Our address in Porto is: Rua do Almada 277, 4050-038 Porto (view map)
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This website was designed in collaboration by Marta Areosa and José Capela.
Jorge Andrade, artistic director of mala voadora, is an actor, director, playwright and event programmer (in that order). He teaches at IPL School of Theater and Cinema.
José Capela, artistic director of mala Voadora, is an architect and stage designer. He is a professor at the Universidade do Minho’s School of Architecture, Art and Design, and also a researcher at Lab2PT.
João Fonte, technical director of mala voaodora, is an architect. He has knowledge and experience in the various technical areas of stage design. Together with José Capela, he is the author of the Campilhas architectural project.
Joana Mesquita Alves, production director of mala voadora, is an architect, has worked as a producer in cinema and, now, theater. She’s an excellent cook.
Sofia Freitas, producer, has been working with us since she finished her training. She is based on the Rua do Almada building. She has revealed the ability to fulfill very diverse roles within the company.
Cláudia Teixeira is very experienced in theater production. She collaborates part-time with mala voadora, as well as with other structures. Now, she’s busy being a mother.
Inês Soares Lopes, producer, is particularly committed to accessibility issues. In her spare time she dances Bhangra.
Rita Monteiro, actress and cultural technician, has been in charge of all mala voadora activities in
Santiago do Cacém municipality.
Luís Rabaçal, technician, supports the company’s productions and Porto’s programming.
Mala voadora is a cultural organization whose action encompasses both arts and reflective thought. At its genesis lies the conception of theater shows but, slowly, mala voadora expanded its range of activities, which began to include the work of other artists, organising meetings and training activities, aiding people with difficulty accessing artistic practices, testing of post-disciplinary production-related topics, books, dinners and parties, among others.
Sometimes, we focus on socially relevant issues; other times, we wander among things that may seem devoid of a recognizable topic (it’s a different type of politics). In order to make all this happen, we have benefitted from the support of institutional partners and funding entities to whom we owe a lot. But we have been making a large investment effort in two equipments of our own: one located in the city of Porto; and another in a rural setting, next to the Campilhas dam, in Santiago do Cacém municipality.
Mala voadora was started in 2003 by Jorge Andrade and José Capela and, since then, it has enjoyed the collaboration of many people, from many areas, several of which have ended up becoming part of our DNA (we owe it to them). The diversity of mala voadora’s shows also stems from the diversity of national and international artists invited to its projects, which can thus be closer to cinema or a concert, a political rally, a comic, a documentary or a ball.
We have already performed in several countries: Australia; Germany; Belgium; Bosnia Herzegovina; Brazil; Cape Verde; Scotland; Slovenia; United States of America; Finland; France; Greece; England; Italy; Lebanon; Lithuania; Luxembourg; Poland and the Czech Republic.
mala voadora is located in the building numbered 277 and 283 in Rua do Almada, scarce meters away from Porto City Hall (view map). Júlio José de Brito, a renowned architect and engineer from Porto, conceived it by the end of the 1930s (by the same time as he also designed the Rivoli Theater) to be a warehouse for iron and steel. It is an unusual building in the context of the city – a clearly modernist work inserted in the continuity of traditional housing in the center of Porto. It is also unusual because it was designed as a “vertical warehouse”, with several floors, contrary to the usual horizontal development of this type of facility. Since the plot was relatively small, the required storage area had to be reached by adding the area of overlapping floors and, given the weight of the metal, this required a strong structure. As Brito explained in his architecture classes, for him this work had been a laboratory for the use of reinforced concrete. The structure was calculated for a load of 6 tons/m2.
Currently, the building has very diverse uses, consisting of: (1) Room H – a black-box with retractable bench with capacity for 50 people; (2) Room G – multipurpose room, with bar area and sanitary facilities, including facilities for people with reduced mobility; (3) the “Swimming Pool” – a multipurpose terrace with a support area, (4) two autonomous studios with capacity to accommodate up to 4 people each.
The Campilhas Cultural Center is located next to the Campilhas Dam, in the civil parish of Cercal de Alentejo, municipality of Santiago do Cacém (view map). As a whole, this facility will include a set of six residential buildings, each with a work space with different characteristics, from a large auditorium to a small ruin, including spaces for a sound studio and a painting studio. Since these work spaces have independent entrances, the occupancy of the buildings can result in multiple different combinations, according to the needs of the various teams in residence or the scheduled events. The project is based on sustainability principles, whether through the choice of construction systems used on buildings built from scratch (built with soil from the plot itself), or through the recycling of prefabricated buildings. It also uses air conditioning techniques rooted in local tradition, renewable energy, roofs made with photo voltaic panels and reservoirs for water reuse.
The project was designed by architects João Fonte and José Capela, with the participation of Jorge Andrade. At the moment, only part of the complex has been completed – four autonomous buildings equipped with kitchens – with a total of 8 rooms. The rehearsal room is around 100 m2.
This facility is the epicenter of a wide range of activities that mala voadora is already working on, reaching a great variety of members of the local community. The project has focused on those with less access to cultural practices – students from particularly isolated schools, day center users, unemployed people or people in the process of social reintegration, teenagers, etc. – while bringing artists with international recognition to this territory, to work directly with local communities. By adapting and taking advantage of its “rurality”, the program also includes environmentalism and landscape in its guiding principles. Ecology is thus taken as a subject of artists’ practices and various training actions.