|Birth: ||Jun. 30, 1923|
La Habana, Cuba
|Death: ||Mar. 15, 2007|
Obituary from the 03/17/2007 edition of the Miami Herald
Cuban entertainer, `queen of rhumba'
BY ARTURO ARIAS-POLO
El Nuevo Herald
Legendary Cuban dancer-singer Blanquita Amaro died Thursday at Baptist Hospital in Miami of a heart attack. She was 83.
For more than half a century, her versatility allowed her to star in musical revues, drama and comedy, ever since her 1939 film debut in Estampas Habaneras (Havana Scenes).
Thereafter, her name led the casts of 23 films she made in Mexico, Spain, Cuba and Argentina, where she shared credits with celebrities like Pedro Infante in Scandal of Stars (1944), Tin Tan in Summer Hotel (1944) and Luis Sandrini in The Seducer (1950).
Amaro was born on June 30, 1923, in San Antonio de los Baños, Havana province. At 9, she won a singing contest at the Payret Theater in Havana and later appeared in dramatic and musical shows in a tent-theater in her neighborhood.
She left Cuba for Panama in 1959, and settled there with her husband and manager, Orlando Villegas, and their daughter, Idania. For 10 years, she hosted a daily television program and participated in many benefit shows.
A NEW LIFE
In 1968, Amaro moved to Miami. Here, she had her own theater, hosted the TV programs The Blanquita Amaro Show and Say It in Mime, and appeared in numerous shows staged by the Pro Arte Grateli Society.
''Blanquita was a great lady who honored us with her appearances,'' said Pili de la Rosa, a founder of the Grateli society. ``She was a marvelous actress who conquered audiences in South America. No doubt, her death is a great loss for Cuban art.''
Amaro's ability to adapt to any medium allowed her to host programs at Miami radio stations, such as La Poderosa and Cadena Azul, for many years.
In Miami in 1980, she made her last movie, How Hot Miami Is! with Olga Guillot, Raymundo Hidalgo-Gato and Pedro Romàn. She also won plaudits for her performance in the play Stolen Lives, and in the comedy The Close Friends, with Griselda Nogueras and Néstor Cabell.
In the 1970s, she had her own theater on Southwest 57th Avenue. There, she starred in My Husband's Lover, with her daughter Idania, Germán Barrios and Miguel de Grandy Jr. Idania died four years ago.
De Grandy remembered Amaro on Friday as ``the queen of rhumba, a very charming and spontaneous artist.''
For 28 years, Amaro presented Cuba Sings and Dances, a variety show directed by her daughter Idania and produced by Manolo del Cañal, her son-in-law, at the Miami-Dade County Auditorium. Such popular artists as Olga Guillot,Tongolele, Maria Marta Serra Lima and Xiomara Alfaro appeared in that show.
One of Amaro's final public appearances was on Jan. 27, at Miami's Artime Theater. She received an ovation from the public at a concert by soprano Alina Sánchez, who dedicated the concert to her.
Our Lady of Mercy Catholic Cemetery
Created by: JR
Record added: Mar 16, 2007
Find A Grave Memorial# 18481067