Ariano Suassuna – Brazil’s best playwright


Ariano Suassuna (born João Pessoa, 1927) is a Brazilian playwright and author.

Four of his plays have been filmed and he is considered one of Brazil’s greatest living playwrights. He is also an important regional writer doing various novels set in the Northeast of Brazil. He received an honorary doctorate at a ceremony performed at a circus.

His Plays

  • Auto da Compadecida, (1959);
  • O Castigo da Soberba, (1960);
  • O Casamento Suspeitoso, (1961);
  • Uma Mulher Vestida de Sol, (1964);
  • O Rico Avarento, (1964);
  • O Santo e a Porca, (1964);
  • Pena e a Lei, (1974);
  • Alto da Boa Preguiça, (1982).

On the first play, Auto da Compadecida, its probably the most famous he has written and it was turned into a movie in the last several years. Just a side note for those wishing to see it…It is set in the Northeast and uses many regionalisms and the film is a bit slapstick, not to mention they make fun of Northeasterners. Even I had a hard time understanding what made this film so good in the minds of many Brazilians for they absolutely loved it. That being said, I do plan to see it again to see if my opinion changes.

As far as Suassuna, he draws very large crowds when he gives speeches at universities these days. Unfortunately, on Youtube, much of his words get a bit distorted due to the microphone he uses and the acoustics of the places he speaks in. Natives shouldn’t have a problem understanding him though.

Here’s a short article on Suassuna in English, found on Varig Magazine (homepage).

5 thoughts on “Ariano Suassuna – Brazil’s best playwright

  1. Ariano Suassuna eh simplesmente maravilhoso!!
    me acabo de rir com as aulas-paletras dele!!!
    uma pessoa rico de cultura brasileira!!! um grande exemplo!

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