Serrano Heart is a Peruvian cumbia musical orchestra that has established itself as one of the most popular and successful in the country. Its legacy is reflected in the quality of its songs, the passion of its performances and the diversity of its members, who come from different regions and cultures. Its talented participants have earned the affection of the public and one of them is the popular Dani Daniel, the group’s entertainer. In an interview with La República, the charismatic presenter spoke about his personal life, future projects and unknown details of the coexistence that exists in Corazón Serrano. In this note, you will learn all this and more.
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―What is your full name and how old are you?
―Everyone knows me as Dani Daniel, but my name is actually Danie Stanfield Gonzales Ríos. My parents call me Stanfield, but even my children call me Dani Daniel and I am 33 years old.
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-What did you study?
―I studied Audiovisual Communication at SISE. I finished the degree, but I did not complete the paperwork due to lack of time.
―How did you discover animation?
―I have been broadcasting on the radio since I was 13 at the invitation of a friend. This friend had all day on Sundays and in the summer he wanted to go to the beach, so he found me, invited me, I discovered the radio and took the opportunity to get to know that world. The owner surprised him, discovered him and threw him away, then the owner talked to me to tell me if he wanted to be part of the radio and I told him yes. At first he would just play music, then he would say the time, then he would put on the music, say the time and the name of the radio and so on little by little.
—Where is that radio?
―In Végueta. In my town. That is 30 minutes from Huacho. It is a local radio.
―What anecdote do you remember from that time?
―A lady came to the cabin and gave me a piece of paper with five names. She wanted me to send greetings on the radio. At that time, a greeting cost two soles, so she gave me ten soles. Apart from what they paid me on the radio, she also earned me for greetings. I grew up and liked it more. There was a very big radio station there, so I later applied, but after two months, through a journalist, they came to look for me at my house.
-Did your parents support you?
―At first my father rejected it, but as he saw that there was growth, because not only did they call me from the radio, they also called me from clubs, promotions, pre-university academies, he accepted. There was an economic movement and (my parents) saw that. We were always humble.
-Do you have brothers?
-I have two younger sisters. My sisters and my parents have no longer lived in Peru for eight years. They went to Santiago de Chile. We always maintain communication and fortunately, Corazón Serrano always has tours abroad, always, every year, we go to Chile twice.
-Do you have referent animators?
―At that time, the greatest reference for me was ‘Gato’ Bazán. An eminence of animation. I was 15 years old and Armonía 10 came through my neighborhood. I ran away, I picked up bottles to look at the group, because they wouldn’t let me enter. I got involved anyway, but so they wouldn’t throw me out, I collected bottles.
-How do you get into a musical group?
―I remember a party called ‘La Cruz de Motupe’, back in my town. A friend from my class had his group, so he came to my house and told me that he was missing an entertainer. I was afraid at first, but I accepted after some advice he gave me. When I got home, I watched a lot of videos of cumbia groups and I grabbed my notebook and copied everything the animators said: when they said hands up, when they sang reggaeton or any rhythm. So when I showed up, I did it with my plagiarism (laughs). I worked with my friend for two months, so in a presentation a much larger group from the province (Huacho) saw me and invited me to cheer. I arrived at that group, then I arrived at another one called Tempestad de Chachapoyas. That group no longer exists, but from that very well-known group that had several events, several came out like ‘Cholo Macho’, among others.
―This is how you rubbed shoulders with more artists…
-Yeah. With that group I started doing national tours, we arrived in Lima for big events and they were packed. I began to have contact with more groups, little by little they got to know me. Then I moved to Privado de Tingomaría, then to a northern group Reinas de la Cumbia and that’s where Papillon pulled me. They didn’t have an entertainer, they offered me to work with them and I didn’t say no to the opportunity.
―What happened to Papillon?
―I was in Papillon for a while, but then I left due to some problems and worked with Dilbert Aguilar, then with Orquesta Candela, then, Safiro Sensual and there he called me Corazón Serrano.
―Yes (laughs) and I have forgotten many groups along the way. I have also worked with Leonard León, with John Kelvin, etc.
―You have always been linked to cumbia, but do you listen to other types of music?
―I actually listen to rock in old Spanish. Vilma Palma, Enanitos Verdes, rock from the 70s, 80s.
