This exhibition is the result of a selection of images, obtained from the memory preserved in photographs and other historical documents, which are part of the collection of the Conservatory of Music of Porto, other institutions and private collections. Its aim is to remember and honor the successive generations of teachers / pianists, emphasizing their importance and contribution in the construction of the history of the Oporto Music Conservatory from the foundation to the present time.
At the Dawn of the 20th century
The second half of the 19th century corresponds to a golden age in the city of Porto. The rise of the middle class allied to the prosperity of trade and industry led to major development, endowing the city with a few unique structures. One of these was the Crystal Palace, inaugurated in 1865 with the Portuguese International Exhibition. Amidst the various technological innovations then on show, there were a significant number of Portuguese and foreign makers of musical instruments. As a hard-working trading city Porto should also be characterised by its cultural activity, which flourished simultaneously in the fields of arts and letters. At the end of the 19th century events came to a head with the foundation of the Sociedade de Quartetos (Society of Quartets) (1890) and Orpheon Portuense (1891) by Bernardo Moreira de Sá, the Sociedade dos Concertos Sinfónicos (Society of Symphonic Concerts) (1910) by Raymundo de Macedo, the proliferation of musical instrument shops, the publication and sale of sheet music and a substantial number of musicians who, until the creation of Porto Music Conservatory, taught music privately, the favourite instrument being the piano. Present at society meetings at the time, as recounted by Helena Sá e Costa “playing the piano was a custom, part of one’s education when many talents were revealed”. Private piano classes continued the tradition of weekly individual lessons, culminating in public presentations of students and teachers throughout the city, mostly in salons associated with the musical instrument shops (Salão Bechstein, Sala Moreira de Sá, Casa Mello Abreu, Salão Beethoven, Salão Orfeo), but also at the Salão Nobre do Centro Commercial (Commercial Centre Great Hall), Clube Fenianos Portuense (Porto Fenians Club), Ateneu Comercial (Commercial Athenaeum), to name just a few. Raymundo de Macedo,Óscar da Silva, Luiz Costa, Ernesto Maia and José Cassagne are some of the most prominent pianists and teachers of the time. Having trained mainly in Lisbon and in Germany they were part of the generation that stimulated the opening of Porto Music Conservatory and were members of the first corps of teaching staff in 1917.
The first generation of piano teachers at Porto Music Conservatory
At the end of the 19th century Leipzig and Berlin were the cities of choice for the majority of Portuguese musicians looking to perfect their training. For a long time these were two of the most important musical centres in Europe, particularly given the quality of the teaching of its conservatories: in Leipzig the Music Conservatory founded by Félix Mendelssohn in 1843 and in Berlin the Scharwenka Conservatory founded in 1893.
Joseph Cassagne (1881-1939) and Raymundo de Macedo (1889-1931) both graduated from the Conservatory of Music in Leipzig, the latter being a pupil of Adolf Ruthardt, Han Sitt and Arthur Nikisch. For his part, Luiz Costa completed his training in Berlin with Bernhard Stavenhagen, Conrad Ansorge and Ferrucio Busoni, representatives of the "New German Piano School" founded by Franz Liszt. Except for this list Ernesto Maia who in 1883 goes to Paris to study with Marie Jaell and Pedro Blanco (1883 - 1919), a native of Leon, completed his training at the Royal Conservatory of Madrid, where he studied with Andrés Monge, and finally, Joaquim Gonçalves de Freitas (1871 - 1943) which is included as one of the most gifted students of Óscar da Silva.
The pianist Raymundo de Macedo was one of the great promoters of the foundation of the Conservatory of Music of Porto. In 1916 he elaborates a project to found a conservatory, which he presents to the Porto City Hall.However, it was not until 1917, at the initiative of Eduardo Santos Silva, Mayor, that the Conservatory of Music of Porto was established in a City Hall session on June 1. Raymundo de Macedo was invited to join the first faculty as a piano teacher.
Luiz Costa, one of the most preeminent Portuguese pianists and composers of his time, taught piano from 1917 at Porto Music Conservatory and held the position of director between 1933 and 1934. He left an indelible mark on the training of a generation of Portuguese pianists such as Berta Alves de Souza, Hélia Soveral and Helena Sá e Costa.
