MCCC Patron Series Presents
Tickets: $33 – $85
In Partnership with River Radio
Sponsored by WSIL TV3
Charo is an American music and pop culture Icon who has entertained millions throughout her career. Charo is instantly recognizable by her trademark expression, “Cuchi Cuchi”, which has endeared her to audiences around the world and made her name synonymous with music, fun and excitement. Some have started calling Charo the Queen of Instagram as her new channel @OfficialCharo racks up followers and engagement with content that is fun, entertaining and informative.
Charo is a virtuoso guitarist, singer, composer, actress and comedienne who has been voted “Best Flamenco Guitarist” twice by Guitar Magazine. Her latest release Besame Mucho is a beautiful tribute to her late husband, symbolizing their long-lasting marriage and deep love for each other. Besame Muchoas well as her numerous recordings are in high demand on iTunes, Spotify, CD Baby, Pandora, and other digital music retailers.
Charo wowed over 17,000 at The Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles with her brand new show, featuring her virtuoso guitar skills, her orchestra and dancers. She also appeared on ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars” and dazzled America with her rendition of Malagueña during the season finale. She has also starred in several episodes of the CW’s “Jane The Virgin” and appeared as the Queen of England in Syfy’s Sharknado 5. Charo and her family also appeared on an episode of ABC’s Celebrity Wife Swap, bringing to millions the antics and hilarious situations in her crazy Beverly Hills household.
Charo is the recipient of the 2014 Ricardo Montalban Lifetime Achievement ALMA Award, bestowed by The National Council of La Raza (NCLR), the largest national Latino civil rights and advocacy organization in the United States. The NCLR ALMA (American Latino Media Arts) Awards celebrates America’s favorite Latinos in the entertainment industry, television programs, films, and music.
Charo also enjoys huge popularity among gay audiences and has appeared several times on “RuPaul’s Drag Race.” She also teams up with top-name DJs and producers from around the world, who add their dance mixes to Charo’s virtuoso guitar performance and come up with dance hits, one of which earned her a World Dance Music Award Nomination.
Charo draws huge crowds wherever she goes. She is equally famous among English-speaking Anglos as well as Spanish-speaking Latinos across the U.S., Latin America and Europe. She is also an icon in the LGBTQ community and known for her activism on behalf of human and animal rights.
Charo is Master Performer. Charo, the musician, has been an integral proponent of contemporary Latin music. She was named Female Pop Album of the Year Award at the Billboard International Latin Music Conference for her flamenco inspired platinum album, “Guitar Passion.”
Charo has appeared in countless hit television shows, including more than forty-five appearances on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson. She also appeared on the long-running series “The Love Boat” more than any other guest star. Charo also guest-starred on “Sonny and Cher,” “The Carol Burnett Show,” and numerous appearances with Bob Hope and Sammy Davis, Jr. She has also been a regular on “Hollywood Squares” and VH1’s “The Surreal Life.” Charo also appeared in such films as SHARKNADO 5, MOON OVER PARADOR with Richard Dreyfuss and AIRPORT 79: THE CONCORD.
Charo is a humanitarian and an activist for animal rights. Like Pamela Anderson, Paul McCartney and Pink, Charo is a member of PETA who speaks out against animal cruelty. Charo was recently back on the Billboard charts with her latest single dance club hit – España Cañí, the traditional bullfighting song, which she recorded in protest against bull fighting.
Charo also teamed up with World of Wonder to produce the video, entitled “España Cañí: Dance, Don’t Bullfight,” which became a viral hit. Charo’s efforts eventually led to a ban on bull fighting in the Catalonia region of Spain. Charo adopted the young bull featured in the video and named him Manolo. Watch Charo and her bull Manolo.
Charo’s signature album “Charo and Guitar” is a mixture of her patented rhythms and mastery of classical guitar. It is a combination of the most exciting and original music of today and the most famous classical masterpieces in the world. Charo performs brilliantly and passionately on these powerful tracks, blending heart and soul with her unique Flamenco style.
Charo is short for Rosario, her given name of Maria Rosario Pilar Martinez Molina Baeza. Born in the town of Murcia, Spain, Charo learned to play the guitar at an early age and studied under the world-famous master of Flamenco guitar, Andrés Segovia. Becoming a recording artist in her early teens, Charo appeared in the Spanish film classic DON JUAN TENORIO. Famed Latin bandleader Xavier Cugat happened to be watching TV in a Madrid hotel room as Charo appeared, playing guitar in the children’s show “Villa Alegre” (Happy Village). While still a teenager, Charo joined Cugat’s band and traveled to the U.S. where Charo became a sensation. Soon, she was appearing on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, introducing her trademark “Cuchi Cuchi” to America.
Soon, Charo began performing as a solo artist at the Congo Room at the Sahara Hotel and Casino, sharing the stage with the likes of Johnny Carson, Joey Bishop, Danny Thomas, Buddy Hackett, Jim Nabors and George Burns. During this time, she recorded her hit disco albums, La Salsa and Flamenco Salsa on Capitol Records. The single “Cuchi Cuchi” went platinum and became a hit in nightclubs worldwide. Her follow-up album, Ole-Ole on Salsoul Records contained the single “Stay With Me” and became an international hit, achieving gold status.
With the introduction of her international hit “Dance a Little Bit Closer” Charo created and established a new bilingual salsa style: “The Charo Rhythm,” which has been emulated by other performers. In 2003, Charo received a Screen Actor’s Guild Award for creating the Latin Style.
In 1985, Charo and her husband, Swedish businessman, Kjell Rasten, visited Hawaii and fell in love with the islands. Soon after, Charo relocated her family to Hawaii in order that her 6-year old son could lead a normal life. “I wanted our son to grow up in a healthy and beautiful environment. I just closed my eyes to some good offers in show business. I love show business, but my family is my priority.”
While in Hawaii, Charo exclusively produced and starred in the variety show Tropical Heat at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Resort in Waikiki and for ten years, it was the most successful show in Hawaii. It was during this time that Charo began preparing her critically acclaimed album Guitar Passion, which Billboard Magazine called a “fine flamenco-rooted album that spotlights her fluid finger play.” Guitar Passion was named Female Pop Album of the Year at the Billboard International Latin Music Conference and reached platinum status worldwide.
Following the success of Guitar Passion, Charo released Gusto in 1997, a dance album, which includes the hits, “Give Me Cuchi” and her remake of “Besame Mucho. After her son graduated from high school, Charo returned to mainstream show production and headed for Las Vegas. In 2001, Charo headlined and produced “Bravo,” at The Venetian Hotel & Casino; it was one of the hottest shows on the Strip and was named “Best Variety Show in Las Vegas” by Time Magazine. Bravo ran for two years chalking up rave reviews and the near mythical achievement of TWO standing ovations per night.
Charo had returned to Vegas triumphantly with what many critics hailed as the best show of her career.