interview by MAREK BARTEK

Actor Patrick Criado took his first acting steps at the age of 10, before being revealed to the public thanks to his role in the series “Red Eagle”. After numerous cinematic and televised roles, he is back with a role in “Las Noches de Tefía”, which earned him a Premio Ondas award for his performance.

First of all, congratulations on winning the Premio Ondas for your role in ‘Las Noches de Tefía’. How did it feel to receive such a prestigious award? 

I am extremely happy to have received the Premio Ondas because I feel it is a recognition for the entire series. It acknowledges the hard work we all put in and I hope it has helped give the series more visibility, as it truly deserves to be seen. 

‘Las Noches de Tefía’ has received significant international acclaim. What do you think resonates most with audiences worldwide about this series? For those who might’ve not seen ‘Las Noches de Tefía’, how would you describe the series to? 

I believe the series has gained international recognition because it is deeply local and original. It delves into Spanish culture, exploring who we are as Spaniards and where we come from. This unique perspective has resonated with audiences worldwide because it offers a glimpse into a part of Spanish history. 

Can you share some memorable experiences or challenges you faced while working on ‘Las Noches de Tefía’? 

One of the biggest challenges we faced was finding the right tone for the series. It was a complex balance because the series blends drama and comedy, and we had to find the middle ground to tell the story effectively. We also did extensive rehearsals, which helped us establish the tone. Another significant challenge was losing weight. Everyone lost as much as they could. Personally, I lost 11 kilos and it was tough to resist eating, especially since we were filming in the Canary Islands where the food is fantastic. 

You’re also set to release ‘La Virgen Roja’ by Paula Ortíz, which tells the story of Spain’s first feminist who joined the Socialist Party. Can you tell us more about your role in this powerful film? 

In ‘La Virgen Roja’, I play the character of Abel Velilla, a member of the Socialist Party who approaches Hildegart to ask her to make a speech for the party. He is a revolutionary, a well-read person with a great desire to change the world. He eventually falls in love with Hildegart and they develop a romantic relationship. 

What was it like working with Najwa Nimri on ‘La Virgen Roja’, and how did you prepare for such a historically significant role? 

Working with Najwa was like receiving a gift. Her character is very complex and it was fascinating, enriching, and inspiring to watch her work and share moments with her. For this film, we rehearsed extensively, pieced together the sequences and read a lot about various political issues, as well as the cultural and socio-political context of the time. This helped us understand what we wanted to convey and even modify parts of the script to enrich the film, making it a very fruitful process. 

Both ‘Las Noches de Tefía’ and ‘La Virgen Roja’ deal with important historical and social themes. How do you approach roles that have such profound cultural and historical significance? Reflecting on your journey so far, what have been some of the key lessons or experiences that have shaped you as an actor? 

I believe you learn something new with every project. Each role feels like you’re working for the first time and that’s one of the most beautiful aspects of my job, you never stop learning. In life, the lessons and experiences we accumulate, often unconsciously, are reflected in the characters we portray. These experiences enrich the actor. Personally, I try to live life to the fullest and approach each job as if it were my first.

How has winning the Premio Ondas impacted your career, and what advice would you give to aspiring actors looking to achieve similar recognition? 

I think awards like the Goya or the Ondas don’t necessarily secure more work for us. They are beautiful moments to be enjoyed, recognitions of the work we’ve done. I dedicated my award to everyone involved in the series because it belongs to them. What advice would I give? Well, it’s hard to put into words because there are so many things you learn along the way. For me, it’s important to learn to be present, to observe and to look at life from different perspectives to understand scripts and capture reality, since you’ll be portraying it through your eyes. Training is also crucial. Having spaces to rehearse and practice, and of course, daring to fail. 

talent PATRICK CRIADO @patrick.criado 

photo & retouch CARLOS VILLAREJO @carlosvillarejo 

photo assistant CESCO RODRIGUEZ Cesco Rodriguez @cescorodriguez 

sylist ANTOINELLA @antoinella 

stylist assistant INÈS MANZANO @i.manzanno

make-up & hair Gema Bajo 

producer JULIA NAVARRO @jnjulianavarro & PEDRO CASTRO @pitiburatos