Mayor of Almada

Imagined around the seasons, the Festival de Música dos Capuchos 2023 brings together composers who, for over more than 4 centuries, have explored this concept, from Vivaldi to Tchaikovsky, and Piazzolla to Philip Glass. From these seasons – historical, philosophical or seasonal, other artists and other times are invoked. It is through the exploration of this relationship between the passage of time and nature – human, divine, natural – in the inseparable intersection between form and content, that the work of these artists becomes a cultural ritual of contemplation and discovery.

Over the last three editions, the Festival has also been asserting itself as a space for sharing and dialogue, celebrating the written word is with the evocation of great names in literature. “Capuchos Talks”, curated by Carlos Vaz Marques, dedicates this edition to the centenary of the births of Mário Cesariny de Vasconcelos, Natália Correia, and Eugénio de Andrade. Constantly looking for improvement and diversification, this year will also mark the debut of the “Capuchos Masterclasses”, guided by internationally renowned teachers, pre-concert talks called “Capuchos Preludes”, moderated by João Almeida, and the “Capuchos Walk” that will take us through the Protected Landscape of the Fossil Cliff of Costa da Caparica.

Extending its program to several venues, this edition will have concerts at Convento dos Capuchos and in unprecedented way 3 concerts at the Municipal Theater Joaquim Benite. The Festival once again welcomes sets of international reference and excellence, with particular emphasis on the Venice Baroque Orchestra “I Solisti Veneti”, the Budapest Chamber Orchestra “Franz Liszt” and the Hermès Quartet. Many great international soloists will step onto the Festival's stages, including violinists Mario Hossen, Jack Liebeck and Esther Hoppe, singers Lena Belkina, Ana Karina Rossi and Deniz Uzun, cellist Christian Poltéra, clarinetist Pascal Moraguès, pianist Marianna Shirinyan, and the legendary North-American pianist Stephen Kovacevich.

The commitment to national excellence is a hallmark of the Festival, which will feature the Officium Ensemble choir, the DSCH Schostakovich Ensemble, as well as new musical projects, 100 Caminhos, and Juventus Ensemble, bringing together young and renowned Portuguese musicians. I cannot help but thank you for the tribute proposed to António Victorino d'Almeida, - my father for those who do not know - with the Carta Branca concert, which celebrates his 70 years of artistic activity. I confess to have hesitated when I read the proposal, but as the programming is the sole responsibility and within the absolute freedom of Filipe Pinto Ribeiro, I considered that under no circumstance should I interfere in order not to set any precedent.

The Festival de Música dos Capuchos occupies an undeniable place in the national cultural panorama, while at the same time not hesitating to extend its program throughout the municipality, calling this territory of many and all who live here and visit to take part in this cultural ritual.

A special thanks to Filipe Pinto-Ribeiro, who is responsible for constructing the Festival and the Artistic Direction and to Companhia de Teatro de Almada, which this year joins the team, as well as to the municipal cultural services that make this great dream possible.

A heartfelt thank you, as well, to the main sponsor and partner of the event, the BPI Foundation/La Caixa, for continuing to invest in promoting Portuguese music and artists.

Inês de Medeiros

Mayor of Almada