There was no pink carpet, no star-studded, glitzy opening. And the one shiny lights had been from the kitchen.
Precisely how Carlos Alfredo Jr. wished it.
The 32-year-old actor celebrated the disclosing of the eagerly-waited Netflix manufacturing, “Selena: The Collection” final Friday night time proper the place he wished to: Along with his household at house in Vacaville.
“I haven’t seen my household in seven months,” Alfredo mentioned. “They usually’re the explanation I used to be capable of do what did.”
Although humbly acknowledging “it’s not an enormous position, I’m a collection common. I take into account my character comedian reduction,” Alfredo mentioned his arduous work paid off.
Nonetheless, he warned, don’t anticipate the actor-musician-artist till the fourth episode.
“My mother mentioned, ‘Let’s watch it from episode 4,’” Alfredo mentioned. “I do love the best way I’m launched.”
It’s been a 12 months for the reason that Will C. Wooden Excessive Faculty graduate mixed his appearing and musical abilities in snagging the position of Joe Ojeda, the keyboardist in Selena’s band, “Selena y Los Dinos.”
Along with his mother from Jalisco — Tacos Jalisco is the household restaurant — “I used to be excited to be round my individuals” with each seasons of “Selena: The Collection” filmed in Mexico, mentioned Alfredo.
“A lot unbelievable Latin expertise behind and in entrance of the digital camera,” Alfredo mentioned, laughing that “they’d given me this haircut I hadn’t had since I used to be in kindergarten.”
Alfredo is a skilled guitarist, so he took piano classes for 4 months “earlier than I set foot on the set. I wished to provide as a lot authenticity as attainable. I needed to do my homework.”
Raised with two sisters and across the household restaurant’s jukebox, Alfredo was nicely conscious of Selena’s influence, even when he was 7 when the 23-year-old Selena Quintanilla was shot and killed March 31, 1995.
“Selena had all the time been a part of my musical progress,” Alfredo mentioned. “Quick ahead and right here I’m in on this unbelievable set in Mexico for ‘Selena: The Collection.’ It’s the right fairy story.”
Good till the pandemic put the world on maintain.
“We had shot all the best way as much as March after which COVID hit,” mentioned Alfredo.
Filming was shelved till August, with season two accomplished final month.
When filming returned, “every thing was so strict,” recalled Alfredo, relegated to spending more often than not off the set at his assigned apartment for 4 months.
“We had been getting COVID assessments each different day,” he mentioned. “All these strict protocols.”
Alfredo mentioned 10 individuals within the crew — no person from the principle solid — contracted the virus.
“They must shut the set just a few days,” Alfredo mentioned.
It was December, 2018, when Alfredo realized in regards to the “Selena” venture. He was already anchored in Los Angeles three years and the clock was ticking — not less than when it got here to his dad and mom’ monetary assist.
“I had simply graduated from animation college with a level beneath my belt. That’s why bought into appearing into first place. I made a decision to maneuver to Los Angeles with out my dad and mom’ blessing,” Alfredo mentioned. “My mother mentioned, ‘By the point you’re 30, if this isn’t figuring out, we are able to’t assist you to any extra.”
Sure, mentioned Alfredo, “seeing all my mates from highschool getting married, shopping for vehicles, shopping for homes, having children … individuals had been telling me to return house. I’d play on the streets for cash, dwelling that Bohemian way of life. I used to be blissful.”
The trail would quickly change.
Having been “an enormous Selena fan,” Alfredo virtually drooled on the probability to be in what Netflix expects to be the most-viewed collection in its historical past.
“I begged my supervisor to get me within the room (for an audition) at any price,” Alfredo mentioned. “I turned so determined, I despatched a message to one of many casting administrators of a video of me performing Selena songs on guitar.”
Alfredo realized the traces “ahead and backward. I used to be super-prepared. I went in, did my factor, and felt ecstatic. I left the place floating.”
Nonetheless, a month goes by. Nothing.
“I’m questioning if another person bought the half or they’re nonetheless casting,” Alfredo mentioned. In the meantime, his sister’s December, 2019 wedding ceremony grew nearer. And he was presupposed to play.
With a guitar embellished with photographs of his sister and pending brother-in-law, Alfredo makes the drive from L.A. to Vacaville.
It’s rehearsal dinner week. His supervisor known as. They need one other have a look at Alfredo. He hops within the truck and returns to L.A.
The producers wished to listen to him for 30 seconds. As an alternative, he does a 15-minute Carlos Santana medley. Again in his his truck and off to Vacaville for the marriage.
Every week goes by. Possibly two. He’s known as again once more. Then one other month goes by.
“I’m considering I didn’t get it,” Alfredo mentioned. “Not less than I did my greatest.”
It was again washing dishes at a Japanese restaurant.
“Throughout my break I discover I’ve 25 missed calls from my supervisor,” Alfredo mentioned. “I’m considering that is actually excellent news or that is dangerous information. The very first thing she says is, ‘Hey Joe, how’s it going.’”
“Joe” as in Selena’s keyboardist, Joe Ojeda. Alfredo bought the job.
“I knew I had the position and my life would fully change. It was an unbelievable second,” Alfredo mentioned. “Goals do come true.”
As Alfredo positive factors extra nationwide — and with “Selena,” it’s positively worldwide — publicity, he’ll hit extra auditions. Meantime, he’s hoping to report an album.
“I wish to take my music to the world. I believe it’s attainable now with the success of ‘Selena,’” Alfredo mentioned.
Music was his old flame, having picked up a guitar at 10.
“My mother compelled me to play at church and I hated it,” Alfredo mentioned. “However in highschool, I found heavy metallic. I used to be quick and scrawny and had pimples and with heavy metallic I felt like I used to be a part of a group.”
Alfredo regularly matured into studying “every kind of Latin music,” however whereas his goals had been to be an expert musician, his dad and mom weren’t as thrilled.
“They mentioned, ‘That’s not a profession. You must go to varsity’ so I made a decision to be an animator,” Alfredo mentioned.
What school didn’t train him was the artwork of being the topic of media interviews. Alfredo dealt with 15 not too long ago in someday in selling “Selena.”
“I’ve realized that I hate speaking,” he mentioned. “I’ve all the time been shy; a reserved child rising up. I all the time hid behind an instrument.”
Alfredo ponders a childhood at Fairmont Elementary, Vaca Pena Center Faculty and Wooden Excessive.
“I come again each six months and now and again I’ll run into somebody from highschool. It’s bizarre. It looks like a lifetime in the past,” Alfredo mentioned.
“It’s humorous. My favourite meal all-time is rice with two over-easy eggs. I can eat it for breakfast, dinner, any time. She all the time has it for me.”
If another person cooks it?
“I can inform, little doubt,” Alfredo mentioned.