Paola Poucel is an actress, singer, and voiceover artist and a graduate of the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in New York City. This weekend, she will present two performances of The Colors of Frida (Los Colores de Frida) by at Flushing Town Hall.
This is a bilingual, one-woman family performance about the great Mexican painter Frida Kahlo, which combines storytelling, music, visual arts, puppets and audience participation. This performance – at 10 AM and Noon – takes audiences through her trials, tribulations and successes, which propelled her to be considered one of the most important artists of the 20th century. It’s perfect for children age 6 years old and up.
We asked Paola about the show and what people can expect!
What can an audience expect to experience at your event?
They’ll see Frida Kahlo telling her story with the help of music, finger puppets and Caimito her pet monkey.
Tell us about you – how you started as a performer?
Truly, I started as a performer singing Disney songs with my sisters and doing small shows for my parents… LOL! Professionally I started performing in my hometown of Puebla, Mexico with the Musical Theater group of my college. Then I was part of the State Theater Company and Teatrofilia a wonderful independent theater group. However, I decided to pursue musical theater here to New York and I graduated from the American Musical and Dramatic Academy (AMDA). After graduation I started working with Teatro SEA and as a voice over artist with Nickelodeon in shows like Dora the Explorer and Dora and Friends. I’ve been also the official voice of various brands for the Hispanic Market.
Where did you grow up / where do you live?
I grew up in Puebla, Mexico where I also met my husband. We moved to New York in 2005, me to study Musical Theatre while my husband got an MFA in Filmmaking from Columbia University. We got married here and now we are the proud parents of a little New Yorker. We’ve been living in Harlem for the past 7 years.
What do you hope audiences discover at your event?
As a Mexican a feel deeply honored to be able to tell Frida’ story. I hope kids can discover Frida Kahlo as a revolutionary, a strong woman and artist who overcome every situation life threw at her. It was her art what basically saved her. Her life story and genius will live forever through her paintings.
What does Flushing Town Hall mean to you?
This is my second show in Flushing Town Hall. A couple of years ago we presented Goldilocks and the 3 Bears and I can never forget the beautiful space and the wonderful multicultural audience. I feel very fortunate to comeback and being able to bring Frida to this amazing audience.
What is on the horizon for you?
I’ll keep touring with SEA and its various productions. We have a show of The 3 Lil Pigscoming up and the 1st International Fringe Puppet Festival from August 8th to August 12th! A week celebrating diversity, puppetry and a cultural exchange of international theater arts. For more information, please go to puppetfringenyc.com. I also have a couple of productions coming up in the Fall and recordings for audiobooks. For more information please go to my facebook page and/or my website.
What else do you want us to know about you!?
I sing all day! My kid and I love to make up songs and randomly sing them in the subway, hehehe! I love doing children’s theater because I truly believe in art as an essential part for a well rounded education. Even if a kid doesn’t consider himself creative, I know art can help him to stop all anxieties and discover his true-self in a safe environment.
I also think art is a catalyst for change and I’ve been honored to collaborate with a wonderful theater company called “Houses on the Moon” whose motto is “the unheard voice… amplified”. The work they do is simply amazing. They believe in the power of theater to transform lives and instill empathy. I was part of a wonderful documentary play called “De Novo” about the real deportation case of an undocumented Guatemalan kid. For more information, go to housesonthemoon.org.