Hollywood has its own glitzy awards shows, but we’re no slouches in that department. The red carpet will be hot stuff Thursday night when Univision’s 10th annual Premios Juventud rolls back into town at the BankUnited Center. The theme is “beach bash” so maybe we’ll finally get to see Pitbull, who has five nominations, out of his white suit and into a Speedo (OK, doubt that). We spoke to pre-show co hosts, fashion expert Rodner Figueroa and El Gordo y La Flaca’s Carlos Calderon about what to expect.
What makes this annual show so intriguing?
RF: Miami has summer weather all year round and is a young, vibrant city. It’s only fitting that we celebrate the youngsters of the season in the city that best represents both.
CC: I think [PJ] gives Miami the sense of being the capital of Latin entertainment and youth. I don’t think of any other city when I think of Latin youth better than Miami. For us, for the people who live here, having this awards show here is more than an honor, it’s a privilege. We get to party with everybody from all over the United States and the world. We show what we are made of, and it’s a lot of fun.
How will the red carpet be transformed?
RF: Like a boardwalk — with sand, surfboards, towels and the like. It will look like summer on the carpet.
CC: There is going to be everything from girls in bikinis to surfboards. I know the only thing missing for a real Miami party would be pulled pork! But other than that, it’s going to be very hot, very beach-y, very musical. I have never seen anything like it in the years I’ve been here.
Whom are you looking forward to seeing?
RF: Jennifer Lopez is one of my favorite artists because of her ability to transform herself into endless looks that consist of sexy, chic and glamorous. I adore Paulina Rubio’s energy, she is fun and enjoyable on stage. Ricky Martin never ceases to amaze me. He’s a great showman with a powerful message. Also Marc Anthony, because of his powerful voice and his great performances. I could continue, but the list would never end. Every artist has something different to offer.
CC: I am particularly curious about Yandel without Wisin, who for me are the greatest reggaetoneros and probably the greatest hip-hop artists from Latin America. I can’t wait to see what he’s doing without the strength of Wisin, because Yandel is incredibly talented too. It’s also interesting to see how Thalia is going to make my soul melt this time.
What do you think of some of the up-and-comers?
CC: I would like to get to know them better, the young ones, because they are artists that are not coming from record companies; they’re pretty much self-made. Some of them have support from other artists. It gives you an idea of how the music industry has been changing. The idea is that they mix their music with all kinds of sounds: banda with ranchero, pop with cumbia, electronica with Aztec sounds. So it’s very cool to see what’s going on with them as a generation. The so-called millennials understand their music.
Any advice on battling the heat?
RF: Ladies can tackle the high temperatures by sporting short shorts, light fabrics like cotton or linen and wearing a pair of beautifully studded sandals.
CC: Fortunately, for me, this year we are going to have a tent with A.C. I can tell you that in previous years I almost fainted a couple of times, and the only way to battle that is preparing yourself, so this year I will not be taken by surprise. Last year one of the air conditioners broke down, and it was horrible, so this year I am running every day on the beach with the sun out so I can build some strength against that Miami heat! But it’s always fun to see the artists melting.
What are you guys wearing?
RF: For the first time in my life I didn’t have my outfit ready a week prior to the red carpet. My mom had emergency surgery for appendicitis and my PJs are on the back burner, as you would imagine. Mom comes before fashion.
CC: I wanted to wear shorts, but they told me no because it makes me look short [laughs]. I guess that’s why they call them shorts. Rodner, our fashionista, hasn’t really given me any tips. I guess I’ll just go to South Beach and see what people are wearing and take ideas from there. It’s a good thing that it’s a beach party, I don’t have to think too much.
Who is your favorite celeb?
RF: Madonna! She’s such an icon. I’ve seen her countless times in concerts, but I have never met her personally. She’s unique, original, daring, honest and tells it like it is. Qualities that I admire! Plus I grew up in Venezuela fantasizing about meeting her one day. And I’m sure it will happen sooner or later.
CC: I love Pitbull. If I could be born again, I would be born Pitbull. He’s not only very talented, he’s hardworking, nice, cool to talk to, and he makes you feel good. When you’re a reporter or an entertainment guy like myself, approaching someone that has been growing so much and still remembers the first time he saw you and compliments you on your appearance that particular day, that’s a star.