Carlos Gorostiza, Argentine playwright, theatre director and novelist, Died at 96

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Carlos Gorostiza Rodríguez was born on June 7, 1920, and died on July 19, 2016.

He was an Argentine playwright, theatre director, and novelist.

Carlos’s seminal work El puente debuted in 1949 and he garnered numerous awards for his proceeding works.

Gorostiza later was Secretary of Culture between 1983 and 1986.

Carlos’s stepfather, who was a playwright born in Spain, had introduced Carlos to the theatre and in 1943, he debuted his first work, with a puppet show titled La clave encantada (The enchanted key).

That show led him to open a puppet theatre, La Estrella Grande (Big star) and he started frequenting the Máscara (Mask) Theatre, where he began a successful run as Creon in their productions of the classic Greek tragedy, Antigone.

He was encouraged by friends, he presented his first play at the Máscara Theatre in 1949, El puente (The bridge).

After El puente’s success, Carlos Gorostiza went on to theatre direction, though without the draw of spectators he had earlier enjoyed.

He took a job as a publicist for an ad agency whose chief customer was a laundry soap maker, his fame returned somewhat as a screenwriter for Julio Saraceni’s drama Marta Ferrari (1954) and when his play El pan de la locura (The bread of madness) was produced at Buenos Aires’ famed Cervantes Theatre to acclaim in 1958.

However, the tragedy won him the coveted Municipal Prize, an award that earned him an invitation to the Central University of Venezuela Drama School in 1960, where he taught and co-wrote Los Caobos (The mahogany trees) with Juana Sujo.

But due to the return to democracy imminently following the Falklands War and economic collapse at the hand of the dictators’ economists, Gorostiza produced Killing Time and A Fire to Put Out in 1982, plays which earned him an Argentores Prize.

After his political ambitions, he had returned to writing, publishing a novella, collaborating on an acclaimed 1989 documentary of the Open Theatre and penning a nostalgic look at his brief time with his barnstorming natural father, Aeroplanos, which won him another Argentores Prize.

Carlos Gorostiza works continued to be shown into his 90s, with four in rotation on the Buenos Aires theatre circuit in 2015.

He died in Buenos Aires.

Carlos Gorostiza passed away at 96 years old.

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