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Latino USA


Latino USA offers insight into the lived experiences of Latino communities and is a window on the current and merging cultural, political and social ideas impacting Latinos and the nation.

Latino USA offers insight into the lived experiences of Latino communities and is a window on the current and merging cultural, political and social ideas impacting Latinos and the nation.


New York, NY




Latino USA offers insight into the lived experiences of Latino communities and is a window on the current and merging cultural, political and social ideas impacting Latinos and the nation.






361 West 125th Street Fourth Floor New York, NY 10027 646-571-1220



There are two kinds of immigrants: the ones who don’t look back and the ones who spend their lives looking back. Miguel Macias has been both over the course of his life. “Limbo” follows Miguel’s migration journey after moving to the United States from Spain in 2001, when he was 25 years old. As we learn about the struggles that come with remaining connected to the homeland, and the life-long dilemma of whether to return one day, “Limbo” dives into the ways in which migration and depression...


Bodies Without Limits: Tattooing With Tamara Santibañez

If you’re looking for a sign to go get that tattoo you’ve been dreaming of — well, this is it. Tattoo and multimedia artist Tamara Santibañez believes that tattooing can work for anyone who wants it. The art form has existed for thousands of years, and it’s more than a tool for creative expression. In their book, “Could this be Magic? Tattooing as Liberation Work,” Tamara makes the case that tattooing holds deep meaning and even deeper potential: tattoos are a way to reclaim personal and...


Genias in Music: Violeta Parra

Violeta Parra changed music in her native Chile and beyond. She is known as the “Mother of La Nueva Canción,” a political folk music movement that swept Latin America in the late 1960s. Most people might have heard a version of her masterpiece “Gracias a la vida,” which has been covered countless times across the world. But behind that anthem of gratitude there is a deeply existential and complex musician who presented love as an ethical principle in her songs, even when her own life was...


Growing Up With The Tiarras

The Tiarras have been playing together since they were just little girls, but they’ve been sisters forever. The band is arguably best known for writing and performing catchy tunes that dive into themes of Latina empowerment, self-love and they’re not afraid to get political. On this episode of Latino USA, these hermanas tell us more about the role sisterhood plays in their creative process and why they hope their art and journey inspires future generations of Latinos and Latinas.


Disinformation and Misinformation

To kick off Latino USA's 2022 election cycle coverage, Maria Hinojosa and Julio Ricardo Varela are joined by Maria Teresa Kumar, founding president and CEO of Voto Latino, and Jaime Longoria, manager of research and training for the Disinfo Defense League at Media Democracy Fund for a conversation about misinformation and disinformation in the Latino community. They get into who is behind these disinformation campaigns, their impact on communities and the organizing that is being done to...


Portrait Of: Elizabeth Acevedo

Elizabeth Acevedo is a Dominican-American poet and award-winning author. Her debut young adult novel "The Poet X" made the New York Times bestseller list in 2018. With the Fire on High —Acevedo’s second novel— tells the story of an Afro-Latina who dreams of becoming a chef. We sit down with Elizabeth Acevedo to talk about how storytelling became an important part of her life, her identity, and the impact of her success. This episode was originally broadcast on May 28, 2019.


A Child Lost in Translation

The following Latino USA story was originally broadcast on May 31, 2019. It was also the recipient of a 2020 Gracie Award from the the Alliance for Women in Media. Huntsville, Alabama has a small, but growing Latino population. It's where Teresa Matías, a single working immigrant mother from Guatemala, lived with five sons. In 2015, Teresa joined a local Catholic church, baptized her sons and found them godparents. The godparents of her youngest son would take a special liking to him....


New Hope for Melissa Lucio

Latino USA provides an update to a story we recently did about Melissa Lucio, the first Latina on death row in Texas.


Doris Anahi Muñoz Chooses Herself

Doris Anahi Muñoz always sang. In fact, singing was her first career choice. But reality hit when she realized in her teenage years that she had to secure a career so that she could provide for her undocumented parents. Her dream of becoming a singer came to a halt. Instead, she got involved in the music industry from behind the scenes and became very successful: at 23 years old, she founded her own music management company representing indie Latino emerging artists and launched a series of...


Chisme: An Ancestral Language

When Elisa Baena and Monica Morales-García first met on their first day as Latino USA fellows, they realized they were speaking a shared language — an ancestral tongue. They were chismeando! Chisme is the Spanish word for gossip. It happens when you speak about someone in their absence, sharing information that’s supposed to be private and not necessarily factual. In this episode of Latino USA, Elisa and Monica travel deep into a chismosa’s universe. They talk to professional chismosas...


