August 8, 2002 | Indiana University Opera and Ballet Theater
Camelia La Tejana - Only The Truth
Composer:Gabriela Ortiz
Librettist:Ruben Ortiz Torres
For many years now Mexicans everywhere have known about Camelia "La Tejana," who was the subject of three corridos popularized by the famous band "Los Tigres del Norte." Unlike women in other corridos, Camelia had dared to kill one Emilio Varela, the lover who betrayed her after they smuggled some weed over the border together. Many years later, another man commits suicide by lying on the train tracks in the Mexican town Ciudad Juarez. As soon as this takes place, the tabloid "El Alarma," claiming to report "only the truth" reveals that Camelia is not a myth and that she may have something to do with the man's death. While the media, the public, and many men revel in their ties to Camelia, her myth and her reality; a journalist is intent on findig the truth behind it all.

Scene 1: Prologue - The Alarma!
Ciudad Juarez, capital of drug dealing and illegal migration. The chorus tells 
the story of the suicide Eleazar Pacheco Moreno, quoting the sensationalist 
tabloid Alarm! Spiteful, poor and drunk; Eleazar placed his head on the 
railroad tracks and was beheaded. A citizen of El Paso remembers a Camelia 
La Tejana ("The Texan"), who seemed to be tied to him ... Just a junkie 
prostitute. His mythical image appears, singing only sighs, as he will 
throughout the work.

Scene 2: TV Azteca - Agustina Ramirez Corrido
A journalistic investigation of TV Azteca's news department has discovered a 
woman (Agustina Ramirez) who claims to be the legendary Camelia from the 
corrido, despite she denies the veracity of the song. In the glamorous and 
seedy television interview, she tells her story: after being raped in her 
childhood, she spent time in drug trafficking and had many men under her 
command, but now preaches God's Word.

Scene 3: Camelia's Father - El Tigre "The Tiger"
In a fictitious scenic meeting, Camelia's three putative fathers present their 
versions: Elijah Wald, historian, researcher at the University of Californa, 
discusses the impact of the corrido "Contrabando y Traicion". The composer 
of that corrido Angel Gonzalez recalls how he wrote it, and assures everything 
is fiction. The lead singer of "Los Tigres del Norte", Jorge Hernandez, lectures 
on the artistic creation, fame and the corrido that made them famous.

Scene 4:The Blogger
The anonymous author of a blog publishes his hallucinating personal theories 
about the reality (undeniable for him) of the existence of the Camelia from the 
corrido. His opinions range between morals, cheap philosophy and rude 
statements about the character's nature and drug trafficking.

Scene 5: Camelia Maria
The journalist from La Jornada Cesar Guemes has found, after arduous 
investigation, another mysterious woman that seems to be the historic 
Camelia, who acquiesces to give an interview in a car with tinted windows
demanding absolute discretion. She answers his questions in an elusive way, 
denies being a killer and blames the media about this stories, allowing to see 
somehow that she (possibly) was the real Camelia.

Scene 6: Eleazar's Suicide - Funerary
After witnessing Eleazar's rail decapitation in video, followed by 
electroacoustic music, some witnesses complete their testimonies and finish 
their analysis of the suicide in the very particular style of the tabloid '" [Alarma!"]

Giiemes the journalist states: "And from Camelia nothing was ever known 
again" The mythic Camelia sings a cappella the corrido "Contrabando y Traicion" electronically intervened.

Click company name to view productions details.
Long Beach OperaCamelia La Tejana - Only The Truth3/24/2013 - 3/24/2013

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