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Former Tucson TV personality Alex Miranda moves up to the big time

MIRANDA LEAPS FROM 'MORNING BLEND' TO CBS PRIMETIME

Alex Miranda spent two years as the co-host of The Morning Blend, which is basically an interview show focusing on business owners who buy segment time to talk about their products and services on KGUN Channel 9 and KWBA Channel 58. It is one of the lowest-rated locally produced television shows in Tucson.

Even though it is an unknown commodity for most Old Pueblo viewers, Hollywood producers saw something special in Miranda.

"I miss The Morning Blend. I had a really great time," said Miranda. "I learned everything I needed to learn there to prepare myself for a job like this. I loved Tucson and Arizona. It's only been a few months, but it already seems like ages ago."

Just three months after leaving, he is hosting a network reality show. Miranda is the host/confidant for the new CBS reality dating program 3, which premieres Thursday, July 26, following Big Brother before sliding into its regular Sunday timeslot.

"My agent submitted me for it, and I initially got an e-mail while I was working at The Blend," said Miranda, who had recently been turned down for a job in Atlanta. "(I thought), 'I'm not going to hold my breath for this one, but it sounds amazing.' I get a response about a half an hour later, and she said, 'They love you. They want to interview you. Let's get this train moving.'

"It was a fabulous audition, and I felt so incredibly comfortable. As I've said to other people, this is a job I've had my entire life—girlfriends have come to me with questions about their relationships since I was a kid. So, when I was presented with a situation (in the audition), it was like breathing, and I think they sensed that. A few days later, my agent called and told me I got the job. It was so surreal and unbelievable."

The show 3 follows, well, three women who are searching for love, but unlike relationship-based shows in the mold of The Bachelorette, it isn't a last-person-standing competition. The three women featured in the program are each attempting to find their own perfect match. It's more like a support group than a catfight.

"These women are ready to find true love," Miranda said. "(One of the women), Rachel, lost her husband to a long fight with brain cancer two years ago, and she's ready to start a new chapter in her life. The tricky thing is she's afraid of what society may think of a woman moving on. We'll see how that develops. I think a lot of people who have been in that situation will understand where she is today and the kinds of struggles she's faced, and how she feels she deserves to find love again.

"April is an entrepreneur and one of the most-impressive people I've ever met. She's 29, has three businesses under her belt, and is also a college professor. Yet she would throw it all away to find 'the one' and start a family. I think she will define her success in life not by her résumé, but by how successful she is as a wife and mother.

"Libby is a model from California, a beautiful woman inside and out. A devout Christian, faith is very important to her. She's looking for someone who has the same religious values. And we'll see if she'll be able to find that in a man she's also attracted to. (The three women) have become the best of friends who are there for each other, and that's really unique in reality TV."

As host, Miranda acts as sounding board, interviewer and audience conduit as the women progress on their journey.

"I'm the confidant. They come to me with their concerns and experiences throughout the show, and I share my insight and help them learn things about themselves," Miranda said. "They're there for each other, but I'm there for them as well. This is a job I've had since I was a kid. Apparently, I'm pretty good at it."

And it has also helped Miranda work through some of his own recent relationship issues.

"Three months before I got 3, I broke up with my partner of six years. It was the most-difficult decision of my life. I'm still going through it today," Miranda said. "He was the love of my life, my kindred spirit, my best friend, but it didn't work. The worst part is, I'm still in love with him. The show came at such an interesting time. We split, but he's always on my mind. The show is therapeutic for me. As I talk with Rachel, April and Libby, at times, I'm thinking about him. I have that relationship and those experiences as a starting point. I feel I have an entire lifetime of insight when it comes to love and heartbreak.

"The show is very hard for me sometimes. I haven't moved on, but I'm trying to move forward, and there's a difference. It's interesting knowing he'll be watching the show, and that I'm hosting it with him in the back of my mind."

The concept for the show was lifted from a program that airs in Israel.

"It was a smash hit over there. I'm confident it will be here, too. I really think people will love it," Miranda said. "It's fun. It's serious. It's even awkward at times. It has all of those components of dating. The show is very open. It's very real. That's why I'm so proud to be a part of it." y

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