Born in Mexico City and possessing the flavors of the Sinaloa and Jalisco regions, La Mala “Victoria Ortiz” the image of the new, strong and independent Mexican woman. A student of the dramatic arts under Luis de Llano, she moved to New York after her graduation to continue her studies and begin her career as a professional singer. Night club and festival performances led to work as a host for the Univision, Telemundo and Azteca America channels.

Her opportunities increased when Pepe Garza recruited her to perform on the Duetos program on Estrella TV ( Shortly thereafter her single, “I am now bad” became a popular hit and was nominated for “Revelation of the Year” at the 2010 Radio awards. From concert openings in Mexicali and Ensenada, Mexico to a nomination for “Female artist of the year” in 2011, to singles like “Nothing I see” and “The Bed”, Victoria has been building and expanding her brand in Mexico with an eye towards becoming a cross-over success. At the end of 2012 she was tapped by HBO to sing the national anthem at their “WBO Latino night” fight in Carson, California.

Her career continues to progress with promotional tours, magazine covers (TV and Novelas, Furia Musical) and a nomination for Popular Revelation in the OYE awards. She was honored by Mario Lopez Valdez, the Governor of Sinaloa, as an ambassador for the tourist state. Victoria’s debut album “Mala” (produced by TWiiNS in Venezuela) was just recently released. For Victoria this is only the beginning…

“My goal big is to get to a place where I can touch the hearts of the audience, and to inspire them to believe in themselves and their dreams.”

I&S: In comparison to most artists your career seems to be booming. What has set you apart and made you successful in your field?

VO: It has been a long road full of ups and downs, but I’ve learned something from every experience both personal and professional. Only with discipline, consistency and hard work have I been able to understand who I truly am as a person and that has helped me realize who I am as an artist and how to tell my story.

I believe that my fans can identify with me because I am like them and this is what has earned me their love and acceptance. I am a woman who has worked very hard to achieve what I’ve always wanted – without shortcuts – as an independent artist.

I left my country to come to the US to pursue my dreams and make them happen. I’ve been through ups and down in love…and I am not afraid to talk about all of the good and the bad because this is what has made me the person I am now. I believe that my fans can feel all of this passion through my music and that is what has set me apart.

I&S: Who paved the road for you in your genre of music? Anyone you look up to as a role model?

VO: There are so many amazing and strong women that have inspired me starting with my mother, Lupita Ortiz, who was an actress in Latin/Mexican movies in the US. I remember hearing her sing with mariachi or trio every time there was a family party. Other artists that have inspired me since I was a little girl are Ana Gabriel, Lupita Dalesio, Lucha Villa, Selena, and Jenni Rivera. All of these women represented independence, strength, passion and as I would say pure “amazingness”! I am so grateful for their legacy.

I&S: Where do you see yourself in 10 years time?

VO: I would love to be one of the top recording artist in my genre and maybe even explore other genres. Honestly one of my biggest goals is to help Regional Mexican Music become World Music and be an ambassador for Mexico all over the world. I also have plans to have my own clothing line and to help foster the careers of other talented artists through my own record label. I would also love to explore the possibility of acting.

I&S: If you were to advise a young woman about entering music as a profession, what would you say?

VO: You need to make sure this is really your number one passion; that you want it more than anything else in this world. It’s a rough, tough and long road but the rewards and most importantly the love of the fans are priceless. Work very hard, be disciplined, live, eat and breathe your music and your art. Know your boundaries and who you are – stay true to yourself. There will be many people who will try to change you, take advantage of you or try to make you do things you don’t really want to do, so it is important that you know what you stand for and to not fall for just anything. But most importantly, figure out your story; the story that you want to tell the world, the story that shows who you are as a person and what has molded you as an artist and set you apart from the rest. Dream BIG and shoot for the stars!

I&S: Any upcoming performance dates or album releases you’d like to mention?

VO: I’m super-excited because we just released my debut album MALA which is available via iTunes. You can also find it on my website . You can also check out my site for a full calendar of my performance dates and other news.

I&S: Your recent single, El Corrido del Amo (written by Alex Rivera), was released in June. Was there a personal story behind the lyrics?

VO: I chose to record this song because it talks about a girl who is trying to make a “tough guy” fall in love with her…telling him how she’s not as “good” as she seems and that they are a good match. I love the video particularly because I came up with the whole concept and co-directed it with Buena Films. The whole creative process and the shoot were so much fun! The girls who make an appearance in the video were actually fans who won a contest to be in the shoot. My good friend, the TV Host from Telemundo, Elva Saray is in it. Lastly, my puppies (everyone says they are not puppies, but thanks – to me they are my babies) also got a little cameo.

I&S: Can you define MALA for us? Is it MALA as in Bad or MALA as in Naughty?

VO: I would say it is both. I say a MALA woman is strong, independent, passionate but also sensitive and a dreamer. To me it represents the fun, naughty side of me, but also the side that comes out when I need to stand up for myself and put myself first.

A strong voice and a strong woman to back it up – we look forward to much more from Victoria Ortiz in the future. Image and Style Magazine thanks her for taking time for this interview and hopes to check back with her to see how she is making her dream come true.