Ismael Cruz Cordova loved watching Sesame Street on television when he was growing up in Aguas Buenas, Puerto Rico. It was one of his favorite shows even though he only spoke Spanish. Now the 26-year-old will be part of the Sesame Street family.
Cordova will be playing the role of Armando or ”Mando” for short, when the show’s 44th season starts next Fall. He told Good Morning America “It’s such a dream come true, slash full circle. And my first experience with television and watching TV was in Puerto Rico, and I only spoke Spanish. I learned how to speak English watching this show.”
Cordova was chosen among hundreds of actors who tried out for the part last fall. That’s when Sesame Street held an open call to find a new Hispanic neighbor for the cast.
Sesame Street is also planning to have more of a Hispanic focus on the show. GMA reports Sesame Street will concentrate more on the Hispanic culture and heritage. Cordova adds “I think Sesame Street is a place of kids seeing themselves on the screen like it happened to me when I was growing up.”
Rebecca Aguilar is a multiple Emmy award-winning freelance reporter based in Dallas. She has 31 years in the business, including 27 in television news. She’s currently the VP of Online for the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, and the VP of Membership for the Fort Worth Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists.