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'The Latina Christmas Special' captures the universal side of the holidays

12:52 AM

GIFT EXCHANGE– Maria Russell, left, Sandra Valls and Diana Yanez
exchange Christmas gifts during their performance of "The Latina Christmas
Special" on Nov. 21. (Photo by Jesus Figueroa)
Written by Jesus Figueroa

Despite having three unique actresses from different cultural backgrounds, "The Latina Christmas Special" shows that there's always something to cherish about spending time with the family each holiday.

LOOK AT THIS– Sandra Valls, right,
dances with Maria Russell.
Comedian, actress and co-writer of "The Latina Christmas Special" Sandra Valls performs an emotional, hilarious and touching story inspired by her real life.

Valls is able to use her many talents, from stand-up performing to singing and playing the piano, to capture the audience's attention and share a story which makes the audience laugh with the punchlines and be silent with the powerful impactful story.

Her story makes the audience realize how precious each and every moment with family and loved ones can be and to appreciate every memory.

Director Geoffry Rivas did a fantastic job getting the emotional story performed in such a manner in which the entire theater can feel the impact of the story.

GOOD TIME– Diana
Yanez dances as part
of her Christmas story. 
Creator, actress and co-writer Diana Yanez was a delight with the cartoony manner of her Cuban-American Christmas story.

Yanez was lively dancing, moving around the entire stage and portraying the Cuban's over use of the word "coño."

Her monologue was a spectacular view into the Miami, Florida Cuban Christmas traditions which at the end of it all lead to the joy of family unity during the holidays.

Actress and co-writer Maria Russell completes the ensemble with her diverse Mexuanian Christmas story.

FESTIVE– Maria Russell, right,
dances festively as Sandra Valls plays
a Christmas song on the piana.
Russell is highly talented as a dancer and comedian, but her story telling shines here as each story comes with commentary. She's able to add tidbits of information which makes the her story detailed and hilarious.

The story is hilarious with her impressions of her mother, father and eventually her husband as well.

The entire play is a testament to how the memories of family make every holiday great, good or bad times become that which we remember fondly.

The play is a 90-minute emotional experience which delights and inspires. The play will make the audiences laugh and at points cry, or be at the point of tears.

The Latino Theater Company presents "The Latina Christmas Special" at the Los Angeles Theater Center with performances from now to Dec. 20.

Listen to the CW's "Jane the Virgin" star Ivonne Coll talk about why she attended the premiere of "The Latina Christmas Special" on Nov. 21.

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