Interview with Actor Eduardo Sanchez Torel

by Helson Hernandez

Eduardo Sanchez Torel. Photo: Boris L. Muried

HAVANA TIMES — Eduardo Sanchez Torel is an Argentinian-born actor with a distinguished career in Spain and Cuba. As he noted, “I appreciate the struggle of Mariela Castro to change things.”

HT: How many years have you been an actor?

ES: Sixty years as an actor and fifty years as a director and author.

HT: What are your most vivid memories of your native Argentina?

ES: The creation of the children’s character “Payasin,” which became famous in television and theater. Then too, there were various stagings and performances I did in plays for adults.

HT: Why did you immigrate to Spain?

ES: It was because of the military dictatorship in Argentina of that time, given my left-wing views.

HT: Once you settled in that country, what path did your artistic career in Europe take?

Eduardo Sanchez Torel. Photo: Boris L. Muriedas

ES: I started with the children’s character on radio and television, and worked on shows for adults as an author, director and performer.

HT: Who was “Payasin” in your life?

ES: That character was my justification as a human being and artist, and is something that makes me feel proud.

HT: When did you come to Cuba?

ES: In 1987.

HT: Here on the island, you have also carried out significant artistic work.

ES: At least I’ve tried to thanks to my being recognized by Cuban professionals and various bodies such as the UNEAC (the Union of Writers and Artists of Cuba), which named me an “honorary member.” I was also conferred the “Diploma de Oro”(Golden Diploma) this year by the Gran Teatro de La Habana.

HT: What is “Derribando Muros” (Tearing Down Walls)?

ES: That’s the title of my autobiography, which was published by the Academy of Sciences and Arts of Spanish TV, of which I’m a member. It was also the name of the recent one-person show I just premiered on May 15 in one of the halls of Bertolt Brecht Theater in Havana. This was presented in tandem with an exhibit by the painter Jose Luis Bermudez, from the town of Moron in Ciego de Avila Province. His work was inspired by that writing.

Eduardo Sanchez Torel. Photos: Boris L. Muriedas

HT: Do you think that taboos against sexual diversity still affect the development of artists, particularly in Cuba?

ES: Yes, here and in many other parts of the world, so I appreciate the struggle of Mariela Castro to change things.

HT: In your love life and marital life you also carry a piece of Cuba.

ES: Yes, since on April 20, 2007 in a town called Algete, very close to Madrid, I married a Cuban, Hector Garcia Daniel Dias, after having been in a relationship with him for seven years, and I’m very happy.

HT: In what way do you arrive at this stage of your existence, in art and in life?

ES: With the same illusions as always.