Lola Beltrán (born María Lucila Beltrán Ruiz, 1932-1996, was one of the greatest Mexican ranchera singers, nicknamed Lola la Grande ("Lola the Great").
In her native town of Rosario, Sinaloa, Beltrán completed her secretarial studies while she participated in many singing competitions. She then moved to Mexico City where she was discovered while working at the radio station XEW, and never went back to Rosario again.
She married Alfredo Leal, a matador and film actor, and with him had two children: María Elena Leal, who is also a singer, and José Leal. She entered the world of film in 1954 starring in El tesoro de la muerte. After participating in dozens of films, most of them musicals, she obtained a role in the telenovela Mi rival with Saby Kamalich. In 1976 and 1984 she hosted the musical shows Noches tapatías and El estudio de Lola Beltrán respectively.
Beltrán is still considered with Lucha Reyes the most successful ranchera-music singer of all time. She was the first ranchera singer to perform at the Palacio de Bellas Artes. She also performed at the Olympia music hall in Paris, the Tchaikovsky Hall of Moscow and the Conservatory of Leningrad (now Saint Petersburg) in the former Soviet Union.
Soon after recording Disco del Siglo with Lucha Villa and Amalia Mendoza "La Tariácuri" (produced by Juan Gabriel) she died of a massive pulmonary embolism at the Ángeles hospital of Mexico City.
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