A Cuban grandmother from Hialeah teaches magic in Spanglish at Hogwarts, the school attended by young wizards like Harry Potter. She even manages to turn the reviled professor Severus Snape into a box of Goya seasoning.
The character is played by Cuban-American actress Jenny Lorenzo in the video “If your Cuban abuela were a professor at Hogwarts,” which she posted on her YouTube channel last week. As of June 4, it has more than 100,000 views.
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“I spent two days filming the video in Los Angeles with several friends who are also from Miami. The character is a tribute to my Cuban grandmother who died two years ago,” Lorenzo told El Nuevo Herald in a telephone interview.
The actress and video producer, born in Miami, is a fan of the Harry Potter novels which is why she decided that put her character Abuela in British author J. K. Rowling’s Potterverse, while providing a dose of Latin culture and humor.
With her black hat and witch dress, Abuela welcomes the students to her “Conocimientos 101″ class, where she teaches them the “magic effect of Vivaporrú,” to levitate flip flops and gives them “practical” advice, like never leave your purse on the floor (because you will lose all your money).
She claims to have a Bachelor’s Degree in the evil eye from Hialeah, “where the old women are envious.”
Abuela stars in several of Lorenzo’s videos like “Who needs AMAZON ALEXA when you have ABUELA?” and “When Abuela meets The Bride.”
“Being a Cuban-American born and raised in Miami means that I was surrounded by enough material for my entire life. And for me, family is of the utmost importance and if it were not for them, I would not be what I am today. Creating this content allows me to share a part of my life, my childhood and my family with the world. And seeing other people relate to my experiences is incredible, “says Lorenzo on her website http://www.jennylorenzo.com.
Lorenzo wanted to be a comedian since she was a child and regularly performed in the living room of her grandparents’ house in Miami. Later, she studied acting, theater and film production.
She has posted her videos on sites like Aggressive Comix, BuzzFeed and We Are Mitú, and created her own YouTube channel with 97,700 followers and where she publishes “all things geek, Latin comedy and everything Abuela.”
She decided to move to Los Angeles “for the opportunity to produce my own television show and to represent all Latinos, to combine both worlds,” she told the Nuevo Herald.
Her goal is to unite people and educate others about “our traditions, beliefs, superstitions, dishes, etc. through comedy and family nostalgia.”
Her fame on Youtube has led her to work for important brands such as Nascar Latino, Denny’s and Universal Studios in Orlando, where in a recent video, Abuela gave her commentary about the attractions in her own particular Cuban style.