Darkness in Sao Paulo

Darkness in Sao Paulo


norman lebrecht

April 08, 2019

One of the most successful musical cities in South America is in deep gloom after the governor, João Doria, ordered a statewide 23% cut in the art budget.

We hear that the São Pedro Theatre, the state opera house, will shut for half of next season and that OSESP, the São Paulo Symphony Orchestra, will make deep cuts.

There was a demonstration yesterday against the cuts on Paulista Avenue.


  • EAM says:

    The fact is that Mr. Doria, in the eagerness to support big companies in decline like General Motors, withdraws money from the Culture. More cars, less knowledge. Strange choice…. Shame on you, Mr. Doria.

  • PB says:

    Actually the state opera house is the Theatro Municipal (correctly shown on the photo….) The Theatro Saõ Pedro is a much smaller theatre with an already very low budget. What is particularly sad is that this small theatre with its limited resources was able to provide very high quality work for its loyal audiences. These cuts to an already miserly budget are appalling, especially in the light of the waste and fiscal corruption in a country that otherwise has so much potential………

  • John Smith says:

    That’s so incredibly sad. The same thing is happening in South Africa these days, where the politicians are stealing BILLIONS and cutting funding to the orchestras.

  • Edgar says:

    Where Capitalism runs rampant, cultural decay follows suit.

    “Ill fares the land,
    to hastening ills a prey,
    where wealth accumulates,
    but men decay”

    Oliver Goldstone, 1770

  • HP says:

    The picture shows the Municipal Opera House of São Paulo, already under fund cuts and a difficult situation. The São Pedro Opera House is the State one, that already suffered deep cuts in funds. In the last years we lost, only from the State Culture: the professional Symphonic Band, the contemporary group Camerata Aberta, the Cultura Radio Orchestra, several minorities, dance, theater and multidisciplinary calls and much more. The Culture sector of the State is already operating way below its needs. The metropolitan area of São Paulo alone has more than 20 million people and is the financial heart of South America, if I’m not mistaken. This 23% cut means the end of the São Pedro Opera House, Museums, music schools and lots of social projects. This is unacceptable. They should INVEST more, not less.