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

by -96 views

MEXICO CITY — Ricardo González Gutiérrez, the beloved Mexican clown generally known 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, mentioned his son and fellow performer Ricardo González Guajardo, who added that his father had not too long ago discovered he had most cancers.

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

Over a half-century, Cepillín hosted TV reveals broadcast from Mexico, offered tens of millions of copies of his albums of youngsters’s songs, and later drew tens of millions of viewers to his movies on TikTok and YouTube. And he toured Mexico and the US 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, nonetheless, it was his work ethic and never his expertise that made him a family identify within the Spanish-speaking world, together with amongst Latinos in the US.

“It’s not that I’m the perfect clown,” he mentioned in a 2018 interview on Mexico’s Imagen Televisión. “I’m the one which labored the toughest, that labored probably the most.”

Ricardo González Gutiérrez was born on Feb. 7, 1946, within the northern metropolis of Monterrey. He was the third baby 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 toddler, Cepillín had ambitions early on to be an artist, however his dad and mom would have none of it. “In our home there was at all times a ‘no,’ a ‘no’ for all the pieces,” he advised Mexico’s TV Azteca in an interview broadcast this month. “I used to be trampled.”

Pressured by his dad and mom, 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 effectively, and Cepillín was born. (The identify 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 yr he additionally recorded his first youngsters’s album — one in all greater than a dozen he would make in his profession, in types starting from disco to nation music, at all times delivered in his trademark falsetto.

Cepillín went on to look on varied 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 subsequent yr, having recovered, Cepillín started performing with each Cepi and his different son, Roberto González Guajardo, generally known as Franky, on one more TV present, “Cepillín Dwell,” broadcast in his hometown, Monterrey.

Extra not too long ago, the youthful Mr. González helped his father seize an viewers of a more moderen era, 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 finest Latin youngsters’s album.

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

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

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *