"I didn't know this for a long time but, I'm greatly admired by my own people. I didn't know this because we don't have a tradition of writing fan letters. That's not something we do. When I found out, just a few years ago, that Spanish Harlem practically went on fire when I got my Oscar, that windows were opening, almost like in 'West Side Story', I get goose bumps. People yelling, 'she got it! She did it!' It makes me want to cry."
About This Interview
In her over three-hour Archive interview, Rita Moreno talks about spending her early childhood in Puerto Rico before coming to the United States at the age of five. Ms. Moreno chronicles her early stage, film and radio work, all done before her television debut in 1952. Ms. Moreno speaks about her work on G.E. Theatre, Fireside Theatre, Climax, Matinee Theatre, Playhouse 90 and other live programs. She also speaks freely about her encounters with racism. Even after her many successes in theatre and film, including an Oscar win for West Side Story, she continued working in television as a guest star on many programs. She discusses how, in 1971, she began a five-year run as a regular on The Electric Company, a PBS children's program. She has continued working and talks about most recently having been a regular on HBO's drama series Oz. Marla Miller conducted the interview in San Francisco, CA on June 22, 2000.