Monika Sanchez cover
Monika Sanchez cover | Foto: Monika Sanchez cover

Monika Sanchez: Telenovela’s Most Favorite Antagonist

Por: Karen Limón

29, November, 2021 en Latina Attitude

Born in Mexico to a diplomat father, the actress Ms Monika Sanchez naturally had a definite advantage in understanding and navigating the vagaries of public life through her exposure to the world of foreign service. Like many in Mexico, her ancestors, namely her grandparents, hail all the way from peninsular Spain. However, her great grandfather, interestingly enough, is Italian and Ms Sanchez herself was raised in Italy, thus explains her native fluency in the Italian language. Living the life of a family in the diplomatic world, she has typically resided in many places, namely Spain, Italy, Miami, Puerto Rico and of course Mexico.

Her first exposure to acting was in Miami as a child. But it wasn’t until much later, as a college student in Mexico, that she began seriously pursuing the acting profession. Surrounded by books (her father being a writer as well as a diplomat), the arts, poetry, during her formative years, it was unsurprisingly a natural progression for her to gravitate to yet another art form, and in her case it was the art of acting, onstage as well as in front of the camera. Eventually, television beckoned, in this case Univision, an American Spanish-language broadcast television network serving Hispanic and Latin Americans, and with it several roles in the popular “telenovelas”, or what we call “soap opera” in Northern America. The role that most defined her was that of an antagonist. In fact, she is the Spanish-speaking world’s most favorite antagonist.

Monika Sanchez wearing a black dress
Monika Sanchez wearing a black dress

She demonstrates some of her most skillfully acted antagonist roles in popular soaps like Pueblo Chico, Infierno Grande (1997) where she landed her first real break, and many more television roles to follow in telenovelas like El Diaro De Daniela (1998) and Laberintos de Pasion (1999). Her unique rendition of a villain, with an interesting mix of sweetness and seduction, was recognized by Mexican television critics and was thus awarded “best villain of the year 2000”. She then proceeded to explore her versatility as an actress, honing her craft by taking on roles other than that of villain, portraying the role of a fragile woman in the novela Salome (2002), then on to another role in La Otra (2003), then moving on to Apuesta por un Amor (2005), portraying the enchanting role of “La Mariposa” (butterfly). She has studied in prestigious acting schools like Marger Harber in LA and even landed the job as a host for the TV show Viva La Familia in the US. Many more roles and acting jobs followed, naming a few like Amores Verdaderos, Libre para Amarte, La Gata and just recently Tres Veces Ana. The impact of these telenovelas cannot be emphasized enough in the global sense. Translated in many different languages, the reach spans from Europe to Asia and enjoys a popularity that puts your popular American TV series to shame.

Her experience does not quite end in television however. She has also stepped into several roles in the big screen, making appearances in many movie productions here and abroad. She has appeared in films like “En el Aire” (1992), and “La Hija del Canibal” (2003), short films like “Un Dia de Suerte” and “Malinche” (2009), “Juan Diego”, a Spain production, “La Senora Elegante” in the US, and “Heroes de la Comunidad” (2014). Moreover, like many versatile actresses, she is just as comfortable on theatre, finding great success in various stage productions, notably “Mi quinto Amor” and “Bajo las Sabanas”. She has been rewarded for her wonderful performance in the stage production “Revelacion Juvenil del Ano 2000”. She hopes to expand her acting genre by crossing over to Hollywood and a different language, and a different audience, specifically the American audience. She keeps herself open to different opportunities that might come her way.

Having had the pleasure of meeting and chatting with the beautiful Ms Sanchez, it was not difficult to see how she defines the role of an antagonist. With her deep, sultry, and sensual eyes, she gazes at you with the frank look of a confident and strong woman. Although her demeanor is nothing but kind and gracious in person, she can definitely turn on those piercing eyes on you, flashing with passion and fire, at a moment’s notice. But most importantly, she possesses a very strong screen presence, a much sought-after quality in the world of TV and big screen acting. All these qualities add up to a strong, cohesive and complete package, that appeals very much to the audience. When asked who she credits as the most influential persons in her life, specially in her career, she, without hesitation points out to her very supportive parents, most specially her father, who she considers her very first teacher. She also acknowledges her directors, naming one in particular, Sergio Jimenez, a well known actor and director in Mexico.

Monika Sanchez wearing a green dress
Monika Sanchez wearing a green dress

Today, women are as multi-faceted as they come and Ms Sanchez is no exception. Like most women who seriously pursue their careers, she has acquired the ability to balance both career and motherhood with a deft skill that can only be envied by men. Often, the ability to balance both very important and all consuming vocations successfully does not occur naturally. But, whether in-born or learned, one thing is quite imminent, these skills are indispensable if, as a woman, you want to give your best and succeed. Ms Monika Sanchez believes in cultivating several qualities that are important to her as a mother and a serious actress. Good organizational skills comes first in her list. She cannot stress this enough. To pursue an acting career and still be a good mother to her children, time management is key. To manage one’s time successfully, one has to be organized. Ms Sanchez also believes in choosing the right life partner, a supportive husband or mate, who respects her identity and her chosen profession. Claiming family as her priority, she nevertheless, quickly points out that professionalism is paramount in her work.

Well respected and admired in her field of work, well loved and cherished by her viewing audience, Ms Monika Sanchez maintains a well grounded and pragmatic attitude towards her profession and her life in general. Being a naturally passionate human being, she lives life intensely, always giving one hundred percent of herself to both family and work. Integrity as her backbone, once she decides to be your friend, she will remain a loyal friend. As she goes through the different stages in her life, she hopes to take on more challenging roles as an actress, perhaps even crossing over to other languages, given her linguistic abilities. She wishes to remain on track in her career, looking out for good roles to come her way, and in the process grow as a person. She will always have a special place in her heart for her viewing audience, specially those loyal to her telenovelas. She also sees more telenovelas or soap operas in her future, but she is also cognizant and open to many different opportunities that may come her way.