Cepillín, a Clown Beloved Throughout Latin America, Is Lifeless at 75

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MEXICO CITY — Ricardo González Gutiérrez, the beloved Mexican clown referred to as Cepillín who was watched by generations of youngsters all through Latin America, died on March 8 in Mexico Metropolis. He was 75.

The trigger was cardiac arrest, stated his son and fellow performer Ricardo González Guajardo, who added that his father had not too long ago realized he had most cancers.

Identified for his cherry-red nostril and his black painted beard, Cepillín combined bodily comedy with track, dance and ventriloquism in performances on tv in addition to within the circus ring. His falsetto voice stuffed houses throughout Mexico, notably to the tune of his ever-popular model of the standard Mexican birthday track “Las Mañanitas.”

Over a half-century, Cepillín hosted TV exhibits broadcast from Mexico, bought thousands and thousands of copies of his albums of youngsters’s songs, and later drew thousands and thousands of viewers to his movies on TikTok and YouTube. And he toured Mexico and the USA with circus firms together with his personal and Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey, performing for everybody from drug cartel capos to former President Enrique Peña Nieto of Mexico.

By his account, nevertheless, it was his work ethic and never his expertise that made him a family title within the Spanish-speaking world, together with amongst Latinos in the USA.

“It’s not that I’m one of the best clown,” he stated in a 2018 interview on Mexico’s Imagen Televisión. “I’m the one which labored the toughest, that labored essentially the most.”

Ricardo González Gutiérrez was born on Feb. 7, 1946, within the northern metropolis of Monterrey. He was the third youngster of seven brothers and sisters. His father, Rubén González Flores, managed a ironmongery shop and labored as a radio presenter. His mom, Rebeca Gutiérrez de González, was a homemaker.

Mischievous and stressed as a baby, Cepillín had ambitions early on to be an artist, however his mother and father would have none of it. “In our home there was all the time a ‘no,’ a ‘no’ for the whole lot,” he advised Mexico’s TV Azteca in an interview broadcast this month. “I used to be trampled.”

Pressured by his mother and father, Ricardo enrolled within the dentistry program on the Autonomous College of Nuevo León. It turned out to be the unintended doorway to his performing profession. As a pupil he joined a tv marketing campaign to advertise dental hygiene amongst youngsters and got here up with the thought of portray his face in clown make-up to make them much less afraid of the dentist’s chair.

Inspired by their response, he started utilizing his clown persona offscreen as nicely, and Cepillín was born. (The title comes from the Spanish phrase for toothbrush.)

In 1971, he was invited to host his personal present for youngsters on an area TV station. After marrying María Aydé Guajardo, he moved to Mexico Metropolis in 1977 and was employed by the nationwide tv channel Televisa to star in his personal present. “El Present de Cepillín” ran for 3 years and was broadcast all through Latin America.

That 12 months he additionally recorded his first youngsters’s album — certainly one of greater than a dozen he would make in his profession, in types starting from disco to nation music, all the time delivered in his trademark falsetto.

Cepillín went on to seem on numerous native tv stations in Mexico and toured internationally with circus firms, together with his personal, El Circo de Cepillín.

He carried out in a stage version of “Aladdin” with the actress Salma Hayek years earlier than she made it to Hollywood, and appeared within the 1979 movie “Milagro en el Circo” (“Miracle on the Circus”), which featured the Mexican pop star Yuri.

Cepillín had three coronary heart assaults, the primary in 2005. His son Ricardo quickly determined to take to the stage and created his personal persona, Cepi, in homage to his father.

The following 12 months, having recovered, Cepillín started performing with each Cepi and his different son, Roberto González Guajardo, referred to as Franky, on one more TV present, “Cepillín Reside,” broadcast in his hometown, Monterrey.

Extra not too long ago, the youthful Mr. González helped his father seize an viewers of a more recent technology, performing with him and Franky on social media and on YouTube and TikTok. Cepillín had greater than 4.3 million followers on TikTok alone.

Along with his sons, he’s survived by his spouse of 48 years; his daughter, Aydé González Guajardo; his six siblings, Rubén, Jesús, Teresa, Rebeca, Ana and Gilberto; and 4 grandchildren.

In 2017, Cepillín was nominated for a Latin Grammy Award for greatest Latin youngsters’s album.

“He thought it was actually cool,” Ricardo González stated. “He was very happy that he continued to transcend into the current day.”

The album, Cepillín’s final, is titled “Gracias.”

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