Rita Moreno

The Cardinal celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month!


Kayla Onn, Staff Writer

Rita Moreno is a Puerto Rican dancer, singer, and actor who was born, Rosa Dolores Alverío Marcano on December 11, 1931. She is the first Latina woman, and one of a few, to receive an “E.G.O.T.” certificate, which means she’s won an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony award. She was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2004 for her numerous contributions to the arts. She received a lifetime achievement award from the Screen Actors Guild in 2014. She has received numerous other honors, including the Presidential Medal of Freedom, which is the highest civilian honor bestowed by the United States. Her professional life has spanned more than seven decades. She’s also known for her part as Lydia Margarita del Carmen Inclán Maribona Leyte-Vidal de Riera in the 2017 adaptation of One Day at a Time.

Alverio moved to New York City with her mother after her parents divorced in 1935. Her mother eventually remarried. Later on, she took her stepfather’s surname, Moreno. She took dance classes as a child and later voiced American child stars in films aired in Spanish-speaking nations. She made her Broadway debut in Skydrift when she was 13 years old. She made her big-screen debut in the film So Young, So Bad in 1950. She was given the name Rosita Moreno at first, but she soon changed her name to Rita.  She was also known on the PBS series, The Electric Company, as she screamed the show’s opening line, “Hey, you guys!”  She is also best know for playing “Anita” in the 1961 film adaptation of the Broadway Musical West Side Story.