Proudly LGBT, full of desire to get started. The new director of the Dona Maria II National Theater prepares for a state of great pluralism
“It is a very powerful practice to be as close as possible to a state of utopia, and this is a place of power.” Pedro Benem takes over the new duties in November.
At 45, he assumes that the fact that he’s never run a house this big before doesn’t frighten him. “I accepted this appointment knowing that I always look for uncomfortable places, and had no experience in running a house of this size, but I accepted it with great confidence.” Pedro Benem, founder of Teatro Braga, is excited about this new challenge and eager to get down to business. “I came here as an artist, as someone who started here as a trainee, came back many times as a spectator, but also as an artist, and where I have always been very happy. I think I can do the best job possible.”
In the short intervention, after the presentation of the new season, which is still under the technical responsibility of Tiago Rodriguez, he explained what is coming.
“I hold political office, and this responsibility takes precedence over my own tastes, immediate desires, and personal interests, and I don’t want to program for those who share optional connections with me. I want cross-generational and transcendent programming.”
The promise of a great pluralistic mandate rather than sectarianism was confirmed, but not before a more personal aspect was taken, which he justified with these words.
“I came here as someone who takes pride in being part of the LGBT community, and who has learned how to make it a force, and really what it is, a strength, and I speak from that aspect of my identity, not to defend myself or to make any point, but because I believe in This sector of society, which is mine, there are lines of thought and vectors of action which at this moment seem to me most relevant and most inspiring, when we imagine future scenarios for society and for the artistic fabric.Programming is also the practice of getting as close as possible to a utopia, in the name of social progress and a more society Just as it is. A very powerful exercise, and for this place, and it is a place of strength, it is a wonderful exercise, the ability to do it.”
It’s still too early to talk about projects, but Pedro Penem spreads enthusiasm: “The Portuguese national scene is very vibrant and the National Theater should be a home to the image of this diversity, which is the envy of many countries, even with the greatest cultural investment”, and no Forget about the effects of the epidemic on the culture sector. “I also have a personal responsibility to theater artists who are experiencing the worst years of chronic danger in this pandemic, and it is up to TNDM to be a key factor in mitigating these devastating consequences.”
Finally, the inspiration for the succession of Thiago Rodriguez: “This theater is the house of the future, but it is also the house of memory, and the luck to receive from Thiago this revolutionary and inspiring legacy, I will fully respect this entire legacy, but of course I will also want to do it differently, and I look forward to Its debut, next November. I’m ready to be the host of this house.”
Tiago Rodrigues couldn’t be happier to hand the key to TNDM’s technical direction to Pedro Penim and the new manager thanks him for the “revolutionary” work he’s just inherited. These were not just circumstantial words, the ones I heard. From the last show to the first act, the show continues.
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