The closing concert of the first school year of the Conservatory of Music of Porto, took place on July 30, 1918 at the Gil Vicente Theater. This space, which belonged to the Crystal Palace was, over the years of its existence, the stage of numerous public presentations of students and professors of the Conservatory of Music of Porto
The auditions of students of the Conservatory of Music of Porto, at that time denominated Exercises of Students, had great impact in the city, usually deserving references in the press, tradition that has remained until the present day. This 1918 newspaper clipping, prominence is given to " Miss Bertha de Souza" Luiz Costa student that from the 40's she joined the faculty of the Conservatory as a piano teacher and chamber music.
Three years later the foundation, the integration of the pianist Hernâni Torres (1881 - 1939) into the teaching staff of the Conservatory confirmed the marked German influence. In 1908 he completed the piano course at the Leipzig Conservatory in the Teichmuller class. Years later he was officially invited and appointed professor of the Leipzig Conservatory and Thomaschule in the same city.
In 1921 he returned to Portugal to the Conservatory of Music of Porto, as piano teacher, and in 1924 he assumed the position of director, an activity that he held until 1933.
From the 40's the Conservatory of Music of Porto gained a new dynamism. In addition to the merited importance given to Maria Adelaide Freitas Gonçalves as a teacher, pianist and director of the Conservatory, it should be underlined that at this time important pianists, both nationally and internationally, were part of the teaching staff. These include Berta Alves de Souza, Hélia Soveral and Helena Sá e Costa. Many initiatives have been carried out involving invited teachers and pianists: the execution of integral works, the creation of thematic auditions especially addressed to the students ("Intimate Evenings" and "One Hour of Music") with comments on the program. It should be noted that Mª Adelaide Freitas Gonçalves founded the Cultural Circle in Oporto in 1937, which allowed her to promote in the Conservatory, recitals and other activities with international and national artists, who were part of the program of this concert society.All this dynamism continued in the following years, with the integration of the pianists from the 60s with a well-established career such as Manuela Araújo, Fernanda Wandschneirder or Fernando Jorge de Azevedo, and in the 1970s Maria Teresa Xavier, Isabel Rocha, Teresa Paiva, Arminda Odete Barosa, Isabel van Zeller among others.
One of Maria Adelaide Gonçalves’ greatest achievements was the foundation of Orquestra Sinfónica do Conservatório de Música do Porto in 1948.
In this concert, from the first season of 1948/49, the pianist Manuela Araújo, who later joined the faculty of the Conservatory of Music of Porto, presented herself as a soloist under the regency of Frederico de Feitas.
The presentation of the complete work of "The Well Tempered Cravo" by JS Bach by the pianist Helena Sá e Costa, commented by the composer Claudio Carneyro, in 1946 at the Conservatory of Music of Porto Hall, was part of an a unique initiative carried out by Maria Adelaide Freitas Gonçalves, called "Series of Concerts".
In 1937 Maria Adelaide Freitas Gonçalves founded in Porto the Delegação do Círculo de Cultura Musical (Office of the Music Culture Circle) at the invitation of Elisa de Sousa Pedroso. This allowed her to organize recitals and other activities at the Conservatory with renowned artists who were included in the Music Culture Circle programmes.
Note the performance of Chopin’s entire opus by the Spanish pianist Leopold Querol at seven concerts at the Conservatory Hall.
Hélia Soveral studied under Luiz Costa at Porto Music Conservatory. She later joined the Conservatory staff between 1947 and 1984.
At the Conservatory of Music of Porto, Hélia Soveral held several students hearings of Portuguese composers works premiere such as Cláudio Carneyro, Berta Alves de Souza, and Filipe Pires, in which she also participated. In this program, we highlight the first auditions of the Bagatelas (piano) by the composer Filipe Pires, Exotic Dance and Tocata Modal for two pianos by Berta Alves de Souza dedicated to the pianist.
In this program, note the first performances of the Bagatelas (piano) by the composer Filipe Pires, and Exotic Dance and Toccata Modal for two pianos by Berta Alves de Souza, dedicated to the pianist.
