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PhD Student
Departamento de Comunicação e Arte | Universidade de Aveiro
Campus Universitário de Santiago
3810-193 Aveiro
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Tel: (+351) 234 370 389 (ext. 23700)


Gustavo Afonso is a Portuguese pianist born in Coimbra. Afonso has studied with Álvaro Teixeira Lopes, Rita Dourado and Helena Paula Figueiredo, and has been awarded prizes in several national and international piano competitions. He has participated in masterclasses with the pianists Ecaterina Baranov, Fausto Neves, Guigla Katsarava, João Paulo Santos, Josep Colom, Miguel Borges Coelho, Olga Prats, Pedro Burmester, Rudolfo Rubino and Serghei Covalenco. Gustavo Afonso graduated from the University of Aveiro (UA) in 2018, with a bachelor’s degree in Music Performance. In 2020, he completed his master’s degree in Music Education at UA, having developed a partnership with a group of Portuguese composers, resulting in the publication of Álbum de Música Portuguesa para Jovens Pianistas, by AvA Musical Editions. He was awarded the Universidade de Aveiro/Caixa Geral de Depósitos Prize and three scholarships from the Direção-Geral do Ensino Superior/Direção de Serviços de Apoio ao Estudante. Gustavo has performed extensively in Portugal, including also as a soloist with the Orquestra Clássica do Conservatório de Música de Coimbra, conducted by Leandro Alves, and the Orquestra Clássica do Centro, conducted by António Sérgio Ferreira. Since 2015, he has been collaborating with the soprano Beatriz Maia on a regular basis, including performances at the Festivais de Outono (Aveiro, 2019), at the Ciclos de Lua Nova (Águeda, 2021), and at the first edition of the Festival de Canto de Castelo Branco (2021). It is also worth mentioning the duo’s participation in the CD dedicated to the Portuguese composer Berta Alves de Sousa, with the recording of four songs on poems by Luís de Camões, within the scope of the project Euterpe unveiled: Women in Portuguese musical creation and interpretation during the 20th and 21st centuries, coordinated by Helena Marinho. Gustavo Afonso is currently attending the Doctoral Programme in Music Performance at UA, with a fellowship granted by the Instituto de Etnomusicologia – Centro de Estudos em Música e Dança.

Doctoral program

Antigone and Medea: A postdramatic approach to Victor Macedo Pinto’s theatre works

Helena Marinho and Markus Schirmer

Composer, pianist, pedagogue and music critic, Victor Macedo Pinto (1917-1964) was an important personality in the Portuguese musical scene of the 20th century, having left a wide and eclectic legacy in which the piano plays a central role. Example of this eclecticism is his music composed for the staging of Euripides’ Medea (ca. 1955) and Sophocles’ Antigone (1959), premiered by the Teatro dos Estudantes da Universidade de Coimbra (TEUC).
The plot and characters of Antigone and Medea intersect a variety of fields, from theatre to philosophy, as well as politics, literature, opera, cinema, painting and sculpture (Steiner [1984] 1995; Othman, Ahmad, and Manan 2011). The position of women in a patriarchal society is a central subject in both plays (Rabinowitz 1993; Griffiths 2006; Mitchell-Boyask 2008; Biajoli and Zaqueo 2018), although the texts are still widely debated (Pereira 2017).
Based on the collaborative model followed by Marinho et al. (2020) in the re-enactment of Constança Capdeville’s musical theatre works, and combining an archaeological approach – in Assis’ (2018) sense of Foucault’s concept –, a series of interviews and an artistic research outlook, this project proposes the recreation of the two Greek tragedies, including elements related to the performances by TEUC in the 1950s and 1960s, and discussing controversial topics in our society, such as gender issues. This investigation also aims to discover and promote Macedo Pinto’s music, contributing to emphasize his significant role as a Portuguese composer of the 20th century.