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'What A Feeling' Singer, Irene Cara Passes Away

27 November 2022 | 7:25 pm | Mary Varvaris

She was 63 years old.

(Pic by Aaron Rapoport/Source: Facebook)

Irene Cara, the singer, actress, producer and songwriter, has passed away, her publicist Judith A. Moose revealed on social media yesterday. She was 63 years old.

Known for co-writing and singing the song Flashdance... What A Feeling from the film Flashdance, playing the role of Coco Hernandez in the 1980 film Fame and recording the movie's titular track, Cara was an Oscar and Grammy award-winning performer. 

Cara was born to a Cuban mother, Louise Escalera, a movie theatre usher, and a Puerto Rican father, Gaspar Cara, a factory worker and retired saxophonist. She found international success and critical acclaim with Fame, the film and song, and the other track she sang in the movie, Out Here On My Own. 

Moose shared the news of Cara's passing on Twitter, writing, "This is the absolute worst part of being a publicist. I can't believe I've had to write this, let alone release the news. Please share your thoughts and memories of Irene. I'll be reading each and every one of them and know she'll be smiling from Heaven. She adored her fans". The tweet captioned a post that said that Cara's cause of death is currently unknown and will be released when information is available. 

Hours later, Moose made another tweet, pleading for conspiracy theorists to respect Cara's family. "To everyone who has taken the time to express their grief, thank you. For those who are posting spam about cryptocurrencies, please stop. For those who are blaming a vaccine for her death, please don't," she wrote. "We don't have medical answers yet and won't until an autopsy is completed."

Patti Piatt, a County Commissioner of the Campbell County Democrats, replied to Moose's post and said, "I am from a generation of women who thought anything was possible because of Irene Cara. She gave us so much joy. We all danced to her songs, didn't matter if we could dance, we danced because she made us want to dance."

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The passing of Cara has struck an emotional chord with Latin American fans, who cite the Fame singer as an inspiration. Lenny Kravitz left a touching tweet in honour of the performer. He wrote, "Irene Cara, you inspired me more than you could ever know. Your songwriting and vocals created pure energy that will never cease. You also defined an era that is so close to my heart."

Actor Giancarlo Esposito (AKA Gus Fring from Breaking Bad) said, "Irene Cara, I loved you from the start! You will be sorely missed in this world. Your talent and beautiful spirit touched us all so deeply. Farewell sweet princess."

The Carlito's Way actor John Leguizamo also discussed Cara's impact on his career: "she was one of the reasons I am here today! She made me believe if you were Latin you could make it! She fueled my community. She will be missed! Rest in power!"

Wilson Cruz, who has a main role in the series Star Trek: Discovery, wrote, "her talent, her beauty, THAT VOICE, were revolutionary for me as a teen. Seeing her on FAME, hearing her on the radio lit my imagination on fire. Thank you, Ms. Cara. Rest now, bellesa."