On June 5, 1898, the most influential and popular poet in 20th century Spanish literature was born in Fuente Vaqueros, Granada, Spain.
Between his tours, Federico García Lorca arrived in Buenos Aires on October 13, 1933. He had received an invitation from Lola Membrives and her husband, the Spanish businessman Juan Reforzo, for the premiere of the play “Bodas de Sangre” at the Avenida theater. , which had great popular success.
It was his third trip to South America and his first to this city. His stay was going to be short, but enough to give some interviews, meet with colleagues and promote his beloved popular and traveling theater company that he directed in Spain with Eduardo Ugarte, La Barraca.
But the poet fell in love with the city of Buenos Aires, and experienced great success with his work, which, throughout the six months he stayed in Buenos Aires, he had the opportunity to direct, and it was performed more than one hundred and fifty times. He also directed the works: “Mariana Pineda”, “La zapatera prodigiosa”, “El retablillo de don Cristóbal” and an adaptation of “La dama boba” by Lope de Vega.
During this time he had the opportunity to give several conferences and make new friends, such as the writer Pablo Neruda, who in those years held the position of consul for his country in Argentina, and with whom the Spaniard forged a close relationship. He also had the opportunity to meet the Argentine writer Ricardo Molinari, the Mexican writer Salvador Novo and the poet Pablo Suero.
During his stay in the city, Federico García Lorca stayed at the famous Hotel Castelar, located at Av. De Mayo 1152, and remained in the establishment until March 1934. In 2003, room 704, which was occupied by the poet, was set by the Government of the City of Buenos Aires, in tribute to the historic visitor.
During his stay, García Lorca was a regular participant in the “Signo” club, which operated in the basement of the hotel. Artists and writers participated in this club, such as Norah Lange, Oliverio Girondo and Alfonsina Storni, among others. There they entertained García Lorca, on the occasion of the premiere of his work.
He was also a continuous participant in the clubs that were held at the Café Tortoni, located at Av. De Mayo 825, with artists such as Quinquela Martín, Juan de Dios Filiberto, Pascual de Rogatis, and also Alfonsina Storni, among others. Alfonsina would later dedicate a poem to him, “Portrait of García Lorca”, published in her book “World of Seven Wells”, in 1934.
Seeing him having a coffee at Tortoni, walking through Tigre, walking along Corrientes Avenue or Florida Street, became everyday images. He gave many interviews and his presence was constant in the media of the time.
After his long stay in Buenos Aires, he had another great stay in Montevideo (Uruguay), where he finished writing a couple of works (possibly Yerma) and had contact with local artists, such as Juana de Ibarbourou.
It is said that after these trips through Latin America, which were resoundingly successful, he managed to succeed professionally and, thanks to this, achieved economic independence.
When García Lorca returned to Spain in 1934, he maintained a high creative pace: he finished works such as “Yerma”, “Doña Rosita la Spinella”, “La casa de Bernarda Alba” and “Llanto por Ignacio Sánchez Mejías”. It is also said that he reviewed works such as “Poeta en Nueva York”, “Diván del Tamarit” and “Suites”. He then made a trip to Barcelona to direct some of his plays, recite his poems and give lectures. He also visited Valencia and continued performing plays with his theater company La Barraca.
Federico García Lorca died at the age of 38 in Granada, Spain, on August 18, 1936, persecuted and shot by the Franco regime.
His works continue to be performed and his legacy is highly valued to this day.