At the Billboard Latin Music Awards in Miami on Thursday night (April 30), Jennifer Lopez made some serious magic happen onstage.
No, she didn’t flaunt her infamous lip-syncing skills or stun us with a promiscuous rendition of “Booty.” Instead, she reprised the movie role that shot her to stardom by paying tribute to Selena Quintanilla-Pérez, who was murdered two decades ago at age 23. Lopez earned rave reviews for her captivating portrayal of the Tejano superstar in the 1997 biopic “Selena,” and last night she continued paying tribute in a stunning way.
Joined by the Quintanilla family band, Los Dinos — which includes Selena’s brother A.B., sister Suzette, and widower Chris Pérez — Lopez charged through a bilingual medley of hits. She opened with “Como La Flor” as a montage of Selena footage played behind her, then moved on to “Bidi Bidi Bom Bom,” “Amor Prohibido,” “I Could Fall in Love,” and “No Me Queda Mas.” The only song that was really missing was “Dreaming of You,” but honestly, that might’ve made the whole thing a little too heartbreaking.
Lopez somehow managed to squeeze in three wardrobe changes in just seven minutes, each outfit appropriately resembling Selena’s flamboyant stage style (bedazzled bustiers and ruffles galore!) She also broke out some of Selena’s most recognizable dance moves, adding up to a performance that was equal parts electric and emotional.
Lopez said in an interview on the “Today” show on Friday morning, “There is only one Selena. And there only ever will be. She’s just one of those special types of artists that — with her music and her spirit and her heart — really touched people. The impact that it had on my life, on my career … It was a great thing for her to be my mentor. And it was a great thing to have her teach me so much about how to navigate this business, but also how to navigate through life.