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The Influence of Jackson Heights’ Latin Culture on John Leguizamo

Follow John Leguizamo as he revisits his roots in Jackson Heights and identifies how the vibrant Latin culture influenced his Broadway show Latin History for Morons.

Premieres Friday, November 16 at 9 p.m. on PBS (check local listings). Streams Saturday, November 17 at and on PBS apps.


I didn't learn a lot of history but I did get a sense of pride from growing up in Jackson Heights because my neighbors were predominantly Latin and all my friends were from every country of Latin America and you get a sense of pride from that and I realized that you know Latin humor, Latin culture was bigger than then when I was being told at school and when I was being told on through the messaging that comes from television.

Everybody around me was Latin, everybody appreciated being Latin, we weren't ashamed of ourselves within our own community so when you got outside of it that you realize, 'Oh I wonder wonder what our worth is, you know?'

But what happened in the 3,000 years between our great indigenous civilizations and us?! How do we become so non-existent because if you don't see yourself represented outside of yourself... you just feel invisible. The whole thing about the play was to address the issues that why are we such a populous people with incredible resources and why aren't we as successful?

Those who cannot remember the past are doomed to repeat it. Coño!


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