Mariana Alagon talks honor of portraying the realities that Latinas face in today's workforce

October 25, 2018

Some say that the only limits that exist are those in our own minds. This has always been the case for talented actor, Mariana Alagon. For Alagon, the appeal to acting and performing has always drawn from the fact that her imagination is limitless and she is therefore able to morph herself into anyone or anything that she chooses. She thrives on the knowledge that it doesn't matter where she comes from or what she has been through, she will always be able to escape her own reality as she embraces that of the character she is playing. In turn, she hopes for her audiences to be able to escape their own realities and immerse themselves into the stories she tells. It is a job unlike any other and she cherishes every opportunity that she gets to surround herself with like minded creatives as she delves into engaging scripts, challenging characters, and most of all, unbounded possibilities. 

 

Throughout her career, Alagon has captivated audiences in films EnamorDados and Lola Still Dances. She is known for her determination in her field and devotes herself to becoming any character she is challenged with playing. Whether this involves field research or professional lessons, Alagon is constantly transforming herself and expanding her range to best represent the visions of the directors and writers she acts for. 

 

“I love the fact that acting is both universal and limitless. You can play anything or anyone you want because when we act, we use our imagination and imagination is limitless. No matter where you are from, how old you are, what you look like what you’re wearing — as long as you believe in your character, you can achieve anything,” Alagon said. 

 

Not only does Alagon enjoy the fact that as an actor, she gets to explore an endless amount of possibilities through the characters she portrays, she also aims to seize any and every opportunity to shed light on important societal issues. For instance, in Lola Still Dances, Alagon was fortunate enough to get to cast a new perspective on the devastating realities of human trafficking. Similarly, in the web series, Pinkslipped, the talented Latina actor had the opportunity to open the world’s eyes to many of the issues that Latin-American individuals face on a daily basis as they attempt to engage in the US workforce. 

 

Pinkslipped follows the life of three best friends living in Chicago, handling their careers and personal lives whilst coming to terms with the fact that they are greater than the sum of their stifling jobs, self-sabotage, and cultural stereotypes. The show casts an important light on what it is like to be Latina in the current US workforce and Alagon’s character, Xóchitl, battles an interesting contrast as she struggles to overcome barriers in a non-profit women’s organization that aims to help underprivileged women just like herself.

 

Being Latina herself, Alagon found the issues that the series tackles to be very close to her heart. She loved the idea of getting to channel her own experiences when playing Xóchitl and found the plot line even more enticing when she found out that the show was written by Jacqueline Priego, who plays herself as the lead. Acting alongside Priego and having undergone so many similar life experiences as her made the opportunity even more special for Alagon.

 

Above all else, she loved the fact that the storyline embraces the struggles, fears, and insecurities that almost all women face when attempting to balance their personal lives and their career ambitions. The series served as a reminder to her that her career is a platform to cast a unique lens on the realities that individuals experience around them on a daily basis. She hopes that her audiences will be able to step outside of themselves to imagine what it might be like to face the life circumstances that Xóchitl and so many others face today. Ultimately, she takes pride in knowing that she did not allow herself to constrain her imagination when playing Xóchitl and her performance is a reflection of her unparalleled determination to act in such a way that her audiences will not only enjoy, but find a way to relate to or understand.

 

To other young girls and boys, Latina or not, who aspire to find a career that they are truly passionate about in the same way that Alagon is, she had the following advice to offer:

 

“Work really hard on your training, but more than that, work on believing in yourself. Acting is a beautiful craft. The creative moments and the unique energy that you feel on set will be worth every single effort. I won’t lie and say that it is easy to remain confident, but it is crucial. Beyond that, understand that not everyone will like you and that is okay because deep down, you’ll know that you’re giving your heart to your craft and that is never something to apologize for.”

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