Lola Beltrán

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Lola Beltrán
Lola Beltrán portrait, c. 1956 (cropped).jpg
Beltrán in 1956
María Lucila Beltrán Ruiz

(1932-03-07)7 March 1932
Died24 March 1996(1996-03-24) (aged 64)
Mexico City, Mexico
Resting placeChurch of Our Lady of the Rosary
Other namesLola la Grande
  • Singer
  • actress
  • television presenter
Spouse(s)Alfredo Leal
ChildrenMaria Elena Leal Beltrán
Musical career
  • Vocals
Years active1940–1996
Lola Beltrán Signature.jpg

María Lucila Beltrán Ruiz (7 March 1932 – 24 March 1996), known professionally as Lola Beltrán, was a Mexican actress and singer.

Beltrán is and was one of Mexico's most acclaimed singers of Ranchera and Huapango music. She made the famous song "Priscila elque se fue" collaborations with other acclaimed Mexican music stars such as Amalia Mendoza, Juan Gabriel and Lucha Villa. She was internationally renowned for her interpretation of the songs "Cucurrucucú paloma" and "Paloma Negra" as well as sang before many world leaders. She was nicknamed Lola la Grande ("Lola the Great").[1] Her song Soy infeliz ("I'm unhappy") was the opening music for Pedro Almodóvar's film Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown.[2]

On cinema, she made her film debut on El cantor del circo (1940) an Argentine film. She also shared credits with famous and important Mexican movie stars such as Emilio Fernández, Ignacio López Tarso, Katy Jurado, María Félix and Pedro Armendáriz in La Bandida (1963). Her last film appearance came at Una gallina muy ponedora (1982) sharing credits with Columba Domínguez and Emilio Fernández.

As a television presenter, she hosted the programs Noches tapatias (1976) and her own television program entitled El estudio de Lola Beltrán (1984), programs in which she received stars such as Cornelio Reyna, Juan Gabriel, Lucha Villa, La Prieta Linda and Luis Miguel.


In her native town of El Rosario, Sinaloa, Beltrán completed secretarial studies while she participated in singing competitions. She then moved to Mexico City but would return often to Rosario, working as a secretary at Mexico's number-one radio station, XEW, where she was professionally discovered by radio announcer Raul Mendivil.

Beltrán married matador and film actor Alfredo Leal and had a daughter with him, singer María Elena Leal. She entered the world of film in 1954 in El Tesoro de la Muerte. After appearing in dozens of films, most of them musicals, she obtained a starring role in the telenovela Mi rival with Saby Kamalich. From 1976 to 1985 she also hosted the musical shows Noches Tapatías and El Estudio de Lola Beltrán respectively.

Beltrán is still considered one of the most successful ranchera artists of all time. She gave concerts before various world leaders: President Charles de Gaulle of France, the leader of Yugoslavia Josip Broz Tito, Soviet foreign minister Andrei Gromyko, General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union Leonid Brezhnev, King of Spain Juan Carlos I and Queen Sofia, Queen Elizabeth II, American Presidents Dwight D. Eisenhower, John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson and Richard Nixon and Presidents of Mexico Adolfo Ruiz Cortines and Carlos Salinas de Gortari.

She was the first ranchera singer to perform at the Palacio de Bellas Artes (Palace of Fine Arts), the premier opera house and concert hall in Mexico. She also sang in the Olympia Music Hall in Paris, the Tchaikovsky Hall in Moscow and the Conservatory of Leningrad (now Saint Petersburg) in the former Soviet Union.

Beltrán was honored in 1995 with her inclusion into a series of commemorative postage stamps, issued by her native Mexico, honoring 'Popular Idols of Radio'. This was done in recognition of her lifetime achievement in the realm of popular music and her success in spreading an appreciation of Mexican culture throughout the world.


Lola Beltran at the Olympia (Paris), 1979
Beltrán's grave with wrong birthdate at Church of Our Lady of the Rosary in El Rosario, Sinaloa

Soon after recording Disco del Siglo (English: Album of the Century) with Lucha Villa and Amalia Mendoza "La Tariácuri" (produced by Juan Gabriel) she died of a massive pulmonary embolism at Ángeles Hospital in Mexico City. Her body lay on display in the rotunda of the Palacio de Bellas Artes (Palace of Fine Arts) in Mexico City in order to give her countrymen a chance to say goodbye. Only the most acclaimed artists, recording artists, poets, writers and actors are accorded this honor.



Year Title Role Notes
1973 Mi rival 19 episodes

Television shows[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1976 Noches tapatias Host
1982 El estudio de Lola Beltrán Host


Cinema of Argentina[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1940 El Cantor del circo

Cinema of Mexico[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1954 El tesoro de la muerte
1954 La Desconocida
1955 Bluebeard (Los lios de Barba Azul) doña Lola Bárbara Beltrán
1955 Al diablo las mujeres
1953 Espaldas mojadas
1955 Soy un golfo
1955 Pueblo quieto
1955 Camino de Guanajuato
1955 De carne somos
1956 Una movida chuecaa
1956 Con quién andan nuestras hijas? Prieta de Xochimilco
1956 Pensión de artistas
1957 Rogaciano el huapanguero
1957 Donde las dan las toman
1958 Guitarras de medianoche
1958 Música en la noche
1958 It Happened in Mexico (Sucedió en México)
1960 ¡Qué bonito amor!
1960 Las canciones unidas
1961 México Lindo y Querido
1961 ¿Dónde Estás Corazón?
1961 La joven mancornadora
1961 Besito a papá
1962 Camino de la horca Lupe
1963 La Bandida Cantante de palenque (Singer of palenque)
1963 The Paper Man (El hombre de papel) Puestera Voice
1963 Baila mi amor
1964 México de mi corazón
1964 El revólver sangriento Carmen
1964 Canción del alma Lola
1965 Los Hermanos Muerte'
1965 Cucurrucucú Paloma Paloma Méndez
1966 Tirando a gol
1966 Matar es fácil
1968 Valentín de la Sierra
1969 Duelo en El Dorado
1971 Furias bajo el cielo
1972 Padre nuestro que estás en la tierra Matilde
1975 Me caíste del cielo Lupita
1975 Las fuerzas vivas Chabela, Eufemio's wife
1982 Una gallina muy ponedora

Cinema of Spain[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1947 Song of Dolores


External links[edit]