toro, Edgar Jimz, Adonis, and moi
Rimayri Perez, Adonis, Samantha Torres and Natalie Toro
This is what happens when Latinos haven't seen each other in a while...you get all touchy feely and show each other love.