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Ana Ortíz (born January 25, 1971) is an American actress and singer. She is a native of Manhattan, New York but was raised in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She is currently a regular on the ABC comedy-drama series Ugly Betty, in which she plays the title character's older sister, Hilda Suarez. The role earned her the ALMA Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in 2007.

Contents

* 1 Biography

* 2 Career

* 3 Personal life

* 4 References

* 5 External links

Biography

Ortiz is the daughter of Angel L. Ortiz, the first Puerto Rican city councilman in the Philadelphia City Council and an Irish American mother who works in Manhattan with autistic children and runs a soup kitchen.[1]

As a child, Ortiz originally dreamed of becoming a ballerina, and she studied ballet for eight years, until the pain of dancing en pointe forced her to pursue a different artistic discipline, prompting her to pursue a career outside of the world of ballet.

Switching to singing, Ortiz attended the Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts (the school of Fame) in New York City and later the University of the Arts in Philadelphia before making her professional stage debut in a regional theater production of "Dangerous Liaisons." Her additional stage credits include portraying Chrissy in a European touring production of Hair, regional theater productions such as "Dog Lady and the Cuban Swimmer" and in the South Coast Repertory Theater's production of "References to Salvador Dalí Make Me Hot."

After joining LAByrinth Theatre Company [2], she appeared off-Broadway in "In Arabia, We'd All Be Kings," which also co-starred Puerto Rican actress Liza Colón-Zayas and was directed by Academy Award-winning actor Philip Seymour Hoffman and named one of the 10-best plays of 1999 by the magazine Time Out New York.

Career

On television, Ortiz's resume includes NYPD Blue, Dr. Quinn: Medicine Woman, Commander In Chief, Boston Legal, ER, The New Adventures of Old Christine, Over There, her first full-time series role, Kristin and Everybody Loves Raymond. Ortiz also had a guest starring role on Army Wives during its second season as a waitress named Sandi[3].

In addition to her current gig on Ugly Betty she is also active in films, which include starring roles King of L.A. and Tortilla Heaven.

Ortiz is also one of two Philadelphians who are regulars on Ugly Betty, the other being Mark Indelicato, who plays her son Justin. Another connection to the city is co-star Becki Newton (who plays Amanda Tanen), who graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.

Originally, Ortiz had auditioned for the Betty Suarez role, but it went to Ferrera instead. Ortiz told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette "I was super plain. I just put on some glasses and kept my hair kind of flat and layered on the clothing," Ortiz told the Post-Gazette's Patricia Sheridan, describing what she wore when she was auditioning for the role of Betty. "My objective was mainly to go in there and give a really good audition because I was so excited about the project," she explained. "I just wanted them to remember me, so that I could be involved in the future." Which eventually led to Ortiz landing the Hilda Suarez role.[4]

Personal life

Ortiz used to live in Los Angeles, California, but recently moved to Dumbo in New York City. In her spare time she enjoys hiking, horseback riding, softball, water sports, and writes poetry. She married musician Noah Lebenzon on June 9, 2007 in Rincón, Puerto Rico.

In a recent interview for People Magazine, Ana Ortiz stated that she and her husband recently became vegetarians.

Ortiz is also active in raising awareness against domestic abuse, citing her own experiences when she was in her 20s and involved in a romantic relationship that turned physically abusive. In a article for USA Today, Ortiz notes that the final scene from the "Ugly Betty" episode How Betty Got Her Grieve Back in which Hilda sat on her bed and staring at the bathroom after realizing that Santos had died was drawn from that experience: "I used some of that subconsciously...It's something that is always with me."

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