Learn more about Fado, World’s Intangible Cultural Heritage (UNESCO).

"This intangible cultural heritage, transmitted from generation to generation, is constantly recreated by communities and groups in response to their environment, their interaction with nature and their history, and provides them with a sense of identity and continuity, thus promoting respect for cultural diversity".

Fado appeared during the early 19th century in Lisbon, and is believed to have its origins in the port districts such as Alfama, Mouraria and Bairro Alto.

There are numerous theories about the origin of fado. Some trace its origins or influences to the Medieval “cantigas de amigo” (song of a friend), some ancient Moorish influence and the chants of Africans sailing at sea, but none is conclusive. It possibly evolved and formed, from a mixture of several older musical genres.

Fado performers in the middle of the 19th century were mainly from the urban working-class, namely sailors, bohemians and courtesans, who not only sang, but also danced and beat the fado. During the second half of the 19th century, the dance rhythms would eventually fade away, and the performers became merely singers (fadistas).

The 19th century’s most renowned fadista was Maria Severa. More recently Amália Rodrigues, known as the “Rainha do Fado” (“Queen of Fado”) was most influential in popularizing fado worldwide.

Fado performances today may be accompanied by a string quartet or a full orchestra.

Fado Show in Porto

Concert duration: 1 hour | Price: €19
Includes a glass of Port Wine

Praça Guilherme Gomes Fernandes, 28 – Porto
100 meters from Lello Bookstore