Portuguese puppet company. The theatre was created in 1993, under the artistic direction of Luís Vieira, by a group of theatre, film, sculpture and art historian professionals who wished to bring puppet theatre back to life in Portugal.

The company’s name, “A Tarumba”, a Spanish word evoking something that makes one insane, is an homage to Federico García Lorca and Miguel Prieto during the Spanish Civil War. The company’s mission is to develop high quality technical and artistic work while constantly seeking to innovate. Since 1993, A Tarumba has produced such plays as Dr. Faustus by Christopher Marlowe, Amor de Don Perlimplín… (The Love of Don Perlimplín…) by García Lorca, A Tempestade (The Tempest) by William Shakespeare, and Ascensão e Queda da Cidade de Mahagonny (Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny) by Bertolt Brecht, targeting a mostly adult audience, frequently using string puppets but also other more contemporary techniques.

A Tarumba has regularly toured and participated in international festivals. At the 2001 World Puppetry Arts Festival in Prague, the company won the Prize for best  dramaturgy and was nominated for best manipulation for their production of Amor de Don Perlimplín. The company also organizes experimental workshops, promotes work developed with paper theatre (also called toy theatre), and exhibits its special collection of toy and puppet theatre works.

As part of their promotion of puppet theatrical arts, each year the company takes charge of producing and programming the Festival International de Marionetas e Formas Animadas (FIMFA Lx, International Puppetry and Animated Forms Festival) held in Lisbon. In 2010, A Tarumba was awarded the Prémio da Crítica (Critics Prize) by the Associação Portuguesa de Críticos de Teatro (Portuguese Association of Theatre Critics) for the quality of the festival. In 2007, the company opened the CAMa – Centro de Artes da Marionetas (Puppetry Arts Centre) – for the development of contemporary puppetry projects, and a documentation centre located in the same building as the Museu da marioneta (Puppet Museum).

(See Portugal.)


  • Almeida, Raquel. “As suas mãos dão vida a marionetas: à conversa com Luís Vieira” [Your Hands Give Life to Puppets: A Conversation with Luís Vieira]. Correio da Manhã. Magazine Domingo. 23 October 2001.
  • Carneiro, João. “A expressão privilegiada do teatro: o FIMFA e João Paulo Seara Cardoso” [Outstanding Expression of Theatre: the FIMFA and João Paulo Seara Cardoso]. Sinais de Cena [Signs of the Scene/Stage]. No. 15. June 2011.
  • FIMFA Lx4: Festival Internacional de Marionetas e Formas Animadas. Programa [International Puppetry and Animated Forms Festival. Programme]. Lisboa: A Tarumba – Teatro de Marionetas, 2004.
  • Os Fios d’A Tarumba [The Wires of A Tarumba]. Lisboa: EGEAC/Museu da Marioneta, 2010.[S]
  • Pissarra, Gisela. “A tarimba da Tarumba”. A Capital. Teatro. 4 August 2002.
  • Festival Internacional de Marionetas e Formas Animadas: FIMFA Lx Edição Comemorativa dos 10 Anos [International Puppetry and Animated Forms Festival: FIMFA Lx 10th Year Commemorative Edition]. Lisboa: A Tarumba – Teatro de Marionetas/EGEAC/Museu da Marioneta, 2010.