The actress, model and presenter Laura Valenzuela has died this Friday in Madrid at the age of 92. In the end, she has not been able to overcome the delicate state of health in which she had been for a few weeks, and which led her to be admitted to hospital units.
Valenzuela was one of the first faces to appear on television in Spain, coinciding with the start of regular TVE broadcasts in 1956. In a time when technology was still in its infancy and black and white was the norm, the young Laura already dared to put herself in front of the cameras of this new medium.
In the early years of Televisión Española, Laura Valenzuela shared the screen with some of the most important names in the history of the media in Spain. Some of them were Jesús Álvarez, Blanca Álvarez or the most remembered Joaquín Prat, with whom she presented the Saturday music program Galas at the end of the 1960s.
However, the biggest professional challenge for the presenter in that decade was to lead the only Eurovision Song Contest held in Spain to date, in 1969. Massiel's victory a year ago with La, la, led her to organize the festival in Madrid hand in hand with TVE, and the entity entrusted its conduction to Valenzuela from the outset.
Leading Eurovision that year was really difficult for Laura Valenzuela. Not so much because of the responsibility of presenting an event with worldwide dissemination, but because of the unprecedented event that occurred in that edition of the event: four countries tied on points for first place (Spain, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands and France). Therefore, she had to come out and give the four winners. "This is quite unexpected," she would say then.
After a 20-year professional break to dedicate herself to her more personal sphere and her subsequent return at the beginning of Telecinco, Laura Valenzuela returned to TVE in 1996 to lead Mañanas de Primera. In the magazine, in addition, she had her daughter Lara Dibildos as one of her regular collaborators.
Although the adventure was brief, for only a few months in the 1996-1997 season, its broadcast coincided with the 40th anniversary of the public corporation. There, he was able to carry out a very special program in which he had some of the most iconic faces in the history of Spanish Television, in addition to remembering those first images from 1956 in which Valenzuela was already in front of the cameras.