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Friday Briefing: Happy 50th Birthday, Portuguese Democracy

Good morning and welcome to PORTUGAL DECODED. The Carnation Revolution turns 50 next Thursday. To celebrate, we take a ride through its most notable achievements. Hip, hip hooray!


Weeks after taking office, PM Luís Montenegro found himself on the hot seat after it emerged that the €1.5 billion tax cut at the heart of his electoral campaign amounts to only €200 million, as €1.3 billion in tax relief is already in force (More).
António Costa’s hopes of becoming the next President of the European Council got a major boost after the Lisbon Court of Appeal slapped down public prosecutors’ appeal in the Operation Influencer case that brought down his Government (More).


The Portuguese authorities have alerted users for rising fraudulent Whatsapp messages. The scam usually begins with unsolicited messages, promising payments in exchange for interaction with certain Tik Tok accounts (More).
More Portuguese intend to vote in the June European elections, but 71% of the respondents don't know the exact date of the poll, Eurobarometer revealed. The economy, job creation and the geopolitical context are the key concerns (More).


The Lisbon City Council will double its Municipal Tourist Tax from the current two euros to four euros. If demand remains at 2023 levels, the hike could bring in more than 80 million euros a year for the Lisbon municipality (More).
The Portuguese footwear industry became the second largest in Europe, with 85 million pairs of shoes produced last year. Despite declining by 18.6%, Italy’s shoe industry still leads the sector in Europe with 162 million pairs (More).


Author Salman Rushdie is set to take part in an event at Porto’s historic Livraria Lello in September. The event was initially scheduled for September 2022, but was cancelled following the attack on the writer (More).
Zebro Viewpoint, designed by Pritzker-award winning architect Álvaro Siza Vieira, will officially open on April 25. Standing 150m high on a rocky escarpment, the structure will delight vertigo thrill-seekers (More).




April Festivities

On the night of April 24, all roads will lead to Terreiro do Paço. The celebrations will begin at 10pm with a videomapping show, featuring photos by Alfredo Cunha and music by Rodrigo Leão. Next, the concert A Vision of the Future, will bring together six young actors on stage with the Lisbon Sinfonietta Orchestra, the Santo Amaro de Oeiras Choir, the Choir of the Artistic School of the Gregorian Institute of Lisbon and various soloists, totalling 180 musicians.

On April 25, a solemn ceremony will take place at the Assembly of the Republic. Afterwards, the Liberdade Avenue will fill up with the traditional popular parade (starting at 15h). An evocative military parade will also take place in Terreiro do Paço, in Lisbon, followed by other episodes of historical reconstitution. 

April 25, Always

The Aljube Museum - the former political prison - hosts an exhibition that invites us to reflect on what we have achieved. Are we enjoying and defending those rights? Have new ones emerged? Have others been lost? What remains to be achieved? A journey through the resistance from 25 April 1974 to the present day, so that we can dream together of a future in democracy. From April 24, 2024 until January 31, 2025.

Quartel do Carmo Guided Tours in English

The Quartel do Carmo was the place where the head of the dictatorial regime, Marcello Caetano, took refuge on April 25, 1974, and at the end of the day accepted the surrender, making the military coup victorious. The Commemorative Commission of the 50th Anniversary of April 25th organizes guided tours in English to Museu da Guarda Nacional Republicana (GNR) and Quartel Carmo between April 11 and May 10 (11am to 12pm). More information and booking here.

A carnation that plays

Fifty years ago, a carnation became the symbol of a revolution in a country that was beginning to blossom. Sowing democracy is like sowing a flower that we must take care of, to then harvest the seeds – or Freedom! – and thus, we can dance like a carnation to the sound of a carnation. The show “A Carnation that plays” will be on at Lu.Ca until April 24. Tickets 3 € for under 18 and 7 € for over 18.


Allied to Liberty

The Aliados Avenue and General Humberto Delgado Square will be the stage for the official ceremonies in Porto. They'll kick off on April 24, with a videomapping show by photographer Alfredo Cunha, musician Rodrigo Leão and artist Vhils. This is followed by the Aliados à Liberdade concert (10pm) with performances by Canto Nono, Vozes da Rádio and Coral de Letras from the University of Porto, which will end with the song Grândola, Vila Morena and fireworks.

On 25 April, after the Freedom Parade (2.30pm, from Largo Soares dos Reis), the concert Celebrating 50 years of Freedom Day (3pm) brings together various musicians (with musical direction by André Castro) in a selection of songs by José Afonso, Adriano Correia de Oliveira, José Mário Branco, Fernando Tordo, Paulo de Carvalho, among others. The Cara de Espelho project takes to the stage at 16.15.


Grandola Vila Morena

"Grândola, Vila Morena, land of fraternity, the people are in charge, inside you, O city". José Afonso's words and music made the Alentejo town famous and now Grândola is giving back by creating a museum centre entirely dedicated to this song - which opens to the public on April 20. On the night of April 24, the festivities in Grândola include concerts by Agir and Paulo de Carvalho, who will certainly perform "E depois do Adeus", the song that was the first password of 25 April - it was broadcast at 22.55 on April 24 on the radio in Lisbon and was a signal for the troops to get ready for action.

Lastly, but not least, let’s get in the celebratory mood…

* While you’re here: follow PORTUGAL DECODED on Instagram to receive daily updates on what’s happening in Portugal.


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