Gerardo Fulleda León: “I am not a fan of myself; I am a fan of others”

Gerardo Fulleda León: “I am not a fan of myself; I am a fan of others”
Fecha de publicación: 
5 February 2023
Imagen principal: 

Dramatist, director, and researcher Gerardo Fulleda León, National Theater Award-Winner and distinguished citizen of the stage world, walked by the streets of Camaguey —which he knows very well— a few days ago. He, who is author of some of the best texts of Cuba’s canon, is an undisputable referent of more than one generation of artists and stage lovers…Although he actually rejects that idea out of sheer modesty. The Ciudad Teatral Day, which was held as an alternative to the National Theater Festival, had him among its most distinguished guests. And there, between conferences and staging, he reflected on the importance of that city for Cuba’s performing arts.

“Getting back to Camaguey was like taking the pulse to today’s theater performance. We barely get in touch with the performances done outside Havana. Havana is the main center of theater activity in Cuba. But theater is performed from Pinar del Río to Santiago de Cuba. And sometimes, a really good theater is performed. That is why we shall defend this city as a privileged scenario of Cuban theater.”

-How much impact does your work have in Camaguey (and in Camaguey’s theater performance)?

-A lot. I attended the first National Theater Festival. And I have always returned since. It has been always a very rewarding experience. It was a time where we could always see and listen to each other’s ideas, artists from different ages, roots, and aesthetics. And we always had time to debate, dialogue…so each of us could draw their own conclusions afterwards. 

So, that exchange of views definitely enhances your work. It has surely marked mine.

At first, we just talked about purely Cuban playwriting, but then we realized we must open up the spectrum. Thing is that even when we debate about a Czech author, our Cuban vision will always prevail. These dialogues with the world would always grant benefits for each side.

-Those days, you referred a lot to the importance of exchanging, of sharing experiences...

-The truth is that this is the base of theater and of all art. You do not write for yourself. For me, it is vital to talk to the other. I'm going to tell you something that I have repeated several times: I am not a fan of my work, I really like others. Everybody’s. It would be sad to wallow alone in my conflicts. I would have to reinvent myself a lot to make a moderately interesting work...But the others have a lot to say. The thing is knowing how to listen to them.

Translated by Sergio A. Paneque Díaz / CubaSí Translation Staff

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