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Because we believe in the future, we make culture present.

What saves us? We begin our programme for this different Christmas with a question.

There certainly won’t be one single answer or universal agreement. But we know (and believe) that literature, music, dance and cinema play a fundamental part in what unites us and makes us what we are.

So, we’ve challenged more than 30 names from a variety of artistic fields to share their hopes, desires (and their daydreams, why not?) in short videos we’ll be sharing throughout the month of December in a virtual advent calendar. At the same time every day, we’ll open a window on someone’s world.

We’ll also be presenting three meetings with artists who, through literature, will help us look for answers about salvation through Art, Love and the Other.

Music is the soul of this programme, in a year when we’ve decided to take our Christmas concerts to various venues across the city which have seen their activity abruptly cut back. In December 2020, we’ll be taking to the stages of some of the city’s most iconic concert halls, such as the Coliseu de Lisbon, Capitólio, Teatro Tivoli and Teatro do Bairro. We do so with the audience in mind, as these are venues which allow us to comply with all public health guidelines. But we’re also thinking of the dozens of professionals who we want to continue working so they can have a happier Christmas – not just musicians, but all the technicians and support teams who ensure the magic happens.

There’s no doubt that this will be a different Christmas, but we won’t let our traditions disappear. We adapt, invent, resist. From the heart up, we’ll be captivated, live or online, by songs which for centuries have immersed us in transcendence – for a few hours or for the rest of our lives.

Every day we’ll continue to try to alleviate the weight of these leaden days through music, poetry, literature and theatre.

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