By: Dinah Lee Medrano
She was referred to as the “Queen of Tejano,” The “Mexican Madonna;” Selena Quintanilla-Perez was more than just a singer to the Tejano community, she was an inspiration and her music was a reminder of their roots. Tejano music is a sultry blend of traditional Mexican folk music with country-western and polka style sung in Spanish. There have been many popular and life-changing performers in this industry.
Selena began performing publicly when she was just nine years old. Her father started a family band that included her brother, Abraham, and her sister Suzette. Just eight years later, Selena would go on to win “Best Female Vocalist of the Year” and “Performer of the Year” at the Tejano Music Awards. In 1993, she won the Grammy Award for best Mexican-American album.
Selena had a sexy flair and unique stage presence. Her courage to cross over into English music was one that was unheard of, especially for a woman. She showed her fans her true colors and had a personality that kept her audience wanting more.
She was so loved by her community because she cared about more than just her singing career. She constantly spoke to middle and high schools about the importance of education, achieving goals and staying off drugs. Selena was also a spokesperson for D.A.R.E (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) to encourage kids to resist drugs.
Tragically, on March 31, 1995, Selena was murdered by Yolanda Saldivar, the founder of her fan club. Saldivar was confronted by Selena for embezzling money and was going to be fired. The news of Selena’s death devastated the Latino community and her fans all over the world. Selena’s memory will continue to live on in the hearts of all her dedicated fans. Upon her passing, thousands of people gathered at vigils all over the country to honor her beautiful life and inspiration to others.
In “Pulga Time Machine,” our brand new comedy sketch show by the Mexcentrics, Rogelio and his crew go to desperate measures in order to try and save our beloved Tejano Queen. Will he succeed? Come to the next performance and find out!There are only three performances left, Feb. 27-March 1st, this Thursday-Saturday at 8 p.m. at the Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center. Tickets are $20 for reserved seats, $16 for general admission, and $13 for students/seniors.