María Canals-Barrera

by ethnic on November 16, 2008

Birth Name: María Pilar Canals

Place of Birth: Miami, Florida, U.S.

Date of Birth: September 28, 1966

Ethnicity: Cuban [Catalan, possibly other]

María Canals-Barrera, also known as María Canals, is an American actress. She played Theresa on the show Wizards of Waverly Place. She is married to actor David Barrera.

María’s parents are Cuban. She has said that she is proud of her Cuban background, and is able to speak Spanish. She has also stated that she is of Catalan descent.

Photo by kathclick/

{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

neiltennant June 28, 2018 at 7:09 am

she looks like a hispanic latina

means : White (spanish) + american indian + probably little african

this woman has played always ethnic roles. and all roles where cuban, puerto rican or mexican roles beginning with 21 JUMP STREET(1990) to BIG BANG THEORY where she played an immigrant who cleans and raj fell in love with her

Daron July 24, 2017 at 2:20 pm

Catalan people are 100% European. They have no Arab ancestry in them. Plus Catalans live in Northern Spain. Arab Muslims lived in southern Spain up until the 17th century when they were ethnicity cleansed. Spain eradicated 99% of there Muslim population at that time.

neiltennant June 28, 2018 at 7:11 am

she is not just catalan

if she were just catalan or just spanish she would look more pale and she would play roles without ethnic footnote

on the other hand she always had played ethnic roles

stlucas March 25, 2017 at 12:44 pm
Hope Moretti June 30, 2012 at 3:59 pm

I knew this cus today i was watching wizards of weverly place and she spoke spanish and i heard her accent. that cuban accent man.

Sabrina March 20, 2012 at 10:16 am

Cuba is located in the Caribbean and therefore is the crossroads of the world. The people living there could be descended of one or many mixed races/ethnicities. There were a lot of Chinese, Filipino, Jewish, German, African, Spanish, Italian, etc. people on the island as well as the original native indians (Arawak or Taino or Carib or something). I hate when people say that Cuba is a black country…because not everyone who is from there is black or ascribes to black culture. However, there are a lot of black Cubans who have almost 100% African ancestry as well as mixed Cubans with lineage in Africa. I think the difference between Cuba and America is that we either acknowledge as a whole or it is very obvious that a lot of our mainstream culture has been influenced not by just Europeans but Africans. Santeria, the preservation of the Yoruba language/folklore (from Africa), certain clothing styles, gramma/syntax in Spanish, and food preparation/types of food eaten. Not to mention salsa being a blend of African beats with some European instruments. We are a Caribbean country. But as a Caribbean country we have more European blood than let’s say Jamaica, Trinidad, Haiti, etc. I am mixed with Cuban and Italian and ironically I get mistaken for almost anything but. Ironically, Arabic. Maybe because I have mediterranean features. But at the end of the day I know who I am. It hurts because I guess people assume that for me to be Cuban I should have brown/black skin, black/mulatto features, and curly black hair. Instead I have a tan/olive skintone, light brown eyes, wavy brown hair, and somewhat slanted eyes. And believe it or not there are a lot of Cubans who are pastey white and 100% Cuban descent but they are German-Cubans or Jewish-Cubans. Cuba is a country just like America but even more of a melting pot because it’s in the Caribbean. As for Catalonians – I heard somewhere that the majority of Spanish blood came from the Canary Islands…don’t know if that’s true.

Caribbeangirl February 14, 2015 at 12:00 pm

Cuba Don’t more european blood than some caribbeans maybe because of the populations ! The french english dutch & Portuguese peaking islands/countries but there are caribbean islands who are mainly white ! With the French English Dutch & Portuguese Caribbean islands & Countries (Amerindians,Whites,Blacks,East Indians,Asian(chinese,Japanese) Lebanese,Syrians,madeirans & Javenese So ofcourse but we are more multiracial & Cultural than you guys with more diversities :)

zenegal July 28, 2011 at 8:56 pm

catalans have arabian heritage so thats why she kinda looks arab

Delnegro July 29, 2011 at 2:06 am

Wrong cubans are mestizo or Afro-cuban

marjanel October 10, 2015 at 7:06 pm
Nubia April 25, 2011 at 4:47 pm

Isn’t CanalEs?

blackineseboi April 25, 2011 at 6:05 am

technically her parents were born in cuba but there catalan a race from spain.
check on wikipedia for proof

J Arenal Carter July 16, 2011 at 12:05 pm

Hey, thanks for clearing that up! That Catalan Cuban society was first formed in 1841. I am of Catalan origin. The Bacardi Rum family is a Catalonian family. A common name amongst Catalans is Mas. It comes from the name of the extended family farms they live on.

ethnic April 22, 2010 at 10:59 pm

It could be.

Arab Soulja April 22, 2010 at 9:16 pm

is Canals a cuban surname?

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