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The queen of reggaeton, Ivy Queen. File image.
The queen of reggaeton, Ivy Queen. Photo: "La Roca"- Ivy Queen

Ivy Queen honored at Latin Grammy Awards 

Iconic artist Ivy Queen, was honored at the Latin Grammy Awards in "Leading Ladies of Entertainment" for being a pioneer in reggaeton.

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Everybody out of the way, the queen is here. On Tuesday, Nov. 16, reggaeton diva Ivy Queen claimed her status as a pioneer of the genre as one of the 2021 “Leading Ladies of Entertainment” at the Latin Grammy Awards. It's a space that seeks to pay tribute to women who have broken down barriers in the world of art and entertainment.

In this sense, the iconic and powerful Puerto Rican singer is probably one of the most deserving women of this tribute, as she opened and paved the way for female superstars of the moment in the urban genre. Along with Ivy, songwriter Mónica Vélez, publicist Mayna Nevárez, and Spotify executive Mia Nygren received the recognition.

In a virtual ceremony, Ivy Queen talked to those present about the obstacles she faced when entering the reggaeton industry — a genre that was marginalized in its early days and that, like almost everything else in the entertainment industry, was dominated by men.

"In my genre I was the first woman singing reggaeton. Previously there was 'merenrap' and things like that, but when I got into rapping and doing reggaeton they would say, 'Ah, a woman rapping, what is that.' It's a constant battle in which you have to prove that you are who you are and that no one is going to steal what you were born with. It's a constant challenge," she said.

The reggaeton queen soon realized that being "different" at the time and being authentic, was what would lead her to achieve her dreams.

"When I started I had a lot of things that were a disadvantage. My nails were an 'issue,' my colorful hair, my looks, my baggy clothes... Everything was an 'issue.' Like, I had to please others and stop pleasing myself," she said.

Today, all those issues Ivy points out are aesthetic attributes valued in female artists of the genre. However, for Ivy they meant a constant criticism. Ivy Queen asked women in Latin music to "not be silenced,” and encouraged them to continue to break with the conventions and roles attributed to the genre, stating that this would be her legacy. 

The Leading Ladies of Entertainment tribute took place on Tuesday, Nov. 16, two days before the Latin Grammy ceremony in Las Vegas. 

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