By David Owens
Azteca Theater Like and follow: Facebook Twitter
Back in the 1970s the Azteca Theater was fully engaged in the presentation of movies and talent from Mexico. Azteca Impresario Arturo Tirado was well known around California and often escorted top acts around the state.
|Arturo Tirado, Azteca Theater Manager|
Back behind the stage there is a staircases to rooms where singers and actors could rest and prepare for their performances. They are odd rooms, about 20-feet long and tapering from 10-foot wide to a five-foot wide trapezoid space.
Some performers used it as a dressing room, others for a green room, and over the years many visitors signed their names on the walls. At first glance it seems simple graffiti, but then you start to recognize names and dates of the people who came there.
|Wall art of F. F. 1974|
Listen to Fernando Fernandez
Many names are scrawled on the wall, often very lightly in pencil. I have increased legibility where possible by adding some contrast.
I appreciate anyone in the audience who can recognize or correct my transcriptions. Click on images to enlarge and leave comments with you thoughts and additions.
Listen to Valente del Campo
Valente del Campo, Celia Nieto, Sahol Esqueda, 3-31-1979
Hector Montemayor, Recuer Dos De Su Amiga, Olga Martinez, La Sinaolense, 7-8-1079
Listen to Hector Montemayor
|Y Mr. Tirado|
Show Man Hugo Karman
Show Man La Pacaha Flores
Toto Y Tito
Estrellita Mary Irene Consuelo
Y Mr. Tirado Listen to Maclovio Contreras video
Oscar Y Carolina
|Recuerdo de sus Amiga|
A big heart for:
Recuerdo de sus Amiga
Jose del Monte
|Arturo Tirado poses with Ana Berte Lepe, 1960|
The top actresses and actors from Mexico packed the 700+ seats at the Azteca Theater. Even Cantinflas (Mario Moreno) stopped in Fresno. Watch Cantinflas in "Soy Un Profugo" from 1946. (100 minutes)
See song and dance from Ana Berte Lepe
"La Fronteriza" 1978
See Maria Elena Jassa perform "La Fronteriza" at the Mexico Theater in Los Angeles, it looks exactly like the Teatro Azteca in Fresno inside.
|Jose A. Jimemez|
|Manuel Ceja 78|
Jose Luiz Gonzales
Listen to Maclovio Contreras
Julio Fileman 1970
Jose A Jimenez Alicia Juarez Yolanda Oropeza Oct. 6, 1972
Jose A Jimenez y Alicia Juarez perform "Tu Solo Tu"
Listen to Jose A. Jimenez "Las llaves de la Casa"
Alvaro Zermeno Marina Padilla Alvaro Lara Palomo y Paloma 6-26-1975
Listen to El sauce y la Palma by Alvaro Zermeno
Song Palomo y Paloma
7-29-1978 Un recuerdo de sus amiga Yolanda Hernandez
Sep. 17, 1976 "Chelilo" Yolanda Hernandez
Listen to Valente del Campo, Celia Nieto, Sahol Esqeuda, 3-31-1979
Maybe this song !
Ah, the golden age of Mexican cinema and music!
Let me paraphrase a little from "Arturo Tirado and the Teatro Azteca: Mexican popular culture in the central San Joaquin Valley," by
Manuel G. Gonzales.
"Imagine going to a theater in a small town in the 1940s thru 1970s and seeing top movie and musical stars performing live before packed audiences. This was the experience of many Mexican workers in the San Joaquin Valley at the Teatro Azteca in Fresno.
The performers were not from Hollywood. To these audiences, first- and second-generation immigrants from Mexico, they were even bigger celebrities--Cantinflas, Pedro Infante, Maria Felix, and the other great actors and actresses of the Golden Age of Mexican cinema. "
See a few more examples of golden age performers on our Azteca Theater Channel
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