[n.] a feeling of longing, melancholy, or nostalgia that is characteristic of the Portuguese.
Saudade Theatre is the first and only theatre company in the United States dedicated to producing original and thought-provoking work grounded in the Portuguese-American consciousness.
The absence of Portuguese plays on American bookshelves was the catalyst for Saudade’s formation in 2014, with the intention of discovering, translating and producing Portuguese works for American audiences. The first initiative came to be known as Portuguese Table Series, a monthly reading of works from Portugal and its diaspora, as translated by Saudade resident artists. Through these gatherings, Saudade was introduced to the works of acclaimed contemporary Portuguese playwright Mickaël de Oliveira. In 2017, Saudade staged its first production: the U.S. Premiere of The Constitution by Oliveira in New York City at Under St. Marks Theatre. Broadway World heralded the performance as “an intense, thought-provoking and overall fascinating show” and Culture Catch declared, “For Saudade Theatre, The Constitution is a compelling founding document.” Since then, Saudade Theatre has expanded its original mission to embrace the development of new work in collaboration with multicultural artists in a quest to understand our Portuguese-American identity.
Saudade Theatre has overseen the development and production of several new works, including U.S. and World Premieres. Saudade Theatre is proudly in residence with FRIGID New York.