Concha Márquez Piquer, worthy daughter of Concha Piquer, sang very well. Because she was the daughter of who she was, many doors were opened for her. Because she was the daughter of who she was, they did not open wide for her. Although her voice, so similar in the timbre of some turns, to that of her mother, authorized her to feel the figure that she became hers, the comparison of her always, as in so many other similar cases, It was not particularly favorable to him. He had to fight her. Today, at the time of her disappearance, we can say that Concha Márquez Piquer triumphed in copla. But not enough, what she deserved and that, however, she obtained in many moments.
She chose her full name to jump on the boards. She did well, because she was the daughter of an important bullfighter and a great singer. Concha, her mother, met, in 1929, in Barcelona, by chance, a posh matador from Madrid: Antonio Márquez, nicknamed El Belmonte Rubio. The right-hander responded to the literary, popular, customary mythology of the profession. The son of a charcoal burner and a servant girl, he had triumphed in the arena, rising above his humble origins. He did not make an impression on Piquer, who, moreover, did not like bullfighters ("they think they are more macho than anyone").
But, following popular mythology, fate brought them together again some time later in Madrid, where the Civil War surprised them. They fled to France. They returned to Spain, to the Seville of Queipo de Llano, where Concha returned to acting. Instead, Márquez, who had reappeared briefly, cut his ponytail permanently. Both embarked in Bilbao, on September 1, 1944, bound for Argentina. And there, in Buenos Aires, on December 31, 1945, her daughter was born, who was sponsored by Eva Perón, who had celebrated her wedding with Juan Domingo Perón at the artist's house, in the exclusive Buenos Aires neighborhood of Belgrano. "Don't forget that for you I am your second mother," Evita told her goddaughter.
Conchita had been born in Buenos Aires because her mother, who was not legally married to Antonio Márquez, would not have been well regarded as a single mother in the modest Spain of that time. Concha took Conchita to the theater on weekends. And the girl, behind the scenes, memorized her mother's songs and the sweet poison of applause. And she decided to also be an artist. As if genetics weren't enough, her environment was there to lend a hand.
If Concha Piquer's life was like the plot of a couplet with all the fascinating topics of the genre to make it more plausible and her performer more authentic, her daughter's would not be far behind. As in a game of mirrors, obedient to a sentimental legacy that was less a choice than a predestination, Conchita would also marry in 1962, in the Madrid church of San Jerónimo el Real, with a bullfighter from throne: Curro Romero. And at 17 years old. A teenager. Is there room for more ingredients for a couplet lyrics?
Yes, it fits in her tragic plot. One of the two daughters of the marriage, Coral (the other was Concha, Conchitín), would be killed in a road accident at the age of 19 in the United States. The loss of her plunged her mother into a deep depression from which she came out by force of will and religious faith, and which she would narrate in her memoirs, entitled Myself.
Curro Romero, from whom she separated in 1979 and from whom she would obtain a divorce three years later, was her first love. But the man in her life was the actor Ramiro Oliveros, a great presence, a great voice, with whom she contracted a civil marriage in 1982 after divorcing Curro Romero. She had a daughter with him (Iris, 1988) and she lived together until today ("My life is gone"). There are two capital moments in the artistic life of Concha Márquez Piquer. Her presentation, at the age of 24, at the Calderón theater and, on June 21, 1970, at the Zarzuela theater. Two Madrid stages haloed by tradition and prestige. From both performances she would come out converted into the star that she became. She recorded albums on the Columbia label. In Spain she acted in great theaters and in the most important nightclubs of the time: Florida Park, Pavillon, Cleofás... Just like her mother, she jumped to America. On stage and on television in Mexico, she achieved her greatest success. She had musical training, singing and dancing, and even chose to represent Spain in the Passport to Dublin program in 1970, which would choose our song for the 1971 Eurovision Song Contest. She would win Karina.
In recent years, Ella Concha experienced serious health problems, respiratory insufficiencies, which she endured with dignity and discretion. She died in the ICU of the Quirón hospital in Madrid. She will be buried in the Madrid cemetery of San Isidro. Along with her mother, who has been lying there since 1990. Two women, two artists in two periods of the history of a country that is no longer the same as the couplets with which they portrayed it. But that will never stop resembling, in its essence, the one they both sang about.
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