Laura, Ana Belén, Amanda, Diana, María Fernanda, Helena, Katherine, Magnolia, Raquel, Lucía, Caridad, these are some of the women that Alejandra Borrero has brought to life in her more than 30-year career as an actress. Sugar (1989), stagger (1992), the curse of paradise (1993), woman-fragranced coffee (1994), the other half of the sun (1997), Breath of life (1999), Bolivar is me (2001), Turning point (2003-2004), The last happy marriage (2008-2009), I’ll wait for you there (2013), good people (2014), are some of the stories in which she has given her talent and discipline, and for which she will be recognized with the Víctor Nieto A Toda una Vida Award at the thirty-ninth India Catalina Awards for the Audiovisual Industry.
His career began at school, under the baton of Sandro Romero, his first theater teacher. In those classes he understood everything: acting was what he wanted to do all his life. She did not come from a family close to acting, so at home it seemed, at first, something very strange, but Alejandra immersed herself in the stage and found her expression, her voice, the life of her
Her first play at the Sacred Heart Institution in Cali, earned her her first award as an actress. After finishing her university studies, she launched her film career. Beneath The Stars (1986), under the direction of Juan José Vejarano; This performance was recognized with the Best Actress award at the Bogotá Film Festival in 1988. Her first television role was in the soap opera Sugar (1989), as Caridad Solaz, under the direction of her friend and another of her great teachers and a genius of Colombian cinema: Carlos Mayolo.
I would come later Woman-fragranced coffee and her consecration before the general public, since her role as Lucía Sandoval de Vallejo, the antagonist, brought her international recognition. Her journey through television and cinema did not stop there, in the 1990s and 2000s her face became one of the best known and loved by Colombians, starring, or antagonizing, in numerous soap operas.
Theater was Alejandra Borreo’s first love, but her first professional job was in the play The Crepsydra (nineteen ninety five). This was the beginning of an exciting theater career in which not only acting but also the training of new talents was the genesis of Casa E, which since 2008 has been one of the epicenters of theater in Bogotá.
For all this, and more, since this is nothing more than a loophole in what is the bulging career of Alejandra Borrero, Infobae Colombia spoke with her, days before her trip to Cartagena, about her career, acting, television, the theater and his life in these three decades on stage and in front of the cameras.
Alejandra, there are more than 30 years of career, which begins in those classes with Sandro Romero. Looking back, how much water has passed under the bridge? How has the industry and the role of women changed?She, well, she has said that this award is also a recognition of all women.
It is an award for all the work I have done for so many years, so it is an honor, it is a joy, it is to think that so many years of work bring something like this, it is something really special.
The role of women has grown a lot, and it has to continue growing, that’s what we were talking about in cinema, but at this moment seeing camerawomen, scriptwriters, directors, technicians… it’s really a joy for me, because when I started this work there was not a single one. Except for a director at some point who had very little time to work, but at this moment we begin to speak from the female voice is very important.
His career began in Cali, in the Caliwood, that little oasis in which Luis Ospina and Carlos Mayolo led one of the most exciting periods of Colombian cinema; then television would come and always the theater. What remains of that Alejandra in today’s Alejandra?
Very different! No? The world has passed through me and I have passed through the world, so I am a much more experienced actress; she was a really scared kid at the time. This is the Sala Mayolo, imagine. So I’ve been able to turn it around and honor so many people who have been so important to me. I really wouldn’t change a day of my life, neither the hard ones nor the not so hard ones, neither the happy ones nor the happy ones.
I think that the experience of life is precisely, here one comes to live with a face with which one grows, and this face that I have, well, it is the one that corresponds at this moment.
That face has given life to many women, many of them strong, strong-willed, hardened, the majority, which of these women do you treasure the most? What is that relationship like with those characters who are left behind?
I always say that each character has its charm and that each character touches parts of myself. I have done psychoanalysis with all my characters, but I could say that the character of The last happy marriageWhen I did that character I felt so close to her, I was setting up Casa E, at that moment, and she set up her company (in the novel). It was a really beautiful women’s story, well written. Written by a librettist, so for me that character was a treasure.
Let’s talk about sugar. He participated in both versions, the first in the late eighties, directed by Mayolo, and the second, directed by Carlos Moreno, and according to the librettist of the two, Mauricio Navas, closer to his original idea. What was it like facing the same story from two different perspectives, two different characters, two different moments?
