Cristela finds the funny side of life
CRISTELA Alonzo was raised by a single mother in poverty. The family was so poor they had to squat in an abandoned diner until Alonzo was eight.
The comedian taught herself to speak English watching US sitcoms.
Today, at 36, she’s the first Latina to create, produce, write and star in her own network show, Cristela.
Alonzo (left) says she honed her sense of humour during her childhood.
“I had no idea we were poor when we were squatting because my Mum did such a great job at making us laugh at everything,” she says.
“I’ve learnt to handle everything through humour,” she says.
Cristela is an autobiographical take on her own life but the major difference to Alonzo’s own life is that fictional Cristela cops grief from her family for working as an unpaid intern for a law firm whereas in real life she was given the third degree for pursuing stand-up.
“I wanted to show how much of a sacrifice it is for someone who comes from a poor family to say, ‘Hey I have this great job where I’m being paid nothing, but trust me – it’s a good thing’.”
CRISTELA SUNDAY, 6.30PM, FOX8 By Andrew Fenton