The most obvious cultural expression of the amalgamation of peoples on São Tomé e Príncipe can be found in the island’s recreation of the Portuguese play «The Tragedy of the Marquis of Mantua and the Emperor Charlemagne». Written in the 16th century by the blind Madeiran poet Baltazar Dias, the play now exists in various adaptations in the Santomean socio-cultural environment; in Creole it takes on the title Tchiloli. The most distinctive aspect of the play is the stark contrasts that it elicits. The male actors narrate the Renaissance text while being dressed in European women’s clothing and wearing unique masks. The whole highly charged experience is an extravagant spectacle of music and dance, becoming what many describe as a symbolic meeting between African and European heritage. As well as enacting the play every year within the country, Tchiloli groups perform at local festivals both in Sao Tome and Principe and abroad
I’ve been working in a new on-line project – a weekly travel magazine in English about Portugal, which we launched in the apple store last week – so, if you have an iPad, search for PT ZINE (Portugal Magazine), you will find there our presentation number and two issues about Alfama (Lisbon) and Douro Valley. Tell me what do you think.
Big hug, André
If you want to take a look on the magazine:
You can see too: (click on PT Zine link)