Relationship between Raul and Fidel Castro – 2 brothers

We can do with a song sung by Raul about the relationship between Raul and Fidel.

Fidel is older than Raul but illegitimate as he was born out of wedlock. They both grew up in the country allowed to roam free for much of his early life. This helped provide him with the physical strength and courage necessary for revolution, but on the other hand he lacked social polish, his manners weren’t the most refined and he couldn’t dance and so on. He was teased when he was sent to school for his country bumpkin manners and for being a ‘bastard’. He got into trouble at school for always thinking he knew best – better than his teachers and the entire Catholic church. He was brash and outwardly confident. But everyone has their insecurities and perhaps Fidel had something to prove, some insecurities as a result of being laughed at in school and the stigma of being illegitimate. It might be that Fidel’s drive to win at all costs stems from those early insecurities and desire to prove himself. His father had 5 legitimate children with his wife, but then had an affair with a servant and had several children with her. So Fidel must have had the experience of being considered of lesser status than his older siblings and this plus his early experiences of poverty and being jeered at in school might have left him with a burning desire to show he was better than everyone else. Fidel’s father eventually married Fidel’s mother and so Raul was born in wedlock and so not illegtimate.

Fidel always insisted on getting his own way. When his father said no to him driving a car, he threatened to set it on fire. Fidel also threatened to set the family home on fire if they didn’t let him go to the school he wanted. He was very strong willed and would agree to any bet (for example he cycled into a wall and injured himself severely as a result of a bet at school). Because of these exploits they called him ‘el loco’ – the crazy one.

While Fidel excelled at school (despite having been expelled once for bad behaviour), and was considered highly intelligent, Raul did not do so well and was not a brilliant student. Fidel was always the leader, bold, brash, confident, brave. Raul tended to follow Fidel. While Fidel was good at strategic leadership and seeing the long-term plan, he was poor on detail and relied on Raul for organisational details. Raul spent much of the time in Fidel’s shadow. Less charismatic, but loyal. You can find out more about Fidel by looking at http://fidelthemusical.org/song-about-fidel-castro/

In the final scenes of act/musical 2 as we get to modern day Cuba (not written yet) where Raul is considering taking over from Fidel (2006),  Raul can consider how his strengths and weaknesses match against Fidel’s. Look at songs such as ‘the wind beneath my wings’ for inspiration https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jorJh8DTMVM. You could also have a song sung by Raul towards the end of act/musical 2 when Fidel is losing heart after Celia has died and Cuba is going through the special period when they have no resources and Raul can help perk Fidel up – see scene 22b

A possible option could be a song by Raul to sum up Fidel’s ambition and their relationship or focus on the relationship between Raul and Fidel. This song might show what it is like to be the younger brother. Raul seemed to have been content to follow in Fidel’s slipstream, always loyal, always supportive, in awe of Fidel’s leadership abilities and confidence and happy to be part of Fidel’s schemes. But Raul had strengths too and perhaps he didn’t always feel appreciated. In the early scenes during their first argument (see scene 8), there is room for a song that gives us an indication of what motivates Fidel and the relationship between the brothers. Raul could say he cautioned Fidel to take more time planning the attack on the barracks but Fidel didn’t listen and so many lives were lost. Could this be a turning point where Raul asks Fidel to start to value him for what he can offer, and see Raul more as just a loyal shadow. Such a song could be reprised in musical 2 when Raul takes over from Fidel in 2006