A conversation between The Man of Dreams and its "creator"-

the composer António Chagas Rosa

The Man of Dreams (1st Scene) (2022) - António Chagas Rosa - Subtitled


The Man of Dreams

A chamber opera by António Chagas Rosa


Available for National and International Tour
Film Opera on Distribution

Opera in 7 Scenes

Based on the homonymous novel by Mário de Sá-Carneiro 

"I master my dreams, I dream what I want. I live what I want."


António Chagas Rosa, Music and Libretto

Jan Wierzba, Musical Director

Miguel Loureiro, Stage Director

André Guedes, Set Designer

João Telmo, Costumes and Props

Light designer and video to be announced


Ensemble MPMP

Catarina Molder (soprano), Man of Dreams

Christian Luján (baritone), Narrator

Vasco Santos, Pedro Santos, actors


Length: 1h30min


Media Partner: RTP2

Production: Ópera do Castelo

Co-producers: Teatro São Luiz, Teatro Viriato

Patron: Caixa Cultura




The libretto to this opera was written by the composer himself, based on the homonymous novel O Homem dos Sonhos (The man of dreams) written in 1913 by Mário de Sá-Carneiro, in Paris, city where the Portuguese poet lived, during the last years of his short life and where he would commit suicide in 1916, with only 25 years of age.
As a literary text unfolds esthetical elements typical of Symbolism and Futurism, always with great dramatic intensity, announcing in its own way Modernism and having strongly influenced Fernando Pessoa. Dreams, day-dreams and madness represent relevant topics.




"The man of Dreams" tell us the story about a mysterious elegant Russian man, Mário de Sá-Carneiro met in a greasy Parisian café, in his poor student days.
This bizarre character spent one night long, describing his secret and explaining the reasons of his endless happyness: he travelled in dreams to places with new indescribable colors, to cities where one could breathe music, to countries where there were more than two sexes and where soul was visible and body not...Eventually he succeeded transcending his fastidious life boredom, through a continuous oneiric trance: "Well, I’ve managed to change my existence and I do it everyday! I have access not only to everything that exists, but also to what doesn’t exist."

At the end, the enigmatic man of dreams vanishes. Has he ever existed?

How much from him is real or imagination? Is he mad or sane? Is this character out of a dream?



This synthetic opera is built in 7 scenes, all alternated with instrumental interludes and was written for a soprano, with a powerful dramatical expression- the poet’s "alter-ego " incarnating the man of dreams himself, for baritone – the narrator (poet) and an instrumental ensemble of 10 musicians.

Its evasive visionary and timeless thematic resumes on one hand, the eternal human dissatisfaction and continuous obsession in transcending limits. Limits of time, space, color and genre. And on the other hand, the premonitory and structuring fascinating power of dream, which ultimately molds and guides human life in its existential march, as global society or as individual. Everything we are, was eventually dreamed and transformed in visible material – reality.


"Being The Man of Dreams a tale about the limitless projections of human desire and their anxieties, it offers itself, a series of difficulties or challenges to whom who tries to materialize it on scene. Its own condition of metamorphic object, a chameleonic being, who can be anything, already was or might become, resists to the necessity of the concreteness where theatre begins by being a stage where poetical finds its objectiveness. How to mix honey and sugar, pastry of diverse consistence? I’ve decided together with the interpreters, in this lyrical theatre to stage a certain Man in a modernist cafe's mirage, semi- suggested, half-way to another thing, who in a certain moment enters and starts confrontation with its owner, who already anticipated him in dreams and who unfolds in mirror, heteronomy, in doppelgänger, ultimately in varied astral or real projections. The Man of Dreams after Mário de Sá Carneiro, after Chagas Rosa, would be for me a fascinating being transporting in itself the allness and who in a hot afternoon might enter in any cafe of Chiado, preferentially one that no longer exists, and would stay seated, starring, with lost look, at his own reflexion in the café counter’s mirror, in front."

- Miguel Loureiro



Violin, Horn, Basse, Flute, Saxophone, Basson, Trombone, Accordeon, Piano, Percussion.


Premiere: 2-4 Feb 2022, Teatro Municipal de São Luiz, Lisbon