Cineteatro São Brás undergoing life-saving revamp
On December 21st, 1952, the Cineteatro São Brás opened its doors with a showing of the romantic classic, ‘Duas Causas,’ with Artur Semedo and the locally born actress, Mariana Vilar.
Some 66 years later, there again is cause for celebration as the building is undergoing a revamp costing around €100,000, injecting new live into the old building.
The stage area is being upgraded and made safe, there is to be a new projection screen, automatic curtains and new equipment to ensure the building can continue as intended at the heart of the São Brás de Alportel community.
The investment is part of the Urban Action and Regeneration Plan being auctioned by the Council which expects to receive 65% back from the European Community under CRESC 2020.
“In the service of culture, the Cineteatro São Brás has been for the last 66 years and will continue to be, the main stage for the great moments of community life in São Brás. It is a meeting place, a space for debate and reflection, a stage for a wide variety of shows and occupies a very special space the heart of the Sao-Brasenses,” gushed a Council statement.
The Cineteatro was the idea of a group of friends who loved cinema and created the Unidos company to get the Cineteatro built and operating. They decided that São Brás de Alportel needed a central arts venue and on December 21, 1952, locals queued to watch ‘Duas Causas’ and its famous ‘staring at the full moon with fishing boats in the background,’ scene which, despite the schmaltsy music, still gets audiences, every time.
The film had its debut on November 25, 1952, at the Trindade cinema in Porto with great praise from critics. Its Algarve showing in São Brás, just 26 days later, was received with great pride and acclaim, especially for ‘the local girl made good,’ Mariana Vilar.