People

Miami singer lands plum role; HGTV star wants to spend Thanksgiving with you

Soto
Soto

Azucar! Cuban singer Aymée Nuviola just landed the role of a lifetime: The Miami resident will play Celia Cruz in upcoming TV biopic, Fox Telecolombia announced.

Filming will start shortly on the show, which will be carried by Colombian television network RCN.

Nuviola will play Cruz as an adult, at the height of the salsa legend’s success until her death of brain cancer on July 16, 2003, at the age of 77 in New Jersey.

So how did Nuviola land the role? Being nominated for a Latin Grammy helped. She recently got the nod in the Best Tropical Album category for her 2014 album First Class to Havana. The ceremony is set for Nov. 20, airing on Univision.

Yes, she has even more cred. Born in Havana, Nuviola comes from a family of musicians that includes her sister Lourdes Nuviola, also a singer; her niece Paola Guanche, winner of Telemundo’s La Voz Kids contest; her brother, percussionist Alexander “Pupi’ Carriera, who has occasionally played in her band; and her cousin Luis Bofill, also a local musician.

Nuviola is also kind of a big deal on YouTube; she performed as part of a global rendition of Guantanamera; she recorded her snippet from the Cuba Ocho Art and Research Center on Calle Ocho in Miami. The video, which has drawn more than 470,000 views, was produced by the Los Angeles-based non-profit organization Playing for Change.

Nuviola actually crossed paths with Cruz years ago in Spain. They were introduced by the Dominican singer Johnny Ventura.

“I was 20 years old and I was stunned. Meeting her was something that will stay with me forever,” Nuviola told People en Español. “Celia just took off the earrings she was wearing and gave them to me. I gave her mine. It was an act of affection. She told me: ‘[Singing] is a difficult career,’ but she encouraged me.”

SARAH MORENO

KEY EVENT

It’s that time of the year again — Saks Fifth Avenue’s Key To The Cure is back.

The feel-good factor? This always posh event has helped to raise over $35 million in support of the Women’s Cancer Research Fund.

Saks has tapped one of its favorite brands to design a tee ($35) for the cause, with 100 percent of proceeds going directly to the fund. This year marks the first time they've created a unisex shirt designed by David Neville and Marcus Wainwright of Rag & Bone.

Mount Sinai Comprehensive Cancer Center and Saks Fifth Avenue Bal Harbour, along with Miami magazine, will host a kickoff party Oct. 15 from 6 to 9 p.m., with bites from local eateries as well as live beats and entertainment.

After the party, the charity shopping weekend continues through Oct. 19.

Tickets are $25; 305-674-2777.

MARIA TETTAMANTI

BROTHERLY LOVE

Zach Rance thinks he knows why he lost Big Brother 16, which wrapped last month.

“I like talking a lot,” the recent University of Florida graduate told the Palm Beach Post at a coming home party Sunday at Jupiter’s Aah Loi Sushi restaurant. “I wouldn’t change my game, but if I could do it again, I wouldn’t tell people my every game move. I wouldn’t talk as much. Yeah, I’m an idiot.”

Also at the bash: Rance’s ex housemate, photographer Victoria Rafaeli of Weston, who finished third in the CBS reality show (Rhode Island’s Derrick Levasseur took home the $500,000). Rafaeli told the paper she was going to use her newfound fame to possibly start a line of fragrance and/or hair extensions.

Conspicuously absent: Boca Raton resident Frankie Grande. He’s probably too busy pretending that it’s not a big deal being Ariana Grande’s half brother.

DREAM DATE

HGTV personality Sabrina Soto (The High/Low Project) wants to spend Thanksgiving with you. That is, if you have an inspirational story to tell about one of your favorite Turkey Days ever. If you bring a tear to Soto’s eye, the Miami native will come to your home for a nice visit, plus share entertaining tips and family recipes with you all.

Submit to the Woodbridge by Robert Mondavi Dream Thanksgiving contest by midnight Monday at woodbridgewines.com. The first 100 entries will receive an oven mitt, so that’s something.

MADELEINE MARR

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