Gloria Estefan Paid Tribute to Her On-Screen Daughter Naya Rivera
"I hope she's remembered as a wonderful triple threat."
In the wake of Naya Rivera’s death last month, so many of her famous friends and Glee co-stars have paid tribute to her, opening up about their favorite moments and how much she meant to them. In a new interview with Andy Cohen on his SiriusXM radio show, Radio Andy, Gloria Estefan talked about Rivera's tragic death, sharing her memories of the late singer and actor, and it’s so touching.
Estefan worked alongside Rivera on Glee, appearing in two episodes of the hit series as Maribel Lopez, Santana’s mom. The music icon told Cohen how her guest role on the show came about, sharing that she and her daughter, Emily Estefan, are "huge fans" of Ryan Murphy’s work, including Glee, and she was “thrilled beyond words” to snag the role.
“When I got the opportunity and was invited to be a part of it, I was thrilled beyond words," she said. "When I was there, [the young Glee cast members] were at their peak of fame. So, a lot of the kids, you know, were great, a lot of them weren't handling fame that well and didn't have the kind of rapport that Naya had.”
She also talked a bit more about Rivera’s many talents and her time on the show.
“Naya was really down to earth and warm, and [it] was a joy to play her mom," Estefan said. "She had really amazing chops."
And when we're all remembering Rivera, Estefan hopes we can all see her as she did.
"But I hope she's remembered as a wonderful triple threat. She really was one of our young acting talents and dancing and singing, it's just such a shame," she said.
Estefan also revealed that she planned to produce music for Rivera after Glee ended in 2015, but Rivera’s marriage (to her ex-husband, Ryan Dorsey) and pregnancy delayed their plans. “We were gonna do that music, [we] were working on it, and then she got pregnant," the singer told Cohen. "She married and got pregnant, so she got sidetracked in that respect at that moment."
Check out the clip below to hear Estefan’s discussion about Rivera with Cohen.
Of course, her words echo what so many of Rivera’s fans and loved ones feel in the wake of her loss, and we’re so grateful to Estefan for sharing these memories.