There is the participation of pianist Madalena Soveral, her daughter, who later joined the teaching staff and also Maria Teresa Rego whose pedagogical activity at the Conservatory lasted from 1972 to 1991.
Berta Alves de Souza had a lifelong relationship with the Conservatory of Music of Oporto. Luiz Costa piano student since the foundation, in parallel studied composition with Lucien Lambert and Claudio Carneiro. At the Conservatory of Music in Porto, she became a chamber music teacher in 1946 and a piano teacher in 1949, a position she held until 1977, contributing to the formation of a pleiade of pianists, who integrated the future generations of piano teachers of the Conservatory of Music of Porto.
Parallel to her activity as a pianist and teacher at the Conservatory, Berta Alves Souza dedicated herself to the composition. Several works were dedicated to the pianist Hélia Soveral who in turn played an important role in its dissemination. In the notes written on the concert reaffirmed in his honor Berta Alves de Souza writes the following: "This audition is dedicated to the pianists (...) with five pieces for piano solo, Three Preludes Grave, Fluente and Apassionato, this third dedicated to the illustrious interpreter that is my colleague D. Hélia Soveral Torres, to whom I owe great Stimulus for my piano compositions and brilliant public performances"
The musical sessions "Intimate Evenings” were instituted by Mª Adelaide Freitas Gonçalves in the academic year 1946/47. Were the first commented thematic hearings held regularly at the Conservatory, a tradition that still remains today.
In this program, the class of the teacher Helena Sá e Costa organizes a musical session dedicated to French music, in which the teacher herself participates interpreting two works of Debussy ("Doctor Gradus ad Parnassum and Golliwog's Cakewalke)
The pianist Fernanda Wanddschneider developed a long career as a teacher at the Conservatory of Music in Porto from 1965 to 1994, becoming the position of President of the Director Council in the last 5 years. Disciple of Ernestina Silva Monteiro and Berta Alves de Souza, gave numerous recitals in Portugal, Spain, France, Austria and Germany.
She was the founder of the International Music Competition of the City of Porto, and throughout her 26 editions was an obligatory point of passage in the European circuit of piano competitions.
A disciple of Vianna da Mota at the National Conservatory (and particularly until her death), studied with Marie Levêque de Freitas Branco and later, with Géza Anda, at the Conservatory of Lucerne.
In this photograph, Manuela Araújo greets the conductor Pedro de Freitas Branco after a concert organized by the Portuguese Musical Youth at the Cinema Trindade in Porto, where he performed the 3rd Concerto for Piano by L. Beethoven accompanied by the Symphony Orchestra of the Oporto Conservatory of Music in 1960
This photograph represents the image of the cover of the Century Illustrated and marks the moment when Manuela Araújo won the "Vainna da Mota Prize" promoted by the National Broadcaster in 1945.
She regularly performed solo, chamber music, and Orchestra under the direction of Pedro de Freitas Branco, Frederico de Freitas, Silva Pereira, Álvaro Cassuto, Günther Arglebe, José Atalaya and Piero Bellugi.
It is noteworthy, in 1968, the recording of Piano Concerto in G of M. Ravel with the National Symphony Orchestra, under the direction of conductor Piero Bellugi.
The Symphony Orchestra Conservatory of Music of Porto played an important role in disseminating music as well as provided an opportunity to many conservatory teachers to perform several times as soloists. In this series of concerts offered by the Câmara do Porto, the pianists and teachers Hélia Soveral, Manuela Araújo and Fernando Jorge de Azevedo presented the 1st, 2nd and 3rd concerts for piano of Beethoven. The complete work would be complete with the interpretation of Fernanda Wandschneider, of the remaining 2 in the last concert of this series.
Maria Teresa Xavier, a pupil of Helena Costa, from whose class she graduated with distinction, taught at Conservatory of Musica of Porto from 1968 -1989.
She played at concerts for the Secretariat of State for Culture, Pró-Arte, Rádio Clube Português (Portuguese Radio Club), Radiodifusão e Radiotelevisão Portuguesas (Portuguese Radio and Television Broadcasting), and in many foreign countries. She also played chamber music and in that capacity performed with several national and foreign artists.
