Lula honors Zé Celso: ‘He sought innovation and renewal’

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President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva (PT) honored theater director Zé Celso, founder of Teatro Oficina, where several artists began their careers. Died this Thursday (6), aged 86, as a result of complications from a fire that hit his apartment in the Paraíso neighborhood, south of São Paulo.

“Brazil says goodbye today to one of the biggest names in the history of Brazilian theater, one of its most creative artists. José Celso Martinez Correa, or Zé Celso, as he was always affectionately called, was an artist who sought innovation and theater renewal,” he wrote.

The representative also pointed out that the playwright always defended Brazilian democracy and that he faced the dictatorship with creativity.

“He leaves an immense legacy for the national culture. My condolences to his family, students and admirers. The trajectory of José Celso Martinez marked the history of the arts in Brazil and will not be forgotten.”

Eduardo Suplicy, state deputy in São Paulo and a longtime friend of the playwright, said he will continue to defend Teatro Oficina, which is going through a battle with Silvio Santos. “In honor of him, I will continue to fight for the creation of Parque do Rio Bixiga and the Theater. We’ve been friends our whole lives and we’ve been together in a play.”

Geraldo Alckmin, vice-president, classified the director as irreverent and provocative, and that he had a rich history, both personal and professional. “Zé Celso made Teatro Oficina a heritage of Brazilian culture and a storehouse of talent for our stages. May his legacy continue to inspire the next generations of men and women who dedicate themselves to the performing arts in our country.”

Fernando Haddad, Minister of Finance, says that the filmmaker’s death also means the death of the feeling of boldness and courage in Brazilian theater.

Senate President Rodrigo Pacheco (PSD) also mourned the death of one of the greatest exponents of Brazilian tropicalism. “A restless, creative, compulsive producer and thinker of the great national issues, Zé Celso gave meaning to Brazilian theatrical art. I leave here my deep feelings of regret and my condolences to his family, friends and his legion of admirers.”

“Zé Celso’s legacy is eternalized at Teatro Oficina, a true cultural treasure in São Paulo, leaving its mark on generations through its revolutionary plays”, wrote Alexandre Padilha, Minister of Institutional Relations.

Source: Folha

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