|Year of Birth:||1989|
Daniela Vega Hernández (born June 3, 1989) is a Chilean actress and mezzo-soprano singer. She is best known for her critically acclaimed performance in the Academy Award-winning film A Fantastic Woman (2017). At the 90th Academy Awards in 2018, Vega became the first transgender person in history to be a presenter at the Academy Awards ceremony. In 2018, Time magazine named her one of the 100 most influential people in the world.
Born on June 3, 1989 in San Miguel, Santiago Province, she was the first child of Igor Alejandro Vega Inostroza and Sandra del Carmen Hernandez de la Cuadra. Vega began studying Opera with her grandmother at the age of eight. Growing up, she attended an all boys school where she was bullied. It was while she was attending the all-boys school in her late teens that she realized she was transgender and began to transition. Her parents and younger brother Nicholas were supportive of her, despite the conservative nature of Chile at that time. After she transitioned she suffered from depression due to the lack of opportunities for her as a trans woman, but her parents were supportive and her father encouraged her to go to beauty school, and later theater school.
Vega was asked by a writer and director to collaborate on a stage piece about transitioning, using her experience as a foundation. Her contribution resulted in her going on to star in the eventual stage production, Martin de la Parra's 2011 play La mujer Mariposa (The Butterfly Woman). This piece, where she also had the opportunity to sing, ran for eight years in Santiago. During this time, she participated in more pieces, most notably in Migrante (Migrant), a piece about migration. Vega's profile was elevated to a wider audience when she appeared in the music video of the famous song "Maria" by Manuel García in 2014. The song and music video were made in collaboration with a gay suicide prevention organization, to help raise awareness and prevent suicide in gay teens. She made her screen debut in 2014 in a drama called La Visita (The Guest), playing a trans woman at her father’s wake.