The Theatre Group of the Technical University of Lisbon (TUT) was founded in October 1981 by its present Director, Prof. Jorge Listopad, at the invitation of the then Rector of the University, Prof. Eduardo Arantes e Oliveira.
It is important in a technical university, even more than in other types of university, to have a theatre group, to provide an extra dimension to the students’ education by giving them an activity that stimulates the imagination, reflection and expression, as a complement to their training in science and technology.
Since its foundation, TUT has played an important part in the cultural life of the university, giving training in all the aspects of the theatrical art: body language, gesture, breathing, voice control, and music. Away from the lecture halls and classrooms, TUT gives its trainees the instruments to see the world around them in a different way – through make-believe, language and emotions, as well as an awareness of the complex human relations that make up our society.
The outcome of this collective endeavour has been the regular public staging of different kinds of performance, depending on the abilities and wishes of the people in the group. In its twenty-seven years of existence, always under the direction of Jorge Listopad, TUT has presented collective creations based on poems and other non-theatrical texts as well as classic plays. The range of authors presented includes Constantin Kavafy, Jorge Luis Borges, Claudel, Alberto Pimenta, Francisco Tenreiro, Büchner, Goldoni, Ibne Azme, Chaucer, Calderón de la Barca, Ghelderode, Camões, Almeida Garret, Jorge de Sena, Gabriel Garcia Marques, Kafka, Lioubomir Simovitch, Cesário Verde, Alexander O’Neill, Ruy Belo, Grabato Dias, Álvaro de Campos, Vasco Graça Moura, Brecht, António José da Silva, Gil Vicente, Anrique da Mota, Robert Walser, Saint-Exupéry, George Steiner, Teolinda Gersão, Edel Atemkristall, Ramiro Osório, Euripides, Almada Negreiros, António Patrício, Dino Buzzatti and Jorge Listopad. The group has received universal praise from audiences and critics alike, and – even though not a professional group – has been awarded three prizes by the Portuguese Theatre Critics Association.