Jamaican actress Ruth Samuels best known for her performance in the production Bashment Granny has died.
Samuels died over the weekend in Florida where she had been residing.
The beloved actress who was 64-years-old at the time of her passing suffered from a heart complication.
According to playwright an producer Everton Dawkins, Samuels was a pioneer in the roots play genre, having started out her career in acting at the Ward Theatre, later moving on to work with the iconic Ralph Holness.
“Ruth was foundation, coming from the days of the Ward Theatre,” said Dawkins.
Samuels played a supporting role in Holness’ 1988 hit production “Obeah Wedding” which she played alongside close friend and fellow actress, Joy Grandison.
She also played in ” Unda Mi Nose” “Mama Man” and later went on to write a few productions of her own.
” I knew her for many years, from when I started to work with Ralph, long time days,” veteran actor Maxwell Grant said, who further described Samuels as a hard worker.
” She did Bashment Granny with me, she was Miss P. When we were thinking of Bashment Granny we sent for her, as we knew immediately that she was perfect for the part , ” added Grant.
Following Bashment Granny, Samuels, migrated to the United States where she continued to put on small skits and even worked in stand-up comedy, while working part-time in the restaurant business.
“She has also done comedy in South Florida too. She is very good at comedy she use to do standup comedy,” said Grandison.
Friend and colleague Grandison told The Den it was Samuel’s boss in the restaurant business who made her aware of Ruth’s passing .
” I last spoke with her last Monday but I told her that I would call her back as I couldn’t talk, I was busy, ” added Grandison who said that it is her major regret, not knowing what Samuels had wanted to share with her.
Grandison went on to explain that she was Samuel’s main support in the United States as her children lived in Jamaica, adding that in recent times the actress had experienced difficulty walking due to poorly managed diabetes
While shocked and saddened by her passing, Samuels’ colleagues all agree that her role in Stage’s Bashment Granny was her biggest role, noting that the play introduced her to a younger audience.