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O Bailado do Deus Morto

Flávio de Carvalho

1933

In 1933, Flávio de Carvalho founded the Teatro da Experiência [ Theater of Experience], which took place at the Clube dos Artistas Modernos (CAM) [Club of Modern Artists] in São Paulo. The main idea behind the initiative was to experiment with the psychology of entertainment. De Carvalho’s play O Bailado do Deus Morto presented the story of the killing of a “hairy God,” betrayed by an “inferior woman.” The work was performed by a predominantly Black cast of non-actors dressed in white nightgowns and wearing aluminum masks. The heretical content of the piece plus the, at the time, unorthodox presence of Black bodies on stage was considered so scandalous that it led to the space being shut down by the police.

A scene of O Bailado do Deus Morto, November 1933
B/w photograph, exhibition print
Source: Fundo Flávio de Carvalho/CEDAE-UNICAMP, Campinas
Photo: Mathias Völzke

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