top of page


Casa de Camilo - Famalicão: 4pm

Guided tour of Casa de Camilo
Exhibition opening - Camilo in Music

Curator: Rodrigo Teodoro de Paula

Guest Speaker: Elisa Lessa (ELACH - University of Minho)

Detail of the frontispiece of the Brazil-Portugal Magazine of 16 March 1907

..But I believe that music has been able to transfigure man by breaking the foundations that bind him to the dust, redeeming him from earthly misery, breathing into him an ether that divanises him, an electricity that communicates him to pure spirits.

Camilo Castelo Branco

Inspired by Alfredo Pinto Sacavém's "Camilo in Music" (1926), this small exhibition presents a selection of objects - musical instruments, books, printed scores and musical manuscripts, concert programmes, reviews, etc. - that refer to Camilo Castelo Branco's relationship with music, whether by incorporating it into his memoirs, novels or his critical reflections on the operatic shows he attended at the Real Teatro de São João between 1849 and 1850, published in various periodicals of the time. Some of his poems inspired songs conceived by composers such as Vianna da Motta, Carlos Dubini, Gustavo Romanoff Salvini and Tomás Borba, among others. Alfredo Keil composed his opera Serrana based on Camilo's short story Como ela o amava (1863), which was staged at the Real Teatro de São Carlos in Lisbon in 1899. The famous novel Amor de Perdição (1862) was given an operatic version by João Arroios and premiered to great acclaim at the Real Teatro de São Carlos in 1907. The importance of Camilo Castelo Branco's literary work also inspired composer and pianist Eurico Thomaz de Lima to compose, in 1944, a fantasia for piano and orchestra, entitled "Depois de uma leitura de Camilo" (After a reading by Camilo) (listen to the audio below). In 1990, as part of the centenary of the writer's death, composer Fernando Lapa premiered Enredos - à memória de Camilo (1990), also for piano and orchestra, at the Casa de Camilo. Under the curatorship of Rodrigo Teodoro de Paula, in partnership with the Casa de Camilo, the FIO - International Organ Festival of Vila Nova de Famalicão and Santo Tirso includes this exhibition in its programme, making Camilo Castelo Branco's legacy known in a special way in musical art. The event also includes a conference on the subject by Professor Elisa Lessa (ELACH - University of Minho).

Associate Professor at the Institute of Letters and Human Sciences and Researcher at the Centre for Humanistic Studies at the University of Minho, ELISA LESSA has a PhD in Musical Sciences from Universidade Nova with the thesis "Os Mosteiros Beneditinos Portugueses (séculos XVII a XIX): Centres of Musical Teaching and Practice", a Master's Degree in Musical Sciences from the University of Coimbra and a Degree in Musical Sciences from Universidade Nova. From 2004 to 2007, she was Director of the Revista de Educação Musical and President of the Associação Portuguesa de Educação Musical (APEM). She has published scientific articles in specialised Portuguese and foreign journals. In the field of Historical Musicology and Cultural Studies, she published Património Musical do Bom Jesus do Monte (2018); De Créditos firmados: as bandas de música em Braga nos séculos XIX e XX (2019). He co-edited Heritage and Devotion (2018); Listening and Writing Soundscapes (2020), Landscapes and Heritage: Sound, Music and Architecture (2022); "Music in the Brotherhood of Our Lady of Sorrows and St Anne of the Congregated. 18th to 20th centuries. Splendour and Dignity" (2022). She is a member of the project The Contribution of Confraternities and Guilds to the Urban Soundscape in the Iberian Peninsula, c.1400 - c.1700, coordinated by Professor Tess Knighton. She is President of the Suonart Cultural Association and has also developed an intense artistic activity, having been the founder and Artistic Director of the Minho Chamber Orchestra. In the 1990s she founded the Companhia da Música de Braga, a specialised artistic teaching conservatoire, and was its Pedagogical Director, on a voluntary basis, for around 30 years. In 2020 he received the Silver Medal from Braga City Council.

Elisa-Lessa FOTO.jpeg
bottom of page