Biography

Estevão Amarante, a Portuguese actor and singer, was a regular idol in his country for over two decades. Born in Lisbon on January 9, 1889 (and not 1894 as most biographies erroneously claim), his future was not all mapped out. Born into a very poor family, he lost his father while he was still very young. But the boy had an asset, a good voice, and he got noticed for that. Which resulted in his being hired as of 1900 (he was eleven) for "A Viagem de Suzette", a light opera by Léon Vasser. One year later, Estavão joined "O Teatro do Infante", a children's theater company. He concomitantly appeared in works for adults, spoken dramas, revues or operettas (like "A Casta Susana" in 1909). His growing good looks and growing talent gained him growing success, particularly from 1910 to the early 1930s, where he shone in many a revue and an operetta, singing tremendously successful fados. He had become the actor-singer of his generation. But after 1932, his star as a singer paled and he turned to spoken theater, working with great regularity. He also appeared before the cameras but Portuguese directors and producers failed to give him worthwhile parts. His eight roles on the big screen are a disappointment compared with his glorious stage career. Estevão Amarante died in Porto on December 12, 1951 exactly one year after celebrating the 50th anniversary of his debut