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Writers & Photographers
Berlitz Summer Camp
by Michael Berick
Angels seem to hover around Roma Downey’s career. The actress, born in Northern Ireland but now living in Southern California, is best known for her role as an angel in the popular TV program Touched By An Angel. She has a new “angelic” project debuting this month that is aimed at preschoolers. Little Angels is a DVD series about angels who watch over twins Alex and Zoe. Downey talked with us about the show.
How did this Little Angels series come about, and what about the concept particularly resonated with you?
I was raised to believe in angels and was taught that they were always watching over me. It was comforting and reassuring as a child to feel the angels with me. Then for almost 10 years I starred on Touched By An Angel. While the story changed from week to week the message was always the same. It was about doing the right thing and sharing God’s love.
I wanted to be able to bring that same message of love and reassurance to young children, and Little Angels does just that. The series provides good, warm and wonderful instruction about life lessons and important learning concepts told through colorful animation. The “Little Angels” are painted on a mural on the ceiling of our 4-year-old twins’ nursery. They are the last thing the children see when they go to sleep at night and the first thing they see when they wake up in the morning.
When Mom and Dad aren’t around, the angels come to life and fly down to interact with the twins and share adventures along the way. They provide the kids with real practical learning skills, and they also teach important core family values such as being kind and sharing, being truthful and honest and showing gratitude and love.
Well, the three DVDs have their own themes, “Little Angels ABC’s,” “Little Angels 123’s” and “Little Angels Animals.” The story telling is broken down into shorter segments to appeal to the attention span of our young audience and each DVD has over 40 minutes of content. To round out the launch at this time I also have Little Angels musical CDs, Little Angels story books and even a Little Angels app available on iTunes.
This seems like a show that parents can watch with their children. Was that an important element of the show for you?
Some of the sweetest moments as a parent are sitting and sharing a movie together with your kids, cuddled up on the couch. The series is laced with humor that will give parents something to laugh at during these times as well. And all the music is so catchy and I know parents will be singing along in no time. Knowing your kids are learning valuable lessons while sharing good stories and compelling characters makes for such good shared entertainment and provides an opportunity to make memories with your child.
Viewing together also allows for good conversations with your little one and helps to really reinforce the lessons learned. I have an extra segment on the DVDs, which is a great tool designed for parents. It’s called “Little Life Lessons with Roma” and suggests different and fun ways to deepen the lessons learned with your preschooler.
Between Touched by an Angel and Little Angels, there are a lot of angels in your career. Who are some angels in your life?
Yes ... you can see the theme here! I have been blessed with many angels in my life along the way. I am so grateful for all the love and kindness I get from my husband and kids and my family and friends. One of the greatest blessings in my life has been my TBAA costar Della Reese, whose continuing friendship and love have been a true light of wisdom in my life. She has been a real angel to me.
Michael Berick is calendar editor of L.A. Parent.
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