From the Expanded UniverseLong before the Theelin population dwindled to the point of near-extinction, the species contributed a number of great works to the rich tapestry of performing arts in the Galactic Republic. For many scholars, the operatic form of the Divas -- a religious order of female Theelin singers -- became the standard against which all other vocal performances were measured.
A cruel twist of mutation among the Theelin led to genetic incompatibility among their own kind, dooming the species to extinction. Their biological makeup was close enough to humanity that many Theelin bloodlines were continued through cross-breeding with human and near-human species. Infant mortality rates in such cases were high enough that even this recourse could not maintain the culture in large numbers. Ironically, some of the most powerful and stirring works of the Theelin were the masterpiece epitaphs that accompanied the extinction of their people.
By the waning days of the Republic, only a few million Theelin pure-bloods and half-breeds survived. Many within this scattered culture clung fiercely to their heritage. Females, regardless of individual singing talent, were often named Diva, in the hopes that they would continue the operatic tradition upon maturing.
Diva Shaliqua rarely spoke of her parents, but it is known both were slaves of Ingoda the Hutt, a cruel entrepreneur who had been "collecting" Theelin slaves. The half-Theelin Shaliqua was conceived of in secrecy, and Ingoda was furious when he discovered that his slaves were procreating. He spared the life of the offspring, since a Theelin female could prove most lucrative if she proved to be a true Diva.
When Ingoda became indebted to the shrewd Jabba the Hutt, he was forced to sell two of his slaves -- Diva Funquita and Diva Shaliqua -- to his business rival. Jabba kept Shaliqua for his house band, and gave Funquita as a gift to Gardulla the Hutt.
Accompanying Jabba to the Podraces, Shaliqua made acquaintances with gamblers like Watto, Graxol Kelvyyn, and Romeo Treblanc, a retired actor and new owner of the Galaxies Opera House. An avid Podracing enthusiast, Romeo was attending as Gardulla the Hutt's guest. He traveled incognito, not wanting to let the glittering Coruscanti celebrity world know he dabbled in such seedy ventures. Unfortunately, he bet on Gasgano and lost big when Anakin Skywalker won the Boonta.
Shaliqua noticed that Treblanc's interests in her ran a long a much more cultured path than that of Jabba's other friends. Treblanc seemed to recognize her genuine singing talents and potential. He promised to see her again the following Boonta Eve. A year later, he had recovered from his gambling losses, and brought enough credits with him to buy her from Jabba. By then, the Hutt's fickle tastes had turned to other possessions, and he parted with Shaliqua without fuss.
Treblanc freed Shaliqua, and brought her to Coruscant to study and perform at the Galaxies Opera House. But hours after their arrival, Shaliqua vanished, taking only her emancipation datawork and a few items stolen from Treblanc's home. Tragically, he had planned to offer her a small role in the Galaxies' next musical. For Treblanc, it proved to be another in a long string of ill-advised investments.
Shaliqua adopted a stage name and took up a legitimate if unremarkable entertainment career in the interchangeable and unremarkable nightclubs and casinos of Coruscant's mid-levels. She never realized how close she had come to breaking through to the big-time.
This entry was developed by Hyperspace members "nelwyn53100" and "Valin Kenobi."
Keywords: Databank - Episode I
Filed under: Vault, Character
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