Cuban Theater Digital Archive

René A. Buch

Director, general director, artistic director, artistic director, translator, author / playwright

René Buch was founder and Director of Pro Arte de Oriente’s Theatre Department, as well as founder of Havana’s Acción Teatral de Autores. Through the ATA, he made possible the staging of plays by aspiring Cuban playwrights. He holds a degree in Law from Havana University. In 1949, Mr. Buch came to the United States and enrolled at the Yale Drama School. While completing his MFA degree, he taught both Spanish language and literature at Yale. The Hollow Shell was published in Cuba after its premiere at Yale, and Del Agua de la Vida, which received Cuba's National Theatre Award, played in several Cuban cities. After moving to New York, he worked for the Radio and Television Department of the United Nations, where he became Editor of the United Nations Journal Spanish edition. Later, he served as Associate Editor at Visión magazine, writing on music, theatre, film, art and literature. In 1963, he moved to The Latin American Times, as editor for the arts, and worked with Reader’s Digest as a book editor in Mexico City.
The success of his La Dama Duende in 1968 gave birth to a new company – Repertorio Español. As Artistic Director of Repertorio Español, Mr. Buch has directed classical Spanish, Latin American, English and American plays as well as Latino/a playwrights. His work with a specially chosen company of actors has developed an outstanding ensemble, which has won critical acclaim throughout the United States, and on its tours to Latin America and Spain. Under Mr. Buch’s direction, Repertorio Español has presented Operas, Zarzuelas (Spanish operettas) and anthologies of classical and popular Hispanic music to enthusiastic audiences.
As a playwright, Mr. Buch has also had his own plays staged. Mr. Buch has served as a panel member for the National Endowment for the Arts and the New York State Council on the Arts, The Village Voice OBIE Awards Committee and the Independent Committee on Arts Policy, and as a board member of the Theatre Communications Group. He is featured in the documentary, Theatre of Rice & Beans.

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Year Category Award Result
1983 Best director Premios ACE Winner

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