Out of the Wings

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Germán Luco Cruchaga

Personal information
Surname: Luco Cruchaga
First name: Germán
Born: 1894, , Chile
Died: 1936

Germán Luco Cruchaga was a journalist and a novelist, as well as a playwright.  He was born into a poor yet aristocratic family, and so was familiar with traversing the upper and lower levels of Chilean society.

Luco Cruchaga gleaned inspiration for his drama and narratives from his in-depth knowledge of the landscapes and peoples of his native Chile, travelling the country in search of characters and their stories.


Germán Luco Cruchago’s work is characterised thematically by his explorations of various oppositions: urban and rural, the city and the provinces, the aristocracy and the working class, opulence and degradation.  Through these explorations Luco Cruchaga’s builds a detailed portrait of Chilean society and national identity.


Germán Luco Cruchaga is regarded as the principal exponent of naturalismo criollista, a version of realism which pays close attention to the historical, geographical and social specificities of independent Latin America.   His theatre is therefore costumbrista in the sense that it derives from the closely-observed reality of 1920s southern Chile.  However, although Luco Cruchaga’s theatre has a distinctly national flavour, the play La viuda de Apablaza bears the mark of melodrama and of classical drama with its archetypal narrative which recalls Racine's Phèdre.

Plays in the database
Other works
  • Luco Cruchaga, Germán. 1979. Amo y señor in Teatro. Santiago, Nascimento (in Spanish)

  • Luco Cruchaga, Germán. 1979. Bailabuén in Teatro. Santiago, Nascimento (in Spanish)

Useful reading and websites
  • Barrietas, Raúl. 1974. ‘Relación mítica entre el campesino y la tierra en tres dramas chilenas’, Antar, 1.1, 14-25 (in Spanish)

  • Durán-Cerda, Julio. 1981. ‘Germán Luco Cruchaga y el teatro chileno moderno’, Texto Crítico, 7, 22-3 (in Spanish)

  • Merino Reyes, Luis. 1986. ‘Aproximación a Germán Luco Cruchaga y su viuda de Apablaza’, Literatura Chilena, 10.2.3, 21-2 (in Spanish)

Entry written by Gwendolen Mackeith. Last updated on 23 November 2011.

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