OUR MISSION

Saudade is a creative platform for Portuguese and American artists to collaborate. 

 

1 - Saudade is the first and only theatre company in the United States devoted to discovering, translating and producing Portuguese works.

 

2 - Saudade is committed to bringing original American works to Portugal.

 

3 - Saudade partners with artists of all backgrounds to develop original and thought provoking work grounded in our Portuguese-American experience.

SAUDADE

souˈdädə/

[n.] a feeling of longing, melancholy, or nostalgia that is characteristic of the Portuguese.

OUR STORY

Living in New York City in 2014, Filipe Valle Costa and Diogo Martins launched the “Portuguese Table Series”, a monthly event where local artists of all backgrounds could meet and read notable works from Portuguese playwrights. Each time, Filipe and Diogo had to translate the selected plays from Portuguese to English, because they could not find published translations in the local theatre bookshops. They questioned whether any entities in the United States were translating and publishing Portuguese playwrights or producing Portuguese works for American audiences. As a result of the “Portuguese Table Series”, Yale DFA candidate Maria Inês Marques reached out to Filipe and Diogo, introducing them to acclaimed contemporary Portugal-based playwright and director, Mickaël de Oliveira. Recipient of the Maria Matos New Playwriting Award, Oliveira has written over 20 plays, which have been produced internationally and translated into several languages, including French, English, Spanish, and Slovak.

OUR WORK

In 2017, Saudade Theatre opened its first Equity production in New York City: the United States premiere of Mickaël de Oliveira’s “The Constitution”, translated by Maria Inês Marques and produced by Vanessa Varela. In 2018, Saudade Theatre opened the West Coast premiere of Mickaël de Oliveira’s “The Constitution” in Los Angeles, directed by Filipe Valle Costa and produced by Vanessa Varela. In 2019, Saudade Theatre presented its first original play, alongside playwright Mickaël de Oliveira and his Lisbon-based theatre company, Colectivo 84: "My Favorite Suicide" written by Mickaël de Oliveira and translated by Maria Inês Marques. In just two years, Saudade Theatre had debuted an international playwright and an original English translation of his work to audiences on both coasts of the United States.

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FILIPE VALLE COSTA

Founder & Co-Artistic Director

Lisbon-born, Filipe holds an M.F.A. in Theatre from the University of Florida. When Filipe arrived in NYC he quickly became aware of the absence of information and knowledge regarding Portuguese theatre in the United States, and decided to launch Saudade Theatre in 2014. The company's mission is to develop original work grounded in the Portuguese experience, as well as translating Portuguese playwrights. He is currently known for his series regular role in John Singleton's FX drama series Snowfall. Additional TV credits include: Chicago MedBlue Bloods, Gotham and Unicornland. Theatre credits include: Lilia (Rising Circle Theater Collective), Good Grief (Intar), Henry V (The Shakespeare Forum), and End Days (Hippodrome), to name a few.

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VANESSA VARELA

Executive Director

Born and raised in Miami, Vanessa received her B.S. in TV Production from the University of Florida. She launched her career in reality TV before moving to New York, where she worked as an Assistant Editor at Mackenzie Cutler and later was the Managing Director at Media2, where she produced unscripted TV, promos, graphics packages, and live event productions. She currently produces at Nathaniel Howe Studios in Beverly Hills. Vanessa is passionate about sharing art and experiences with her community, and is thrilled to expand Saudade Theatre's presence from NYC to LA.

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DIOGO MARTINS

Co-Artistic Director

Born and raised in Lisbon, Portugal. His gypsy soul and artistic aspirations brought him to New York where he has resided for over 10 years. He holds a MFA in Acting from the Actors Studio Drama School. Diogo is one of the proud Co-Artistic directors of Saudade Theatre, the only theatre company based in the United States solely devoted to the production of Portuguese works. He is also an original member of the Actors Theatre of New York and a member of the LAByrinth Theatre Intensive Ensemble 2014. Theatre Credits include: The Constitution (Under St. Marks, American premiere), Tennessee on the Hudson (The Box Theater), The Accident (The Kraine Theater, winner of the Best Drama Award at The Frigid Festival 2015), Gruesome Playground Injuries (Gibney Theater), to name a few. Besides his work in theatre, Diogo has been involved in a number of independent short films and has lent his voice to a series of other projects, most notably the audiobook version of José Saramago’s “Skylight”.

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BIBI COUCEIRO

Company Manager

Born and raised in Lisbon, Portugal Bibi is grateful she grew up with the culture, ocean and the sun by her side. She is now an actor based in New York City, where she graduated from The American Academy of Dramatic Arts and The Neighborhood Playhouse, intensive course. She also holds a BA in Theatre & Performance Studies from the University of Warwick, in the United Kingdom. Though, it was in the country of The Three Sisters, Russia where she truly found the interest for Theatre. Since then she has been majorly interested in creating work surrounding human rights, gender equality and Portuguese history. She is thankful for being a part of Saudade Theatre to help spread more Portuguese voices. Obrigada.​​

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PEDRO MARNOTO

Visiting Director

Pedro Marnoto’s work has ranged from fiction and documentary film to theatre and live video editing. Film work includes the short “Gu” (2015), official selection at the New York Portuguese Short Film Festival and the Caminhos do Cinema Português; and the documentary feature “Voices in the Fog“ (2018). For the stage, he directed Primary Colors' stage production of Neil LaBute's “The Shape of Things” (2011); and assistant directed Saudade Theatre's production of Mickaël de Oliveira's “The Constitution” (2017). In 2016, Pedro directed the music video for “Prom”, for Brooklyn-based band Cherry Coals’ debut EP. In the same year, he collaborated with pianist Renato Diz and singer Maria Quintanilla on the short film "Conversation II” (2016), for their album “Distance Chemistry”. They teamed up again in 2019, for the film-concert "At a Volume Only You Can Hear", that included live video editing; the show premiered as part of the first edition of RHI-Think, in Portugal, under the name “Porto, NY”. Pedro is currently working with Saudade Theatre on the production of the play "For the Sake of Dreaming", set to premiere in 2021.

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MARIA INÊS MARQUES

Visiting Dramaturg & Translator

Maria Inês Marques (b. 1990, Porto) is a DFA candidate in Dramaturgy at Yale School of Drama. She holds a BA degree in Languages, Literature and Culture from the Faculty of Arts, University of Porto. Her dramaturgy credits include: La Scène, by Valère Novarina (TeCA, Portugal); The Moors, by Jen Silverman (Yale Repertory Theatre, dir. Jackson Gay); Bulgaria! Revolt!, by Miranda Rose Hall and Elizabeth Dinkova; Altogether Reckless, dir. Chris Bayes (Yale School of Drama); José Rivera’s Cloud Tectonics and The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant, by Rainer Werner Fassbinder (Yale Cabaret); Neva, by Guillermo Calderón, dir. Kate Bergstrom (Brown University/Trinity Rep). She worked as managing editor for Theater (Yale University and Duke University Press). She has served as script reader for Theatre for a New Audience and Yale Repertory Theatre. Maria was the translator and dramaturg of the English language world premiere of Boris Yeltsin and The Constitution, by Mickaël de Oliveira (Yale Cabaret; Theatre Under St. Marks, NYC). She currently collaborates with the Portuguese company Colectivo 84. Maria’s writing has appeared in Theater and TDF Stages. Maria's review of Toshiki Okada’s God Bless Baseball earned her the John W. Gassner Memorial Award (2016).

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© 2020 Saudade Theatre