It was very interesting, you know? He Sugar What we did with Mayolo was pure magic. I was little, I learned to act, possibly, for the cameras in that series. Mayolo was a great man who had the ability to perceive this Cali lineage, this way of being of the Cali people, and it was an incredible moment. But, for example, the set —at that time (Rodrigo) Lalinde was the cinematographer, now the director— it was incredible to see each lamp full of cloth and that there was no possibility of moving the camera much, that the cameras had a much less definition; We got to the set and many times one couldn’t even read the script because of how low the light was; the lights were tiny little goats that they put out there.
For me it was very interesting to return to the hotel where I stayed so many years ago and where I was so happy and where so many things began; stepping on Buga again, smelling that air full of wonderful sugar again; seeing the sunsets in my Valle del Cauca again, it was really a very interesting moment. Many things that I could see and compare, and as an actress, really, I am ready to do the roles at the moment in which I am.
So, when doing the character that I did, which was Aunt Raquel, first I had to get into, hopefully, the work of Vicky (Hernández) which was absolutely great. But beyond that, creating a character and having fun with it and having the possibility to develop it from another place, of course.
Calidad Solaz (her character in the 1989 version) was a young, brave, frustrated woman, and this aunt Raquel had a lot of influence on her, however, because they were two totally different things and I enjoyed them equally.
Another role that is well remembered is that of Lucía Sandoval de Vallejo in Woman-fragranced coffee. This novel also had a new version recently, and the original version was also broadcast a few months ago. Is it very hard to judge yourself when watching the repetition of the novel?
Of course I do, especially seeing myself so beautiful, so young, so skinny. Wow! To think that she didn’t believe that she was a beautiful woman, that at that moment all the insecurities that her youth brings, and to see her now. I didn’t see her much, because she impressed me when she saw me. But see my path as an actress, how I have changed, how I now have other types of tools; Seeing that melancholic woman that she was at that time was very funny. And she is, of course, a character that gave me international fame. The coffee really was, as it was later Ugly Betty, one of those icons of the novels.
Your natural environment has been the theater, that first love, then comes cinema and television. What is it like to go from one format to another?
For me, really, it’s like water. I can go from television to theater and cinema without any problem, I would have wanted to make a lot more films, but in the nineties it was very difficult to make films in Colombia and that is why many of the directors, who would have been great film directors, they had to go on TV. That’s also why television gained that level it had.
For me it is not complex, I believe that an actor has the capacity to go through all of them, and let’s say that I have certain premises that I use for each of the causes. In the theater, rehearsing makes masters, you have to rehearse, and yet on Monday I’m going up on stage and I’m going to do white rabbit, red rabbit, a play that they are going to give me on stage, it is a very impressive acting challenge that I don’t know how… I’m already nervous. I don’t know, but what I love to do, let’s just say that at this point in my life I have nothing to lose and that it’s worth doing that kind of thing.
(It is important to note that the interview was conducted before the performance of white rabbit, red rabbit March 13, 2023).
The cinema is a gigantic battle, it has other very different ingredients, and well, there is a construction of the character that is very beautiful, because two, three, four scenes a day are also recorded; then there is first the general shot, the medium shots, the closed shots and you can go giving different nuances to what you proposed at the beginning; but you also have to be clear about what you did, how you did it and if you moved your hand, if you didn’t. I like that kind of stuff a lot.
Television is a job much more of the here and now, it is to seize the moment. One on television cannot mark a scene, because the director arrives and says that it will be totally different, so there is a different freedom to work there; I enjoy all
His life is House E Borrero. Due to the confinements due to the pandemic, the theater was about to close. How has the recovery of Casa E and the cultural sector in Bogotá been?
I must say that I come from the Treasury to tell me how sad, that in this country, after what was experienced because it really was a great disaster for everyone, there is no support from the governments around these issues. Culture is the soul of the people, the soul of the people. Culture is very important throughout the world, we saw it in the pandemic. If we hadn’t had the series, if we hadn’t been able to do podcast and all these things, I don’t know how we would have survived.
This is a job that is done out of passion, that I only follow because I don’t want these art spaces to be lost, but it has really been very complex.