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Mexican singer, Chavela Vargas, passes away at 93

August 6, 2012

Chavela Vargas, one of Mexico's nationally acclaimed singers, passed away recently at the age of 93. The performer had been in Spain promoting a CD, and was hospitalized a few days after her return, BBC News reports. She died of multiple organ failure shortly after being admitted.

Vargas, who was born in Costa Rica but rose to fame in Mexican culture, carved her path singing ranchera songs of loss and longing, according to the Los Angeles Times. She was also known for challenging gender stereotypes and speaking out about her homosexuality. In fact, she wrote and published her autobiography at the age of 81, in which she publicly came out as a lesbian.

"Homosexuality doesn't hurt. What hurts is when you're treated like the plague because of it," Vargas wrote in her book.

Vargas lived a star-studded life, as she was close friends with artists Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera. She also performed at Elizabeth Taylor's third wedding to film producer Michael Todd in 1957.

Those who want to talk about Vargas' life and death can make calls to Mexico with international phone cards.


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