In the Park with...
Cecilia Violetta López
Soprano, Opera in the Park
1. Where were you born / raised?
I was born and raised in Rupert, Idaho to Mexican parents. I'm a first generation Mexican-American.
2. What is in your ideal picnic basket?
Mom used to make us tacos de frijoles (kept warm by wrapping them in aluminum foil and leaving them on the dashboard) for lunch when we worked in the beet fields. Though our lunch breaks weren't/aren't considered a normal picnic to most folks, my favorite memories were our lunch breaks that mom ended up turning into make-shift picnics. TACOS!
3. My most memorable moment performing outside was...
...when I was a teenager singing with a mariachi band for a local rodeo in Idaho. It's my favorite because it was the first time I forgot the words to a song!! One of the mariachi band members was super supportive, encouraging me to repeat the first verse (while we were on stage!) to make it sound like I never forgot the words. That didn't work. The band kept playing and after awhile, the words eventually came to me. Embarrassing!
4. My favorite outdoor performance I've attended was...
When I was 13 or 14, my parents took me to see one of the last Mexican "charros" perform live at the Plaza de Toros in Morelia, Michoacán. The charro we saw was Antonio Aguilar and his entire family of singers! Mr. Aguilar took his dancing horses to the performance, to boot! I remember being in a constant state of awe -- Mr. Aguilar was such a great singer and performer.
5. My favorite summertime activity is...
...spending my daughter's birthday with her!
6. My ideal vacation is....
It hasn't happened yet, but I'd like it to be Bora Bora or Tahiti -- away from everything.
7. Bonus: One question you wish someone would ask you (and the answer).
Q: Is it true that the members of the First Regular Session of the Sixty-Fourth Idaho Legislature, the Senate, and the House of Representatives passed a resolution honoring and congratulating you for your many achievements in the world of opera?
A: YES! it's true. "The resolution was written by Opera Idaho board member Yvonne McCoy and introduced by Boise Senator Cherie Buckner-Webb. It honors the life and work of the opera singer from Rupert, Idaho."
Join Cecilia for Opera in the Park on Saturday, July 22 at 8pm in Garner Park. FREE admission; visit madisonopera.org for more information.