—Do you listen to Corazón Serrano?
―(Laughs) Seriously, I hear every day that when I’m alone, doing my things, I don’t want to listen to them anymore.
―What is living with the girls from Corazón Serrano like?
―Corazón Serrano is a family, for the reason that we are together every day. Of the 30 days in the month, we are together for up to 26 days. Yes, we have had problems, misunderstandings, like every family, but we have learned to solve them by talking.
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-About the coexistence that you mention, have you also seen some romances born?
―(Laughs) I think not romances. You see that there are moments when flirting exists, but it is part of the show. It never gets worse, in reality we have gotten used to spending so much time together that we no longer see ourselves as a couple (laughs).
―What are Corazón Serrano’s trips like?
―We do everything and there is a time for everything. At times we are awake and we take advantage of the time to play and joke. Someone brings cards, ludo or bingo. Or it also happens that we just want to rest.
―Who is the biggest joker?
―Lesly (Águila), without a doubt. She is more of a joker, she makes fun of you, she jokes with everyone.
—And the most punctual?
―Susana (Alvarado). My respects to Susana. When it comes to work, she is very punctual, dedicated, and hardworking.
-Who is the most careful?
―Lucía is very generous. Ana Lucía Urbina is very worried, if she doesn’t see you, she calls you, asks about you, she wants to know why you didn’t arrive. She asks if you have eaten, did they not give you dinner.
―How was Briela received?
“Here we received her very well. We provide you with all the support. Briela is a girl who comes with all the desire to work, that also motivates us. I got along very quickly with her. Since she is a salsa singer, she knows how to put on a show. I offered her to do the La Factoría song, she accepted me and that’s how she came out cool on stage. The video went viral on social networks, people liked it.
―What do you think of the Guerreros Neyra brothers?
―They are a very hard-working family. They are not conformists, and I like that. I have been able to feel that for so long. Edwin is one of those who does not rest, he is morning, noon and night in the recording studio, on tours, in presentations. Yrma Guerrero also, apart from being a mother, makes time for some presentations. Leodan, the person in charge of networks and media, is very concerned about the events. They are a very united family.
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―Nickol Sinchi’s departure was a big loss…
—Yes, actually yes, and people love her very much. We also love her very much. I am very fond of Nicki. It affected her exit, but people know that Corazón Serrano always has an ace up her sleeve. That’s how Briela came. Her song has also been a trend in Peru for almost two weeks.
―In networks they criticized some of Corazón Serrano’s departures due to the short time they were in the group…
―Actually, each person decides how to pursue their career. There are people who enter and make mistakes along the way, because they think it is easy. We travel constantly, we don’t rest. I think they get bored quickly, and others come in just to appear, but that ends quickly. Being at Corazón Serrano is a very big responsibility. The company always tells you and you automatically assume it.
-Do you have any children? Tell me more about your family
―I have three children and I am with my partner, although we have problems because of work. I don’t touch on family matters much, but I try to be there 200% on the days I have free. Those days I am dedicated to my house, I don’t even go out to the corner. If I go out, I go out to play sports with some friends, but it is sacred for me to give my children a kiss before going to sleep.
―Changing the subject, do you sing?
―In the group he sang reggaeton, I’m not an expert, but over the years I have a musical ear and I can sing.
-Are you planning to study singing?
-No. I am good as an entertainer. I like what I do and I constantly try to improve.
―What do you have in mind about your future?
―My future plans are to go abroad with the same job. I have offers from Bolivia, from Ecuador, offers from Chile, to move to groups there, but until now I have a contract with Corazón Serrano and I am fine.
―If you go to Chile, you would be closer to your family…
―(Laughs) Since I was 14 I have always been away, but I don’t rule out anything, you never know what might happen along the way. Perhaps it is one of the most accurate options, as you say, it would be closer to my family.
-How do you see yourself in 10 years?
―Wow. It’s something I think about very little, I’m a day-to-day person. Maybe, with a business and me working in the media. Dedicated to my career, because I believe that all of us, as we advance, go through stages. Suddenly, having a medium-sized group, because fighting at a national level is very complicated, you have to have a lot of dedication, but I also want to spend more time with my children. Be a little more father than any worker.