Cuban Actor Ruben Brena Dies at the Age of 70 in Havana

Rubén Breña acting in a drama on national television. (ICRT)

14ymedio bigger14ymedio, Havana, 23 March 2023 — Cuban actor Rubén Breña passed away this Thursday in Havana at the age of 70, official media reported. The artist died after spending several days in intensive care at the Hermanos Ameijeiras Hospital due to complications from erosive gastritis.

This Wednesday, and after several postings on social networks by friends close to the artist who denounced the lack of medicines to treat Breña, the official press published a note, something unusual in the health system of the Island, by the Hermanos Ameijeiras Hospital saying that the hospital had “everything necessary for his care.”

“From the first moment the patient had all the treatment required for erosive gastritis with the application of 20 mg of Omeprazole according to the protocols,” said the note, which caused outrage among Cuban Internet users for the severe shortage of drugs that the Island’s health system has suffered for more than two years.

According to the note, the actor had arrived at the hospital “in shattered health.”

Incredible, but true: Rubén Breña is in intensive care at Ameijeiras. He needs Omeprazole and vitamin K (not orally) and there is none,”   complained the actor and television director, Rolando Chiong, a few hours before the official publication.

Breña, known mainly for his diverse characters in dramatized series on Cuban television, was born in Pinar del Río in 1953. In the early 1970s he graduated from the National School of Theatre Direction of the Ministry of Culture and became part of the Zafarrancho and Trotamundos theater groups. In addition to theater and television, he worked in film and radio.

On television, his performances are remembered in dramatic works such as Tierra brava, Historias de Fuego, Cuando el agua regresa a la tierra and Salir de noche. According to the official media Cubadebate, Breña “was a self-taught painter and was fond of music and poetry.”

“Rest in peace, friend, man and great actor. Someday, someday. The good ones die, the fucked keep being fucked and living. That’s why, damnit, every day I don’t regret what I say,” actor Erdwin Fernandez wrote on Facebook, from the United States, when he learned of Breña’s death.

Among the official recognitions that Breña received in life, the Actuar Award for Life Work awarded by the Artistic Agency for the Performing Arts in 2019 stands out.

Translated by Regina Anavy


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