In 2017 he starts a new dance/music project for Schools (CNB National Ballet of Portugal / São Carlos Theatre) in collaboration with his coleague musician/composer Duncan Fox and dancers Catarina Lourenço, Mariana Paz, Maria João Pinto. Together they create “Kamiyo do Rio” based on a tradicional African story. Choreography by Mario Franco and music by Portuguese composers Francisco de Lacerda and Luis de Freitas Branco arranged by Duncan Fox for small ensemble. This was another great experience “Kamiyo do Rio” that we started rehearsing in April 2017 and was only presented twice in Salão Nobre at National Theatre of São Carlos.
In spite of the success of these two productions (Fada Oriana and Kamiyo do Rio), the commitment and enthusiasm of all those involved and the positive feedback from parents, teachers and children, the directors of CNB/OPART have not shown until now interest in keeping these projects active and allowing space for developing new ones.
Most public theatres around the world have realised the importance of educational projects in the creation of future audiences for opera, classical music and ballet, and their responsibility in offering a diversity of initiatives in this area, but sadly in Lisbon this does not seem to be the case.
Here is the photo of this incredible team:

One of the recent and most rewarding experiences I have had as a dancer is the project “A Fada Oriana” (Ballet for Schools) based on the fairy tale by portuguese author Sophia de Mello Breyner, made in collaboration with four other colleagues Paulina Santos, Catarina Lourenço, Mariana Paz, and Annabelle Barnes from CNB and actress Sara Carinhas. This group was responsible for everything: staging, choreography, rehearsals, costumes, soundtrack and recording…
We also have a beautiful scenery made by Jorge Sacadura Cabral, Alexandra Sobral (scenery painting) and Zeca Galamba (scenery execution), Origami swallows made by colleague Freek Damen and narration by colleague Irina de Oliveira.
Since 2016 we have also the participation of our colleague Fátima Brito, responsible for classes and rehearsals.
The beautiful and efficient technical crew: Vanda França (stage direction), Miguel Osório (supertechnician), Bruno Gonçalves and Paulo Fernandes (sound) and Carla Cruz (Wardrobe)
Communication manager: Cristina de Jesus
Production managers: Carla Almeida and Natacha Fernandes
Dancers: Annabelle Barnes, Brent Williamson, Carla Pereira, Catarina Lourenço, Frederico Gameiro, Isabel Frederico, José Carlos Oliveira, Filipa Pinhão, Maria Barroso, Maria João Pinto, Mariana Paz, Marina Figueiredo, Paulina Santos and Silvia Santos.
We started this project in 2015 supported by CNB and we wish to continue with other projects!… We did a lot of performances in the schools and auditoriums seen by thousands of children!!! 🙂
The first performance was in May 6, 2015 here is the photo:

Fada Oriana first performance 6 May 2015

As a dancer from 2010 to 2015 I participated in other projects and this one is about my work with stage director Ricardo Pais in “Sombras” We performed this production in several festivals in Portugal and around the world: Teatro de São João (Porto), São Luiz Teatro Municipal (Lisboa), Teatro Viriato (Viseu), Centro Cultural Vila Flor (Guimarães), Teatro Micaelense (Azores), Théâtre de la Ville (Paris), Mossoveta Theatre (Moscow), Paulo Autran Theatre (São Paulo), SESC Theatre (Santos), Cidade das Artes (Rio de Janeiro)…

Mário Franco is a principal dancer at CNB National Ballet of Portugal/Companhia Nacional de Bailado