In this photo João de Freitas Branco hands over the prize of the 4th contest of the "Juventude Musical Portuguesa" to Maria Teresa Xavier in 1957
Teresa Xavier, current coordinator of the Keyboard Curricular Department, at 3-year-old playing the piano at the Conservatory of Music of Porto, brought by her Mother (Mª Teresa Xavier) and in this context says the following:
"I must have been about three or four and I remember that I liked to sit on the floor, right underneath the piano whilst my Mother practised. It was a way of staying close to her, as if I were in a sort of musical womb, immersed in the resonances of the appassionata, Mendelssohn’s Piano Concerto Nº 1 or Falla’s Ritual Fire Dance… (...)"
I remember the many students my mother taught, (...) Or even the innumerable solo recitals or chamber music recitals in which she played. Or the concerts with the symphony orchestra (...) Even the prizes she won…
But I would rather remember her like this – with her generous, exuberant smile – always ready to support her students and her piano, violin, cello, singing colleagues… each one knew he or she could rely on her and on the immense passion she showed in her devotion to music.
In memory of the pianist and teacher Maria Teresa Xavier, my Mother.
In memory of all the piano teachers at Porto Music Conservatory.” April, 2017 Teresa Xavier
At the age of 8, Teresa Paiva performed for the first time in a recital at the Conservatory of Oporto in 1953. She was a disciple of her mother, Gilberta Paiva, Maria Adelaide Freitas Gonçalves and Jorge Croner de Vasconcelos, and she completed the Superior Piano Course at the National Conservatory With 19 values.In 1967 she pursued studies at the Cologne School of Music.
In 1971, she was named teacher of the general and superior piano courses at the Oporto Conservatory of Music, a position she held until 2001.
On this day, Maria Adelaide Freitas Gonçalves gave her the following words:
To Maria Teresa for the appreciation in which I have her unusual qualities as a pianist offers on the day of her first Recital - with the hope that she will continue in a very glorious career Maria Adelaide Diogo de Freitas Gonçalves
Isabel Rocha had a long connection with Porto Music Conservatory. She studied under her mother Marília Rocha and also Maria Adelaide de Freitas Gonçalves and Helena Sá e Costa. She graduated from Porto Music Conservatory which she then joined as a piano teacher from 1971 to 2010.
She also was a member of the board from 1998 until she retired (2010).
“In 1969 I entered Porto Music Conservatory as a student of the senior course. I plunged unequivocally into music, acquiring knowledge, connections and valuable opportunities which today – 50 years after my first piano recital – I find were deeply important to my condition as teacher and musician."
Times of Change
On 13 March 1975, in the aftermath of the 25 April Revolution, and as a revolutionary act, a group of teachers from Porto Music Conservatory decided to occupy Pinto Leite House, at the time owned by Porto Municipality, their aim being to ensure better conditions for Porto Music Conservatory. “We played concerts nonstop, took turns to ensure that employees, teachers and students were always in the building to guarantee possession” (Isabel Rocha). Teresa Xavier recalls “the vibrant times when Pinto Leite House was occupied. (…) This change culminated in a memorable concert by candlelight for the electricity was turned off…” The move to the new premises did not cut short the dynamic enthusiasm of the previous decades. Former students like Jaime Mota, Maria José Souza Guedes, Fausto Neves, Teresa Xavier, Fátima Travanca, Manuela Costa, Eduardo Resende, Isabel Couto Soares among others, returned to the Conservatory as teachers. The group of piano teachers was also complemented by pianists of foreign nationality as Anne Marie Menet (Switzerland), Vitali Dotsenko (Russia) or Constantin Sandu (Romania). It highlights the continuing concert series, among which are the Thursday Cultural Series, the celebration of the "Year Mussorgsky" in 1989 as well as the partnerships with various cultural institutions of the city, aiming to launch the best students and give the teachers an opportunity to perform in public whilst enriching the city’s cultural program.
Maria José Souza Guedes has been a piano teacher at Porto Music Conservatory since 1982. Has performed at many concerts in Portugal and abroad, playing solo, with orchestra and chamber music at important concert halls. She has premiered several piano works of composer Fernando Lapa.
