Voz Latina on the Radio

Broadcasting the passion, struggle, texture and color of our community

Published on LatinoLA: May 21, 2003

Voz Latina on the Radio

Voz Latina, a series of radio programs in Spanish, recently introduced 80 new public-service announcements and a new 20-episode dramatic anthology to go along with its previous 62 programs, all in Spanish, featuring Latino stars. Voz Latina offers these programs, three of which have recently won two major broadcasting awards, to radio stations around the world.

Lately, 15 stations on the Radio Unica network joined the growing number of stations airing Voz Latina?s programs. Through EWTN short-wave radio, Voz Latina programs reach the U.S. Southwest, Mexico, Central and South America and the Caribbean.

?Voz Latina programs capture the passion, struggle, texture and color of Hispanic American living and deliver them to millions of listeners worldwide,? said Melba Novoa, producer/director of Voz Latina. ?These spots and programs were created with the help of the top writers and actors in the world of Latino entertainment.?

Radio production is not new to Family Theater Productions, which began in 1947 to produce a weekly dramatic radio program that aired for 22 years on the Mutual Broadcasting Company network. It has been producing Spanish-language radio dramas since 1996.

Recently, Voz Latina?s programs have won recently two prestigious 2002 awards:

? Golden Eagle Award for excellence in performing arts for its 20-episode anthology ?Historias para Mejorar el Mundo,? from Nosotros, an organization founded by Ricardo Montalb?n in 1970 to improve the image of Latinos in the entertainment industry. It received the award at a recent gala event, hosted by Montalb?n, before such other recipients as Antonio Banderas and Jon Secada.

? Gabriel Award and Certificate of Merit for excellence in programs that uplift the human spirit for its half-hour dramas, ?Viejos los Cerros? (?Young at Heart?) and ?La F?bula del Hombre Que lo Sab?a Todo? (?The Fable of the Man Who Knew It All?) respectively. The Gabriel Awards, sought by TV and radio networks, independent stations, national cable stations and producers in the U.S. and Canada, are presented by the Catholic Academy of Communication Arts Professionals, formerly Unda-USA. Voz Latina received the Gabriel Award, its fourth since 1998, recently along with such other recipients as ABC News, CBS News Productions, the Canadian Broadcasting Company and Univisi?n, the top-rated Spanish TV network in the U.S.

?Family Theater Productions and Voz Latina are proud and grateful for these prestigious awards,? said Holy Cross Father Wilfred Raymond, national director of Family Theater Productions.

?These awards affirm our efforts to position Voz Latina as the premiere producer of Spanish-speaking radio dramas and PSAs in the U.S. These are entertaining, thought-provoking programs that should feed the soul and inspire the heart of our Latino brothers and sisters,? Raymond said.

Voz Latina?s programs and spots were created with the help of top writers and actors in the world of Latino entertainment. The programs, which are now being offered to radio stations that carry Spanish-language or bilingual programming, are:

Super?monos en Familia ? An assortment of 80 engaging and humorous 60-second PSAs featuring star actor Ricardo Montalb?n and other celebrities.

Sabor a Vida ? A new anthology of 20 highly-entertaining, 26-minute dramatic episodes exploring Latino life through drama, farce, and comedy, with a special focus on young Latino families.

Historias para Mejorar el Mundo ? A collection of 37 wildly creative 26-minute plots dramatizing contemporary urban issues like immigration, unemployment, family life, domestic violence, health, discrimination, gangs, tradition, spirituality and love.

La Historia de Qui?n Soy ? A series of 43 dynamic and provocative 26_-minute episodes depicting the Cervantes family, a fictional U.S. Latino family caught in the boiling pot of conflicting cultures, with equal parts of humor and tragedy. This is the first radionovela created by and for Latinos in the U.S. It won two 1998 Gabriel Awards.

Special Programs ? Seasonal radio specials for Our Lady of Guadalupe, December 12 (El Mejor, 48 minutes, which won a 2000 Gabriel Award) and Easter (La Pasi?n y la Resurrecci?n de Cristo, 52 minutes.)

These programs feature all-star casts, including: Ricardo Montalb?n (Spy Kids II, Fantasy Island), Lupe Ontiveros (As Good As It Gets, Selena), Eduardo Palomo (Coraz?n Salvaje, Juan del Diablo), Lucy Gallardo (El ?ngel Exterminador), Randy Vasquez (JAG), Jenny Gago (Nurse Betty), Maria Canals (American Family, Brothers Garcia), Emilio Delgado (Sesame Street), Rafael Incl?n (El Coronel No Tiene Qui?n le Escriba), Dami?n Bichir (Sexo, Pudor y L?grimas, Rojo Amanecer), Ana Patricia Rojo (Mar?a la del Barrio) and Hector Bonilla (Rojo Amanecer).

More than 180 Voz Latina programs are now available in high-quality, easy-to-use CD format to Hispanic radio stations, radio networks and internet broadcasters. Eventually, they will be available on a retail basis to the public.

For more information or in case stations need to obtain a ?Broadcast License Request Form,? contact: Melba Novoa, producer, Voz Latina, 7201 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood, CA 90046; phone, toll free: 888-264-4611.

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