Premios Juventud 2016 – An Up Close and Personal Review
By Gabriela Guerrero
Retro night was the theme for the Premios Juventud PJ 2016, and what a groovy night it was!
The red carpet (it was actually gray) was filled with celebrities looking glamorous and wearing their best retro outfits; photographers trying to capture every moment (and hopefully something “out of the ordinary” to sell;) and funky music played by DJ Karlos, winner of the DJ@PJ battle. During the “gray” carpet at the pre-show, the press had the opportunity to photograph and interview the talent who took a few minutes of their busy night to chat about their current and future projects (and maybe a little about a subject that might be controversial at the moment.) PRs (public relations agents) took the opportunity to introduce new talent to the press. Some of them were lucky to land an interview, it all depended if a celebrity (meaning popular) walked by and took the spotlight away. I respect those reporters who interview new talent and treat them the same way as they treat the popular ones; that is professionalism. After all, they could become the next A-lister! And I also respect those “famous” artists who take the time to talk to the press during pre-shows, they really don’t need to, they have enough media coverage as it is. I guess you can tell who really is an artist at heart, because he just wants to share with the world how happy, thankful and appreciative he is, and does not need to pretend he doesn’t see or hear the reporters calling out his name. Side note: I remember once, a very famous female singer from Mexico, top talent, was very late to the show. She walked the red carpet (which at that point was over) and heard her name being called out, and she stopped (yes, she stopped!) to give brief interviews to the few reporters packing their equipment (usually top talent walks early in the night.) She was charming and did not want to miss any reporter who wanted to interview her. Needless to say I admire her even more now.
The pre-show ended with Jakob Forever and Farruko singing “Hasta Que Se Seque El Malecon.” It was a wonderful and fun closing of the red carpet, and a perfect warm up for what ended up being one of the best awards shows in the past couple of years (my opinion.)
These were the big winners of the night, and remember, the nominees and winners are chosen by their fans:
Group CNCO (yes that is the name, pronounced cinco which means five because the group has 5 members, but the group name is missing the I) is a fairly new group. The group will certainly gain more popularity now after winning in five categories out of six nominations: Best dressed, Voice of the Moment, Producers Choice Award, My Pop Rock Artist, and My favorite Tuitero (yes, that is a word meaning twitter celebrity.)
For the second year in a row, Luis Coronel took home the Regional Mexican Artist of the year award. He was happy and had a smile from ear to ear. He was thankful that his hard work finally paid off.
Marc Anthony won the Best Tropical Artist award. He seemed surprised and shared the award with the other artists in the same category who did not win. I have seen Marc Anthony in several events & conferences, and had a chance to talk to him for a bit, and I can truly say that he is exactly what we all see on stage: a humble man, unselfish, with good feelings and with an incredible talent.
Colombian singer JBalvin was recognized with the award Mi Fan Army (his army of fans.) JBalvin thanked his social media followers, fan clubs and fans for such an honor.
A sweet moment was when young musician Luis Figueroa won the De Cover a Cover award. Luis got teary eyes and emotional before going on stage to accept the award, and Marc Anthony gave Luis a hug. Luis won the award for doing the cover of Marc Anthony’s song “Flor Pálida.”
A nice surprise was the award El Molusco received, the Qué Actorazo (What an Actor) Award, considering actors like Antonio Banderas and Fernando Colunga were also nominated.
Well, about the show, it was full of surprises, entertainment, and overall well organized and executed. I am not an expert of putting together live TV shows; however, I have attended a few and I can only say that this one was perfectly carried out. I am sure there were “issues,” but as long as the public didn’t notice, it was perfect. It was nice to see that during commercials, the public was allowed to leave and return to their seats without having to wait until the next commercial (yes, it happens in some award shows.)
The seating was done differently than in other award shows. The floor area had fans standing all over it, not just below the stage, it seemed like a big party. The talent was accommodated on one side of the floor. Most times the floor area is set up with chairs for the talent and fans who are called “fillers.” Fillers are asked to take the seats of the artist when they go on stage, or back stage, or when they leave; this is done to give the illusion of full attendance. In that type of set up, fillers have a chance to sit next to an celebrity and get that fabulous selfie. I guess that is the prize they get after standing in line for hours under the sun and being moved from one chair to another. Going back to this show, the fans in the floor area carried a fanny pack provided by the organizers with different lights inside to wear during different performances. During commercials, they were given instructions on which light to use for which performance. It actually looked amazing when the colorful neon lights were on. I have to congratulate to whomever came up with that idea, and to those involved in making it all work seamlessly.
The retro show began with Gente de Zona and Los Del Río performing La Macarena with everyone singing and dancing to the “heyyy Macarena.” I can honestly say that from that moment on, nobody in the section where I sat stopped dancing. It was a fun crowd.
Side note: soon you will hear on the radio a remix of the song performed by Gente de Zona and Los Del Río, it is called “Más Macarena.” Better start practicing those moves again!
There were several performances that I could list, which I am sure you saw on TV that night or that you could catch in YouTube, but I will just mention in short detail a couple that truly impressed me:
A grand piano was in the center of the floor and I heard the first lyrics of Marc Anthony’s song “Flor Pálida” and I though “That sounds just like Marc Anthony,” but nah, that couldn’t be him, I didn’t hear he was performing. I looked up to be sure, and I saw Luis Figueroa singing. I was impressed by his beautiful voice. I looked down for a second and next I see Marc Anthony walking on stage to sing along, the crowd went crazy. It was a beautiful surprise, and a perfect rendition of “Flor Pálida” by Luis Figueroa!
Enrique Iglesias performed a mix of his greatest hits finalizing with his latest single “Duele el Corazon.” Just watching Enrique perform is a show by itself. He brought energy and sexiness to the stage while his fans danced and sang along. What makes this singer a success, besides his talent, is the fact that he is as nice on stage as he is in everyday life, a true artist.
Other performances included Becky G who gave an impressive performance inspired by Britney Spears; Pitbull brought nostalgia with “The Amthem” and “Ay Mi Dios” with Chino and Yandel followed by his new hit “Messin’ Around;” colombian singers Maluma and JBalvin making the public dance; Jesse & Joy’s psychedelic performance in a hippie style and VW bug; “El Tiburon” by Proyecto Uno; “Pelo Suelto” by Gloria Trevi; “La Quiero a Morir” by DLG; and performances by Sophia Carson, Laura Pausini, Victoria Justice among others.
PJ 2016 concluded the night with colorful confetti falling from the ceiling while the public cheered and danced to a perfect awards show night.