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Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Former Miss Venezuela Leaves San Francisco Production Because of Tea Party Values

Posted By on Wed, Jan 22, 2014 at 12:59 PM

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María Conchita Alonso has always shown her dedication to Latin culture through everything she does, including recording songs in Spanish, acting in Spanish-language theater productions, endorsing anti-immigration gubernatorial candidate Tim Donnelly -- wait, what?

Alonso resigned from her lead role in a Spanish production of "The Vagina Monologues" on Friday, January 17, after receiving a negative response to her appearance in a recent campaign video for Donnelly, in which he wears a cowboy hat and says things like "I want a gun in every Californian's gun safe."

Alonso's role in the video is to provide sometimes-accurate Spanish translations whilst holding a pink-sweatered Chihuahua named "Tequila," supposedly as an effort to attract more support for Donnelly from the Latino community. Seeing as Donnelly is the founder of the largest Californian chapter of the Minuteman Project, and has been an active proponent of border control for the past nine years, our guess is that it's going to take much more than a former Cuban supermodel standing next to him and holding a small dog to gain him the support he's looking for.

The Spanish-language version of "The Vagina Monologues" is set to run for four days this coming February at the Mission District's Brava Theater Center. Considering that the Mission is home to a large Latino community, and that the production is in Spanish, Alonso's endorsement of a politician who is openly against immigration caused quite a stir, particularly on Spanish radio. Seemingly surprised by this negative reaction, Alonso decided to leave the production. According to CBS San Francisco, Alonso stated that she stepped down from her role because "[critics on Spanish radio] were very concerned, and I said, 'you know the other actors don't have to go through this. They don't deserve this. It's on me only.'"

Prior to the release of this video, Cuban-born, Venezuelan-raised Alonso was best known for her title as Miss Venezuela in 1975 and her role in the 1984 film Moscow on the Hudson alongside Robin Williams, as well as her song "Vamos a Bailar," otherwise known as "that Spanish song in Scarface". She also appeared in an episode of Desperate Housewives in 2006. But -- this isn't the first time Alonso has been outspoken about her political views. In the past, she has compared Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez to Hitler and Chávez supporter Sean Penn to a communist, as well as endorsed John McCain's presidential campaign in 2008. Okay, so maybe she wasn't a good choice for this production all along.

As of yet, there has been no information released regarding who will replace Alonso in the play.

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Jessica Nemire

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