Saturday, September 20, 2008

2008 ALMA Awards

The National Council of La Raza (NCLR) is the largest national Latino civil rights and advocacy organization in the U.S. NCLR created the ALMA Awards in 1995 as part of its strategy to promote fair, accurate, and balanced portrayals of Latinos in the entertainment industry. The show was named "ALMA" (Spanish for "spirit" or "soul") which represents the determined spirit of the Latino people in an effort to reflect the spirit as well as the scope of the awards program.

For 40 years, NCLR has been promoting the advancement of Latino families in this country, creating opportunities and opening doors. The NCLR ALMA Awards are an integral part of that mission: a television entertainment special with a cause - to show how diversity strengthens our country and how inclusion strengthens the entertainment industry.

This year’s NCLR ALMA Awards, hosted once again by Eva Longoria Parker, were taped on August 17 at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium in Pasadena, California. A dazzling array of stars including Paula Abdul, Jessica Alba, Helio Castroneves, the Cheetah Girls, Cristian de la Fuente, Oscar de la Hoya, Zac Efron, Terrence Howard, Wynonna Judd, MARIO, Carlos Mencia, Edward James Olmos, Roselyn Sanchez, Ryan Seacrest, Charlie Sheen, Ashley Tisdale, and Will.I.Am gathered to celebrate and honor Latino contributions in film, television, and music. Special tributes to some of the leading entertainers in all of show business including actress America Ferrera, fashion designer Narciso Rodriguez, singer-songwriter Shakira, and the legendary Linda Ronstadt, who was presented with the Trailblazer Award by internationally renowned opera star Placido Domingo.

In recognition of this year’s election, performers, presenters, and honorees wore red, white, and blue ribbons and participated in special segments during the show to encourage millions of ALMA viewers watching on television or reading about the Awards on the web to go out and vote this November.

Watching this award show and seeing me, us, beautiful brown skin on TV recognizing each other, loving each other was absolutely amazing. I came to tears many times watching it. Hearing the beautiful names with corrects pronunciation and just to see Latinos on TV and it's not cops or breaking news. haha. My people looked beautiful and we are everywhere, being productive and successful!!

I loved the combination of singers, actors, and performers. Beautiful music was made tonight and hearts were definitely touches, mines included. Remembering where you come from and who you are is something so simply but yet many chose to forget to remember. Embrace who you are and love where you came from. It was not always this easy to be PROUD!

Eva did a great job hosting the show and she looked awsome as always, my all time favorite line from her for the night was the comment she made about, having a president who didn't speak english soon and then she wittingly followed up with "haven't we had one of those for the past 8 years..." the look on the faces as the camera panned the room was hella funny, it was a "OMG, did she just say that" moment. Another moment of the night for me was seeing Cheech and Chong on the stage together after 25 years. It was truly history. But what made it so great was how Chong started yelling out "OBAMA!" at the end of there sigment. It was classic!

Overall a fabulous night for people of color. May this award show just grow larger and never stop again.

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