The Story Not Told With Dahlma Llanos-Figueroa

Dahlma Llanos-Figueroa grew up listening to the stories of her rural Afro Puerto Rican community of Puerto Rico, but when she moved to New York, she realized that not everybody had access to this kind of storytelling. After a long career as school teacher and librarian, Dahlma realized that she needed to write the stories her mostly Dominican and Puerto Rican students in the Bronx were missing. Dahlma shares how she found her writing voice and gives us a sneak peak of her new novel, A Woman...


Genias in Music: La Lupe

La Lupe was a legendary Afro-Cuban singer who was once known as the “Queen of Latin Soul.” She was one of the top performers in Havana cabarets amid the Cuban Revolution and became a legendary figure in New York after fleeing Cuba. She worked with some of Latin music’s biggest names, including Tito Puente, and was known for explosive boleros like “Qué Te Pedí” and “La Tirana.” By the mid-1970s, Lupe’s label was acquired by Fania Records and she was pushed aside. She earned the reputation of...


Silvana Estrada Finds Freedom in Music

Silvana Estrada has spent her entire life surrounded by the sounds of music: the tuning of a violin, the strumming and plucking of guitar strings, the bowing of a big-bellied double bass. The 24-year-old singer and composer grew up in the mountains of Veracruz, Mexico. Music was a way for Silvana to connect with the world around her. “Marchita” —written and recorded entirely in Spanish— draws from Silvana’s jazz background and the folkloric Mexican music she grew up with. The album...


Cristina Ibarra and Alex Rivera, Through Each Other’s Eyes

Independent filmmakers Cristina Ibarra and Alex Rivera have won many awards throughout their careers, but in 2021 they made history: they became the first married couple to each receive the MacArthur Genius Grant at the same time. In an intimate conversation, Cristina and Alex take us through their journey as filmmakers—from their early experimental student films and developing their craft, to their directorial collaboration in the hybrid film The Infiltrators, which won the audience award...


Being Seen on Screen

Latino USA presents a recent episode of Latino Rebels Radio that focuses on media representation in our community. Host Julio Ricardo Varela welcomes Stacie de Armas, the Senior VP of Strategic Initiatives & Consumer Engagement for Nielsen, to explain what Latino representation looks like in media, what audiences want and what needs to be done for more diverse programming. To subscribe to Latino Rebels Radio, which is also produced by Futuro Media, click here.



Rodeo —the Spanish word for “rounding up”— is a multi-million dollar sport in the United States, but it’s rooted in the riding, roping, and cattle ranching skills brought by Mexican cowboys to the Southwest hundreds of years ago. Today, most of the top professional rodeo athletes are white, but if you take a closer look, there are a large number of Mexican-American cowboys who live and breathe the sport. In this episode from our archives, Latino USA visits the Tucson Rodeo, also known as La...


We Are Here: Mapping Indigenous Migrant Languages

For years, the U.S. Census has undercounted Indigenous migrants, grouping them under the label of “Hispanic” or “Latinos.” This is a problem for communities whose first language is not Spanish or English, but Zapotec, Chinantec, K’iché or any of the various Indigenous languages that are being spoken across the country today. The Indigenous, women-led organization Comunidades Indígenas en Liderazgo, or CIELO, decided to start counting their own community, and put themselves on the map of Los...


The Race to Save Melissa Lucio

On April 27, 2022, Melissa Lucio could become the first Latina sentenced to death to be executed in Texas. In 2008, Melissa was convicted for the death of her two-year old daughter Mariah Alvarez. However, her family and others believe Melissa is innocent and argue that she did not have an adequate defense. In fact, in 2019, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals seemed inclined to give Melissa another chance and opened the door for the possibility of a new trial, but the state of Texas...


Xochitl Gonzalez and the Art of Traversing Worlds

On the night of the presidential elections in 2016, Xochitl Gonzalez was at the Javits Center in New York City attending an event in support of Hillary Clinton’s presidential nomination. She was talking to “other very liberal, Democratic volunteers” when the subject of Puerto Rico came up. Xochitl, born and raised into a Nuyorican family, was stunned and frustrated when she realized that nobody knew anything about the injustices her family’s ancestral home had gone through. It was then...


Genias in Music: Maria Grever

In 1916, Maria Grever set foot in New York City with her two children in tow. She was a Mexican composer whose husband allegedly sent her to the city to escape political turmoil amidst the Mexican Revolution. But Maria Grever wasn’t just any composer. She composed anywhere from 800 to 1,000 songs spanning from the early 1920s until her death in 1951. She composed numerous top charting hits, scored for the big movie houses, wrote operas and Broadway musicals, yet many have never heard her...