Linda Nieves-Powell

Oct 25, 11 Linda Nieves-Powell

City you live in:
Staten Island, NY.

Occupation and why?
I founded Latino Flavored Productions Inc. in 1995 and I have worked as theatrical writer, director and producer ever since. In 2011, I have started a new film company called Odd Girl In Entertainment. I do what I do because I need to share what I’ve discovered or what I’m in the process of discovering about life, human nature, and what it really means to be Latina living in America.

A regular day consists of?
Mommy duties always come first, and then it’s a juggling act for the rest of the day. Eighteen hours a day I’m either writing and developing new film or theater projects, casting those projects, planning rehearsal or shooting schedules, making travel arrangements for the actors who are performing out of state, planning a film shooting, researching new film technology, meetings with graphic designers and other freelance creatives, making time for a Zumba® workout and making sure that I have enough in the budget to keep doing what I love to do.

How do you define success?
Success to me is feeling completely comfortable in my own skin. So that means everyday I have to make decisions not based on what is popular but what feels right to me. And making sure that I remove any safety nets because embracing uncertainty is what keeps me most authentic.

What has been your biggest challenge?
My biggest challenge has been embracing my rebellious nature while staying connected to a larger community. For as long as I can remember I have been the most rebellious person in my family, in high school, college and in my career. I don’t like to follow rules; I don’t want to be in the “in” crowd because I believe that “in” crowds are safety nets. Although “in” crowds allow us to connect to others, we have to be very careful that we don’t allow their ideas or ideals become ours.

What advice would you give a Latina who wants to follow in your footsteps?
If you want to be famous, quit now. If you want to be successful then be driven, be passionate, be determined and be truthful.

What’s on your bucket list?
I have only one item. I’m going to do whatever I want to do when I want to do it! So no need to write it down.

I am proud to be Latina because:
In this lifetime I’m considered less than beautiful and intelligent by mainstream, I’m thought of as a threat with my unique ideas and my love for my culture. I’ve been taught by a long line of warrior princesses that came before me to be proud of where I come from even when others don’t understand what that means.

How do you get your Latin fix?
For food: There’s a great Dominican restaurant nearby called El Pollo. For music, I turn to Marc Anthony, Victor Manuelle and classic salsa bands. Or I sit and revisit old times by looking at family photos.

Spanglish, English, Spanish?
English

What is your favorite Latin restaurant?
Sofrito Restaurant, New York, NY.

My favorite Latina stereotype is:
The red lipstick, hoop-earring, spandex wearing Latinas!

Best advice from mami and/or abuelita:
Calmate!

Favorite home remedy
Vicks.

Favorite Quote:
“This is not a democracy. No art form is. I love the creative process and I love being a complete dictator when it comes to my work. It’s my way or no way at all.” Ricky Gervais

Career Highlights:
Hitting the $1M mark for my play about six Latinas called YO SOY LATINA!, winning the Imagen Award, the HOLA Tespis award, and the Harvard Fuerza Latina award for creating positive images of Latinas.

[fun]♦ I started out as a dancer.
♦ I’m really good at paddleball.
♦ I can’t sing.
♦ I was on an episode of New York Undercover (for a few seconds).[/fun]

[career]
♦ Linda Nieves-Powell is the President and CEO of Latino Flavored Productions Inc., a theater company that has produced culturally relevant plays and events at over 400 colleges and universities in the U.S. since 1995.
♦ She recently started Odd Girl In Entertainment, a film company that is developing two short films and a web series.
♦ Her novel Free Style, a “Thelma and Louise” inspired ride back to the 90′s, is available on Amazon.com and is published by Simon and Schuster.
[/career]

[description]I don’t want to be in the “in” crowd because I believe that “in” crowds are safety nets.[/description]

2 Comments

  1. Yanelba /

    Congrats Linda! It’s so great to know you and I am honored to work with you on YO SOY LATINA!

    You have truthfully inspired me and have helped me inspire and touch so many people.

    Keep up the great work!

    Yanelba
    http://www.yanelba.net

  2. Marcela Landres /

    Love all the work you’ve done with Latino Flavored Productions, and can’t wait to see what amazing stories you’re going to tell through Odd Girl In Entertainment!

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