Wednesday, November 13, 2013

The most beautiful romance of Catalina Ortiz

I first met Catalina Ortiz Provencio in 1990 when I interviewed her within sight of Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles. She was 71. I was capturing memories of people who had lived in Chavez Ravine in the '20s, '30s, '40s and '50s --- before the City of Los Angeles made them move from the quaint, ethnic neighborhood.
I had seen her interacting playfully with her husband, Morro, so I made it a point to ask her about her first encounter with the man she would marry. Her response was magical. Some 20 years later, I interviewed her again. She was 91 at that time. Recently, she passed away. Her family asked me to produce a short tribute to the love she had for Morro, who died several years before the second interview I had done with her. You may have seen a shorter video I made. This one weds the stories that she told --- 20 years apart.

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

Good work, Don!
from Melanie P

Anonymous said...

Great Work, Don!

Melanie P

Pam said...

What a sweetie pie...She was so joyful and "in love" with her hubby and with life...I think sometimes while telling her story, if she couldn't have laughed, she would have cried...Just a delight...Well done, Donny...Thank you!!!
Pam and Jon Kirkwood

Pam said...

She was a sweetie, Donny...So loving and so adorable and full of joy and life...I felt, while watching your video, that if she couldn't be laughing, she would have cried...Her's was a deep and lasting love...SHE WAS COMMITTED FROM THE GET GO...You did a fabulous job in captureing the real "loving wife" here...God Bless Her... and you too!

davidseville said...

Whatta rush, Don..., whatta rush !!!
Such an adorable reflection of all the wonder and romance of my twenty-five years of magic in L.A. --- just a precious, vital, loving L.A. woman-girl !!!

Anonymous said...

Another great video! I wish all our elders would do this. It's fun for them, but even more important to their future generations. Thanks for what you do, Don!

Vicki

Bill Prather said...

Catalina sure had a wonderful personality. I'll bet she brightened the lives of everyone around her. Her family will treasure this.

Don, I have seen a lot of your work. I think this is the best job I've seen yet. The cuts between the years are really smooth, and show a remarkable consistency in her energy over the years.

If you want to show anyone what you can do with an oral history - show them a bit of this.

A+
Bill Prather

Fran T said...

She is adorable. Reminds me of my mom. Always laughing and so passionate. I wish there were more in the world like her. Thanks Don, that's a lovely tribute to both of them.

Don Ray said...

Fran, it's interesting because, indeed, Catalina also reminded me of your mother. Both were beautifully missing that gene that filters out expression of emotions. I'm so glad you took the time to read it.

Don Ray said...

An A+ from Bill Prather is an honor that I'll treasure for years. I feel like I need to thank all of the people who make it possible. Let's see, Drew Sullivan was the camera operator in the 1990 video. It may have been his first shoot. Oh, there are so many people to thank. Thank you, Bill, for that vote of confidence and the wonderful suggestion to share this video with others who may be considering a video oral history. How cool!

Don Ray said...

Just so you'll know, when Pam, David and Melanie give our work the nod, it injects magical excitement into the whole operation. There's a special magic in knowing that, decades from now --- centuries, maybe --- people will be able to feel as if they know Catalina and so many others we have been so fortunate to have known. There aren't many things that are this exciting. Thanks so much.

Martin Maier said...

Great job don

Marty M

Martin Maier said...

Great job Don

Marty M

Don Ray said...

Thanks, Marty. Next Friday, I'll be interviewing a 103-year-old veteran --- she's the oldest living member of the Women's Air Corp in WWII.