I walk into The London in Midtown in full Eskimo get up. It’s chilly outside but the trek from Washington Heights is worth it. After all, I am here to chat up Christina Milian about her new show on E! Entertainment Television, “Christina Milian Turned Up.”
Her team ushers her into a room for her first interview of the evening. Donning jeans and a black leather jacket, she looks like the Latina next door – that’s beautiful, fashionable, and seemingly down to earth. And down to earth she is. After a brief wait, it’s my turn to interview the “Dip It Low” songstress, host, and actress.
Milian greets me with a warm hug and smile. An older woman sits beside her.
“Is this your mother?” I ask.
“No, it’s my Tia,” she responds, smiling bright while glancing at her aunt.
Christina’s love of family is obvious. It warms my heart, and I forget the brisk wind that cut my skin moments ago. I also now understand why she’s decided to star in a reality show that features her three sisters, mother, and daughter.
Her team begins to chat around us but Christina’s attention is solely on me. “Should we start?” I ask. She nods eagerly. I pull out my questions, hand her my recorder, and the interview begins.
SG: Do you feel a lot of pressure on the show, representing our culture, being that you’re one of the only Latinas on the E! network?
CM: Technically, I’m a little like, are we Cuban enough? But at the same time what’s special about being on E! is that it’s a very modern network and we are a very modern Cuban family. Some of us speak Spanish, some of us speak Spanglish; but I guarantee you our culture is deep rooted. You know, we’re constantly reminded of our culture through food, music, through family. Family is a strong part of us. My Tia, I don’t live here [NYC] but every time I’m out here I make sure that I see her. We go eat food at her house, you know, our Cubanness is very deep rooted. You’ll see it on the show. Of course I am nervous if we are “Cuban” enough, if people are going to judge that, but they’re going to do it anyway! It’s just who we are.
SG: As a role model to many Latinas, how do you wish to impact them via your show?
CM: I wish to impact them to show them that it’s ok to have your traditional values. Tradition is what keeps us grounded, and it keeps you humble and that’s what’s kept me here till this day. It’s also cool to teach your parents what’s happening in the new world, and it’s ok to teach each other to conform. I feel that also being Latina there’s a lot of guilt, there’s little things [we feel] guilty [about]. Read the rest on LOEXL.