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© Joseph Banderet

Catarina and the Beauty of Killing Fascists

Tiago Rodrigues

Is killing a fascist a crime or a legitimate act of resistance? Worldviews collide in renowned Portuguese director Tiago Rodrigues’ bracing political theatre.


It’s a family tradition: once a year, they all get together and kill a fascist. Gathered once again for the big day in the idyllic Portuguese countryside, the clan is eager to initiate one of its youngsters into this important ritual. For no less than 70 years, this is how they have honoured the memory of Catarina Eufémia, a farm worker brutally slain under Salazar’s dictatorship. But this year’s chosen Catarina, gnawed by doubt, is reluctant to shoot the fascist kidnapped for the occasion. What if killing is not a brave act of resistance, as proclaimed by revolutionary lore, but simply a crime?

Following the brilliant By Heart (2015) and the sublime Antony and Cleopatra (2017), Tiago Rodrigues and his eight exceptional actors offer FTA audiences a gripping experience—a political theatre where ideologies and worldviews collide.


Produced by Teatro Nacional D. Maria II
Executive Producer Festival d’Avignon
Written and directed by Tiago Rodrigues
Performed by Isabel Abreu + Romeu Costa + António Fonseca + Beatriz Maia + Marco Mendonça + António Parra + Carolina Passos Sousa + João Vicente
Artistic Collaborator Magda Bizarro
Set Design F. Ribeiro
Lighting Design Nuno Meira
Costume Design José António Tenente
Sound Design and Original Score Pedro Costa
Choir Director and vocal arrangements João Henriques
Voice-over Cláudio de Castro + Nadezhda Bocharova + Paula Mora + Pedro Moldão
Choreography Advisors Sofia Dias + Vítor Roriz
Technical Advisor on weapons David Chan Cordeiro
Translated by Thomas Resendes (French) + Daniel Hahn (English) + Vincenzo Arsilio (Italian) + Igor Metzeltin (German)
Surtitles Patrícia Pimentel

Co-produced by Wiener Festwochen (Vienna) + Emilia Romagna Teatro Fondazione (Modena) + Théâtre de la Cité – CDN Toulouse Occitanie & Théâtre Garonne Scène européenne Toulouse + Festival d’Automne à Paris & Théâtre des Bouffes du Nord + Teatro di Roma – Teatro Nazionale + Comédie de Caen + Théâtre de Liège + Maison de la Culture d’Amiens + BIT Teatergarasjen (Bergen) + Le Trident – Scène nationale de Cherbourg-en-Cotentin + Teatre Lliure (Barcelone) + Centro Cultural Vila Flor (Guimarães) + O Espaço do Tempo (Montemor-o-Novo)

With the support of Almeida Garrett Wines + Cano Amarelo + Culturgest

Support for surtitling Cole Foundation

Special thanks to Mariana Gomes + Rui Pina Coelho + Margarida Bak Gordon + Rita Mendes et l’équipe du / and the team of Teatro Nacional D. Maria II + Sara Barros Leitão & Pedro Gil who, even if they’re no longer on stage with us, will always be Catarina

The show includes songs by Hania Rani (Biesy; Now, Run) + Joanna Brouk (The Nymph Rising, Calling the Sailor) + Laurel Halo (Rome Theme III; Hyphae) + Rosalía (De Plata)

Premiered at Centro Cultural Vila Flor, Guimarães, on September 20, 2020

Presented by La Presse with the support of Institut Français + Consulat général de France à Québec in association with Place des Arts

Texts and interview with Tiago Rodrigues Sara Fauteux
Translation David Dalgleish

Pictured Antonio Afonso Parra + Antonio Fonseca + Beatriz Maia + Carolina Passos Sousa + Isabel Abreu + Marco Mendonça + Romeu Costa + Rui M. Silva


© Christophe Raynaud de Lage

Tiago Rodrigues (Lisbon + Avignon)

After his tenure as artistic director of the Teatro Nacional D. Maria II in Lisbon from 2015 to 2021, Rodrigues took over the reins of the Festival d’Avignon in September 2022, becoming the first foreign artist to helm the prestigious French institution.

Full biography