• Radio theater


Directed by Elisa Zulueta|Adapted from Casimiro Vico, primer actor by Armando Moock


  • Spanish
  • General Audience

One of Chile’s most important stage plays from the first half of the twentieth century is back in radio theater format, directed by Elisa Zulueta.

Casimiro Vico is an idealistic tailor who’s forever dreaming of being an actor. At night, his workshop opens its doors to all kinds of people from the world of theater - including directors, playwrights and actors - to drink, smoke and dress up for free. At one of these get-togethers, they convince him to sell his humble workshop and buy a company that has gone bust, where he’ll be the leading actor and his wife, Carmen, the leading lady. With high hopes, the tailor agrees, but he encounters problems on the way and is betrayed by his group. Blind and stubborn, everything goes downhill and he sees his dream of joining the theater cut short.

Cast and crew

Directed and adapted by: Elisa Zulueta, based on the play Casimiro Vico, primer actor, by Armando Moock | Cast: Paola Volpato, Héctor Morales, Antonia Santa María, Luis Cerda, Natalia Grez, Sergio Hernández, Jaime Omeñaca | Coproduced by: the Teatro a Mil Foundation.

Elisa Zulueta


Personal, everyday stories

From the pen of Elisa Zulueta (1981) - actress, director and playwright – come familiar, intimate stories focusing on personal details and people’s relationships. Praised for her play Gladys (2011), she has worked with Álvaro Viguera and Delfina Guzmán before on another moving monologue, La grabación. Among her other plays are Pérez and Mía and, as a director, she has been involved in productions such as Pérez and Gladys.

© Memoria Chilena

Armando Moock


Portraying the Chilean middle class

According to the Memoria Chilena site, this playwright was born in Santiago in 1884 and abandoned his studies in architecture to devote himself to the theater. He wrote more than 50 plays, including Isabel Sandoval, modas, which won acclaim from both critics and audiences alike, as well as Pueblecito, Un crimen en mi pueblo, Rigoberto and Mocosita. He is known for his portrayal of the Chilean middle class and the customs of the time. As well as his work in theater, he was also a diplomat in France, Spain and Argentina, where he died in 1942.

–Its script is an accurate portrayal of Chilean society in the thirties during a global economic crisis. This was also when the theater – a successful alternative source of entertainment in the country, with large venues filled to the rafters for plays like Isabel Sandoval, modas, also by Armando Moock (1915) – started to face competition from movies with sound. The plot of Casimiro, written in 1937, is itself based on a theater company on the verge of disappearing that, thanks to Casimiro’s ingenuity, is offered a way of financing itself.

–Armando Moock’s script is a must for twentieth century Chilean theater anthologies. In fact, in an article in El Mercurio’s Wikén magazine in 2017, it was named as one of 20 Chilean plays that merited a revival.

Radio theater: This is an art form created through words, sound effects and music that together tell a story that the listener can recreate in detail in their mind. Its golden age globally was in the twenties, thirties and forties, at the height of radio, with its popularity continuing until the seventies in Chile. Worldwide, the most well-known radio theater piece is perhaps The War of the Worlds, written in 1938 by North American actor and director Orson Welles, which tells of an alien invasion’s impact on the world. It was so realistic that it caused widespread panic among its listeners, who thought the news was real, even though the story was based on the novel of the same name by H.G. Wells.

Radio theater in Chile: According to the Memoria Chilena site, the first radio theater piece in Chile was transmitted in 1932 on the now-defunct Universo station. It was called La enemiga and starred Maruja Cifuentes and Carlos Justiniano. Normally broadcast at midday, these stories were usually melodramatic and aimed at a female audience although, in the following decades and until 1970, radio theater was also fertile terrain for comedies and even suspense. Hogar dulce hogar, Residencial La Pichanga, La bandita de Firulete and the memorable Radiotanda with actress Ana González playing the part of ‘La Desideria’ were emblematic of their times. The most famous ones in the terror genre were El doctor Mortis and Lo que cuenta el viento.

–Take a look at the program of Casimiro Vico, primer actor, performed by the UC Theater in 1965.

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