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AJAs 2020 Finalists

The Mystery of the Portuguese Waltzes


Date Aired or Published Aired in two parts. Part one was aired April 05, 2020 and part two was aired April 12,2020
Media outlet where first aired or published: CBC
Name of Program: Atlantic Voice
If co-produced, list partner:
Location: St. John's, Newfoundland
List awards, grants: None
Running time (TV/Radio): 58:18

Short explanation of the story and how it developed:

This piece is a meditation on memory and the elusive nature of truth. It follows musician Richard Simas on his quest to find the origins of the Newfoundland folk tune known as “The Portuguese Waltzes.” Richard’s quest takes him from small fishing villages in Northern Portugal, back to St. John’s, Newfoundland. Richard dreams of reuniting these two cultures and in the process hopes to reconnect with his own long-lost Portuguese identity. But this turns out to be much more complicated than he thought. Because like the 'The Portuguese Waltzes’ memories about this time are made up of many threads. Part fact and part legend, with differing accounts of where and by whom the song was created. Richard has to peel back the layers of memory and folklore to try and find the answer. My piece follows him on this journey, and all of its twists and turns.

Resources of the newsroom (money and time) available to complete the story:

This piece was produced as a freelance piece and sold to CBC's Atlantic Voice.

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