Orange Is the New Black is a groundbreaking series by many standards. Not only are they tackling tough issues like gender, feminism, and the prison system, but they’re also employing a ton of new actresses. One such star is Dascha Polanco, who plays Dayanara Diaz.
We love Dayanara and her relationship with security guard John Bennett (Matt McGorry), but many fans don’t know anything about the actress herself. Luckily, we’ve got some interesting facts that you definitely need to know!
She’s new to the game. Dascha’s first big-time acting gig was playing a character named Estella in one episode of Unforgettable back in 2011. Since then she’s only had 3 other roles, including Orange Is the New Black.
She’s got a hubby-to-be and three kids. Dascha revealed to The Huffington Post that she’s engaged to a “good-hearted man.” They met at the Dominican Day parade and he supports her. And while the actress has a “tricky” relationship with her family, she says she’s got her man and three kids to keep her company.
She’s interested in healthcare. Dascha is so new to the acting game that when she first auditioned for the role of Dayanara she showed up in scrubs, she told HuffPo. She also had to “shift things around” in her nursing school schedule to make it to the callback. Before discovering fame, she “managed an instrument room at a hospital in the Bronx.” How coll!
She’s super smart. Not only was she in nursing school, this chick has a bachelor’s degree in psychology. She admits that some of her favorite subjects were organic chemistry and forensic psychology. Not only that, but Dascha revealed that she wanted to be a chemist in the fragrance world. “I am obsessed with perfumes and I think I have a great nose for that,” she told HuffPo.
She’s not afraid to speak her mind. Dascha spoke to The Cut about racial profiling and she’s basically not going to put up with it. “Yeah, I’ve been followed [in stores], I’m not gonna lie,” Dascha told the site. “I’ve been mistreated, of course, but when I’m followed, I tell ‘em straight up, ‘Hi, I’m not gonna take anything, but if you need me to, then you can help me with it.’” Preach!