Viana do Castelo is a city of centuries-old agricultural traditions, celebrations and pilgrimages that have always animated this charming region, instilling in the population the habit of dances and songs, which contributed to the growth and multiplication of this cultural seed, translated in a popular expression that is folklore.
On 22nd February 1985, with the intention of making known the uses and customs of this people, in full respect of their most basic social and cultural principles is born, informally, with the designation of the “Grupo Teatral de Danças e Cantares de Perre”, this collectivity, assuming himself as one of the great defenders and promoter of the cultural values of the geographical area that represents.
In the minutes of the foundation the following may be found:
"After representing two shows (10/12/84) and (19/02/85) we verified that we have good conditions to continue, due to the good understanding that exists between the components and the acceptance that we had from the spectators.(...)
1 - The group intends not to let the cultural patrimony characteristic of the parish die in oblivion;
2 - We intend to be a responsible group, properly organized where we all feel good, in a spirit of community service;
3 - We will develop culture, especially in young people occupying their free time;
4 - Nine years after this first milestone in the life of this association - in 1994 – it was th
Legally constituted, with notarial deed of 3rd July of that same year, having adopted the designation of “Grupo de Danças e Cantares de Perre”. According to a dispatch published in Diário da República, nº 281, series II, this association was then recognized as a public corporation.
Since then, with renewed enthusiasm every day, it never stopped, unfolding in research and collection, along with the brilliant representations at festivals, pilgrimages and folklore festivals. Thanks to its dynamism and quality of costumes, songs and dances, it was acquiring prestige and being required a little throughout the country, marking also presence in several countries of Europe and America.
Nowadays the “Grupo de Danças e Cantares de Perre” is a cultural association that preserves and reveal the traditions, uses and customs of the people of Perre, relative to the end of the 19th century, beginning of the 20th century, trying to faithfully reproduce the period at the level songs, dances and costumes.
During the first years the group's installations were in the residence of its first director, D. Judite Cardoso, where the rehearsals were also held. Nowadays, this association has its own social installation, where it develops several activities that involve not only people of Perre as people of others parishes.