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Thursday, September 12, 2024

Respect Your Elders: Rita Moreno

Actress and singer Rita Moreno (born 1931) is this week’s #RespectYourElders feature.

Rita _Moreno _face

Moreno was born in Puerto Rico and moved to New York City with her mother early in her childhood. At age 11, she began voice acting for Spanish dubbings of English-language films, and appeared on Broadway at age 13. Her most famous role came in 1961, when she played Anita in the film version of “West Side Story.” The role earned Moreno a Best Supporting Actress Academy Award.

She is one of only a dozen performers to have won an Oscar, an Emmy, a Grammy and a Tony. She won a 2015 Lifetime Artistic Achievement Award from the Kennedy Center last month, and a Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2004, among many other awards.

Now in her eighties, Moreno is still active artistically. She published “Rita Moreno: A Memoir” in 2013, and performed Supreme Court Sonia Sotomayor’s memoir for the audiobook version. Late last year, she released her first all-Spanish album, “Una Vez Más.” She will also be featured in an upcoming reboot of the sitcom “One Day at a Time.” 


Photo by John Ferguson [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

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