“A lot of times I was on a team and I was the only Latina when we were doing improv. If I said something in English, but I have an accent, or I said a word wrong, they would make that the funny thing.”
Raiza Licea was tired of being limited by the things that set her apart from her fellow performers on the improv stage, which is why the actress, comedian and activist joined with fellow Latinx writers and comedians Oscar Montoya, Tony Rodriguez, and Carlos Santos to create Spanish Aqui Presents, the Upright Citizen Brigade’s first and only all Latinx main stage show. Based in Los Angeles, Spanish Aqui Presents is also the Earwolf Podcast Network’s only Latinx podcast and provides a space for Raiza, Oscar, Tony, and Carlos to chop it up with other Latinx voices and legends about the comedy of everyday life while exploring their unique experiences navigating the mosaic that is Latinx culture. And true to the group’s origins, they always inject a bit of improv into each episode.
“Improv, for a long time, has been a white space but with Spanish Aqui presents, we are building the arena, this is our space. These are our rules,” says Montoya, “The basic core of improv is to support someone’s idea. We have that support system where we can say something and even if it’s taken out of context or the wrong way, we know that it’s all love — our intention is to celebrate and to push-up.”
Get to know Spanish Aqui Presents in the above video, which is the first episode of our new series, Los Ángeles. Also subscribe to the podcast now.