In this recording she interprets the “Variações sobre o Coro da Primavera“, an emblematic work of José Afonso, recreated by the composer Fernando Lapa in 2000 which is dedicated to her.
Program for the celebration of the "Mussorgsky Year", organized by the pianist and teacher Manuela Araújo, National Conservatory and Student Association of the Conservatory of Music of Porto. Several activities were contemplated, including the inauguration of an exhibition of photographs by Mussorsky from the Portugal - USSR Association, recreation of the exhibition of the works of Vitor Hartman that at the time gave rise to the composition of the work "Quadros de Uma Exposição" by the painters José Rodrigues, Armando Alves, Zulmiro de Carvalho, Angelo de Sousa, Fernando Marques de Oliveira, Ana Marchand, Gerardo Burmester, Albuquerque Mendes and Ruth Rosengarten, the presentation of the work by the pianist Maria José Souza guedes and a Concert Non Stop of teachers and students of the Conservatório de Música do Porto.
Whilst I evoke my teaching activity at the Conservatory (1984 - 1989) with great fondness, this feeling is intensified in the year of the Centenary! In addition to the teachers of my generation – to whom I am still linked by deep ties of friendship (...) Unforgettable students of mine include: Amélia Paula Pinto, Antónia Castro, António Pinho Vargas, Céu Camposinhos, Eduardo Resende, Francisco Albuquerque, Francisco Fiúza, Inês Soares, Manuela Costa, Sofia Lourenço, to name just a few. Fausto Neves
It is already a tradition among piano teachers to explore various repertoire formations for one and two pianos with 4, 6 or 8 hands, in concert at the Conservatory. This practice gave rise to the current annual concert "Mãos Unidas". In this photograph, from left to right the pianists Constantin Sandu, Manuela Araújo, Arminda Odete Barosa and Eduardo Resende interpreted the Sonata for 2 pianos with 8 hands of Smetana.
Since 1991 Eduardo Resende has taught piano at Porto Music Conservatory and was Coordinator of the Keyboard Curricular Department. He has been a major promoter of various piano-related activities at the Conservatory, such as the creation of the Piano Competition in 1994, the annual concert of piano teachers "Mãos Unidas" among others.
Manuela Costa has established herself as a dedicated pedagogue, and was engaged as Piano teacher at the Oporto Music Conservatory in 1991.
Her particular enthusiasm and endeavour in coaching young players all along their musical studies led her to write a two volume essay, on a right approach of the basic fundaments of piano playing, (AVA Editions), and to develop a game as an educational platform with the aid of ActivInspire program, dedicated to all beginner students.
Pianist Constantin Sandu has lived in Portugal since 1991 and joined the teaching staff of the Conservatory of Music of Porto from 1992 to 2000. He studied with Sonia Ratescu, Constantin Nitu, later with the renowned pianist and professor Constantin Ionescu-Vovu at the Conservatorio Superior de Music "C. Porumbescu". He is currently a piano teacher at Escola Superior de Música e Artes do Espetáculo do Porto, where he is currently Director of the Piano Department.
Jorge Montenegro as a Professor of Piano and Piano as a Second Instrument at Conservatory of Music of Porto, presented the Ray Gottlieb method “ Attention & Memory Training, Stresspoint Learning on The Trampoline”.
He gave many concerts in Portugal, France and in the United States and as a soloist with Portuguese orchestras.
In the context of the celebrations of the Centennial of the CMP, and also to mark Rosgard Lingardsson's almost 20 years of teaching, the "Tempo" concert brought together alumni, now with their own pianistic careers and current students (from the smallest to the finalists ).
The title of this concert - "A Tempo" - came from the musical language itself. In time, that is, at the right time. Rosgard Lingardsson tells us that "just as in music, there are, in life, allegro, ritardandos, appassionatos and sforzandos, and then there are those perfect moments in which everything seems to be in the right time.
