Happy birthday, Ruth de Souza!
The present Doodle observes Brazilian actress Ruth de Souza, who is widely considered one of the first Black theatre actors throughout the entire history of Brazil. With performances in theater, TV, and film, Souza made the way for future Afro-Brazilian entertainers.
Brought into the world on this day in 1921 in Rio De Janeiro, Ruth de Souza aspired to be an actor since early on. As a teen, she joined Rio’s Black Experimental Theater, a project established in 1944 to fight against racial discrimination and open entryways for Afro-Brazilian ability in the performing arts.
Cast in 1945 as an Indigenous woman in the play “The Emperor Jones,” Souza became the principal Black actor to grace the phase of Rio de Janeiro’s Municipal Theater.
She made her film debut in 1948, and not so much as after 10 years, the Venice Film Festival assigned Souza for Best Actress for her 1953 performance in “Sinhá Moça” (“The Landowner’s Daughter”)— making her the first Brazilian actress to get a international award nomination.
In addition to the more than 30 movies she appeared in both at home and abroad, Souza had a prolific career in TV, acting in more than 20 soap operas.
In 2004, the Gramado Film Festival, one of the biggest film festivals in Brazil, granted Best Actress to Souza for her part in the film of that very year: “Filhas Do Vento” (“Daughters of Wind”).
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