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Pedro Infante, one hundred years of the great idol of Mexico remembered for his simplicity

One day Pedro Infante entered a restaurant and before ordering he went into the kitchen to wash dishes; only when it was over, he told the owner: “Toño, I’ve done it, you can serve me”. Today he continues to be remembered for his simplicity, as well as for the talent that made him the “great idol of Mexico”.

Tomorrow marks the 100th anniversary of the birth of Infante (1917-1957) in Mazatlán (Sinaloa), which early on showed a vocation for music. He learned to play guitar, piano, violin and drums in a “natural” way, proving that he had a “gift”, says Sergio Solis, producer at Warner Music Mexico, to Efe.

“Obviously, people did not want to see him playing behind the drums, people wanted to see him in front, with the microphone singing, because he had a physical presence that they liked and they too,” he says with a smile.

The voice of Infante, who did not reach high records, interpreted genres such as rancheras, rancheras ballads, waltz or huapangos; “One hundred years”, “Paloma querida”, “Mi cariñito” or “Letters to Eufemia” are some of the themes for which he is remembered.

“Pedro Infante transmitted through his voice”, could give the right tone to a song with feelings of “party, anger, or sadness,” says Maria Eugenia Flores, daughter of the composer “Chava” Flores (1920-1987), who composed songs for the singer as “La tertulia”.

For her, “the idol of Guamúchil” knew how to overcome one of the difficulties implied by her father’s themes: “You have to know about the Mexican’s way of being, how to interpret, it is not a song that is said by heart and not Say nothing. ”

It is known that Infante had an amazing facility to learn the songs and record them in an agile way, although it was not like that in the first audition he made for a movie, when he almost overcomes the panic.

However, those initial fears did not last and Infante participated in some 60 films, including “Los tres García”, “Nosotros los pobres” or “Pepe el Toro”.

The Sinaloan, says Flores, has transcended by his charisma, which continues to “pull” people after death. When he asks why Mexicans are still such a close figure today, the explanations coincide in pointing out the idol’s personality.

Eurídice Cervantes, daughter of the composer Alberto Cervantes -who knew Infante from a young age-, defends that the singer and actor was a simple person, as the aforementioned anecdote of the restaurant demonstrates.

In addition, he adds, he helped anyone who approached him, with work or money, but “he was not talking about it”.

“It is very difficult for you to find an artist today who has all these qualities: simple, honest, humble, supportive,” he says.

Much was said about the alleged rivalry of Infante with Jorge Negrete, another of the idols of the so-called “Golden Era” of Mexican cinema and with whom he coincided in the film “Dos tipos de cuidado”, in which the two engage in a remembered duel of couplets.

Negrete’s voice “was much more important than Pedro Infante’s, but Pedro Infante’s emotion was unique”, reflects the tenor Fernando de la Mora.

Ensures that the singer “connected with the audience in a familiar way, in a unique way,” because “Pedro Infante is in the DNA of all Latin Americans.”

“He has crossed the barriers of forgetting, it will never be forgotten, we are talking about someone who will prevail because he moved the fibers not only of a generation, but of a nation, a Latin American nation,” argues the tenor, who has the repertoire popularized by Infante has been on stage several times.

To remind you, today will open the Museum of Pedro Infante in Guamúchil, which will have objects that belonged to the artist, while in the capital will be presented the exhibition “Forever, Pedro Infante” in the subway station of Fine Arts, and tomorrow a mass will be celebrated in the Basilica of the Virgin of Guadalupe.

It will always remain as a mystery what would have happened if the plane crash had not ended his life at 39 years. Throughout his career, he recorded 351 songs, the last of which was “La cama de piedra”.

“Someone said that the big ones are so big that they know when they have to die”, says Solís, who adds that there is no doubt that he had enough quality as an actor and singer to be remembered as what it is, “the great idol of Mexico.”
Isabel Reviejo

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