More than an evocation of the past, today we celebrate the present and dream of the future. We have among us, today, people who came from the past, people who rejoice the present and people who promise the future. Three different times, but in time, because they all came together at the right time. "
From the year 2008 new challenges were placed. The Conservatory of Music of Porto changed again from installations to the West area of Rodrigues de Freitas Secondary School, an emblematic building of the Porto architecture designed by the architect Marques da Silva in 1919. Not only the progressive increase of teachers and piano students, as well as the introduction of the integrated teaching system, which combines general studies with musical learning, has led to the consolidation of a series of activities promoted by the Keyboard Department: an annual master class with invited pianists, concerts commented by students and teachers, workshops, annual concert of piano teachers "Mãos Unidas" and Internal Competition.
Silvia Lopes, Ana Cancela, Dina Resende, Luisa Ferreira, Sílvia Lopes, Sónia Amaral and Ligia Madeira, are the piano teachers who have most recently joined the faculty of the Conservatory.
Continuing with an old tradition, Maria José Souza Guedes (pianist) and Fernando Lapa (composer) have organized an annual interdisciplinary concert since 2010 at the Conservatory of Music of Porto. With comments by Fernando Lapa and the interpretation of Maria José Souza Guedes, each of these concerts went through consecrated composers and musical works in the History of Music: R. Schumann, L. Beethoven, Moussorgsky, César Franck, and Schubert.
The Internal Competition of the Oporto Conservatory of Music has been gaining notoriety in such a way that since 2011, it has established a partnership with the Orquestra do Norte, in which, in the Concert of Laureates of the winners of the 1st Level A Prize of its Competition Intern, the Distinguishing Prize - Orquestra do Norte, which consists of a solo concert with this Orchestra.
In this photo: Marta Patrocínio, 1st Prize Level A (2012)
With Jorge Colaço's tile panel as background, some of the youngest pianists at the Oporto Conservatory of Music performed in the entrance hall of the S. Bento Station in Oporto, one of the places where the first 24-hour Piano marathon - Piano Porto 2015, took place. In this photograph, Lara Redentor, a student of the Conservatory in the class of Prof. Joana Neto, played Burgmüller and Frederico de Freitas.
Curatorship: Ana Cancela
Scientific Commission: Ana Cancela, Dina Resende
Support: Conservatório de Música do Porto | Departamento de Teclas | Grupo Disciplinar de Piano, Museu Nacional da Música, Direção-Geral do Património Cultural / DGPC, Fundação Juan Marz, Arquivo Moreira de Sá e Costa
Conservatório de Música do Porto, Prof.ª Bibliotecária Paula Andrade Biblioteca Escolar | Conservatório de Música do Porto, Arquivo Moreira de Sá e Costa (Prof. Dr. Henrique Gomes de Araújo, Prof.ª Dr.ª Helena Gomes de Araújo) , Fundação Juan Marz, Museu Nacional da Música, Direção-Geral do Património Cultural / DGPC (Dra. Tânia Olim), Eng. Helder Macedo Sampaio, Dr. Luis Cabral, Profª Isabel Rocha, Prof.ª Isabel van Zeller, Prof. Dr. Rui Pedro Pereira, Prof.ª Drª Madalena Soveral, Prof. Dr. Fausto Neves, Prof.ª Fernanda Wandchneider, Prof. Constantin Sandu, Prof. Jaime Mota, Profª Fernanda Wandschneider, Prof.ª Teresa Paiva, Prof.ª Luisa Tender, Prof.ª Cristina Henriques, Dra. Ofélia Diogo Costa, Dr. Carlos Araújo Alves, Professores de Piano do CMP (Prof.ª Teresa Xavier, Prof.ª Maria José Souza Guedes, Prof. António Oliveira, Prof. Eduardo Resende, Prof.ª Ligia Madeira, Prof. Sílvia Lopes, Prof. Jorge Montenegro, Prof.ª Sónia Amaral, Prof.ª Emília Gonçalves, Prof.ª Manuela Costa, Prof.ª Rosgard Lingardson)
Video Editing: Igor Sterpin
Graphic Design: Arq. Julieta Cunha (Timeline - CMP Piano Teachers)
Fotografia: Maria José Passos ("Teresa Xavier and Students", "The Pianist Manuela Costa", "The Pianist Jorge Montenegro" "Bechstein Piano"
Translation: Carlos Freitas, Alexandra Leitão, Ana Cancela
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