Letter signed by Bidu Sayão (1932)
Letter signed by Bidu Sayão (1932)
"I ask Scala management to confirm the program and the day of rehearsals to arrive in Milan on time."
Letter signed by Bidu Sayão to Jenner Mataloni - Superintendent of La Scala Theater from 1932 to 1943 - who left a handwritten comment at the bottom. One page. In Italian. 21.6 cm x 28.9 cm. October 17, 1932, in Rome. Perfect state. Single piece.
Portuguese translation, typewritten part
Rome, October 17, 1932
Portuguese translation, handwritten part
Monday the 17th With regard to the last communication from the Federal Secretary, I confirm that full responsibility for organizing the concert has been entrusted to the administration of La Scala, which has drawn up a previously approved program and whose execution is entrusted exclusively to artists, choir and orchestra of the current Scala season. Thanks
Jenner Malatoni (Superintendent of La Scala Theater from 1932 to 1943)
That Brazil has gifted the world with formidable athletes and renowned painters is nothing new. However, not only in the visual arts or sports did the natives of this Tupiniquim land gain international recognition, Brazilian music also conquered the United States and Europe with its voices and rhythm. One of the singers who built this legacy is Bidu Sayão (1902 - 1999), a famous lyrical performer who shone in the most famous theaters in the world during the 20th century.
Born in Itaguaí, a municipality in the metropolitan region of Rio de Janeiro, in 1902, Balduína de Oliveira Sayão, our beloved Bidu, began studying singing at a young age, with a Romanian teacher who was then living in Brazil. Seeing the talent of the young woman from Rio de Janeiro, the teacher took her to Romania, where Bidu continued her studies. The change of continent paved the way for the singer, who already in the last years of the 20's began to perform in theaters in France and Italy.
In 1932, Bidu won the great honor of being invited to sing at the Teatro alla Scala, in Milan, as we can see in the letter she wrote to the director of that legendary space. Inaugurated in 1778, Teatro alla Scala is one of the most famous opera houses in the world. Surely, the fact of being invited to perform there must have been an immense joy for the singer, but how did the girl from the interior of Rio de Janeiro feel when she received such an invitation? Thrilled? Ecstatic?
Whatever his sentiments, the words in his letter were restrained and professional, Bidu treated the honor casually, simply inquiring about the program and rehearsal dates. She didn't want to arrive late in Milan.
Another interesting aspect of the letter is that the performance in which Bidu was to participate was a fascist benefit concert. Although this is an almost absurd idea for us, inhabitants of the 21st century, it is important to remember that, at the beginning of the 1930s, both fascism and Nazism were still not understood as totalitarian and bellicose regimes, but as nationalist movements that defended the people, and that was precisely the mask that made its growth possible. What did Bidu think about the subject? Not all of these questions have such clear answers, but knowing the world written by Bidu Sayão's words, as in his letters, certainly brings us closer to this consecrated singer.
Although he made his fame mainly in the United States and Europe, Bidu still had a celebrated moment in Brazil before his departure at the age of 96. In 1995, she was honored at the parade of the Beija-flor samba school, at the Rio de Janeiro carnival. Bidu entered the samba catwalk sitting on a throne on the last float of the parade, thus establishing herself as the queen of opera and one of the greatest Brazilian interpreters. Bidu's great legacy is essential, especially in the country's current context, to encourage girls and women to pursue their dreams and overcome challenges.