Sense of Ownership 3 minute read

Ilda Mason, representing Panama at the highest level

Panamanian actress based in New York. She began her career in Panama doing musicals and winning the second season of Dancing with the Stars. She studied architecture at Universidad Santa María la Antigua.

With his father, Jorge Mason

What are your most treasured memories of the Panama Canal?

My hero, my dad, works at the Canal. And I have several moments that I cherish. I remember going with my school to Miraflores and they put an engineer’s helmet on me. I remember being at the reversion ceremony with my parents when I was 9 years old.

Also, my dad’s participation in promoting the approval of the referendum for the expansion in 2006, and that’s why I chose to make a model of the Third Set of Locks for school.

With Steven Spielberg

Why did you change from architecture to performing arts?

I started with ballet at a very young age. When I went to an international competition in Italy, I fell in love with its architecture; I remember how impressed I was by St. Peter’s Basilica. I told myself I wanted to know more about it. But I studied architecture as a plan b, because my love for the show was solidified.

What do you miss about Panama now that you live in the United States?

Not a place, but an element. I miss the rain.

Favorite Panamanian food

My mom’s macaroni and sausage.

Elizabeth Vargas

Book of the moment

Exhalation, by Ted Chiang.

Last movie you saw that you liked

Nope, by Jordan Peele. That’s the kind of movie I want to make.

What’s your superpower?

Being kind. The importance of making people feel seen.

When do they recognize Panama in you?

When I speak. And someone always comes out who has a cousin in Colon.

Favorite Panamanian festivity

The Mejorana Festival in Guararé, the land of my grandparents.

Panamanian artist that inspired you

Elizabeth Vargas, RIP. Theater actress, friend of my mom, who got me into theater. It was because of her that I knew I wanted to make it my profession.

Professional achievement

To have participated in West Side Story. Working with Steven Spielberg and seeing how he does things.

Role model in life

My dad for his patience and eloquence, and my mom for her fire.

Next challenge

I want to be in a television series.

Shocking fact

The amount of work it takes to put together a project. We only see the final product. And we tend to do that on everything. It’s hundreds and even thousands of hours of rehearsals.

Favorite Panamanian artist

I love the music of Samy and Sandra Sandoval.

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  1. Both of my parents were born in Panamá. Going there to secure rental on condo, and register as a Panamanian citizen. Looking forward to meeting you, friends, and family when I land in Panamá on 11/11/22 to 11/25/22.
    I will be staying at the Hampton Inn by Hilton, in Panamá City.

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