Jorge Machado

Born: August 16th, 1927, Lisbon (Portugal)
Died: July 29th, 2006, Lisbon (Portugal)
Nationality: Portuguese

Jorge Sá Machado studied the piano and cello as well as composition at the Conservatório Nacional in Lisbon. After graduation, he chose for variety music and formed a band, the Conjunto Jorge Machado. Machado led many ensembles and bands; from the 1960s until the early 1990s, he worked as a conductor for many television programmes at RTP, the national broadcaster. As a studio arranger, he worked with renowned artists, including António Calvário, Simone de Oliveira, and Madalena Iglésias. Between 1974 and 1986, he wrote music for theatre, including the revue ‘Até parece mentira’. In 1996, Machado formed a students’ choir at the Universidade Lusófona, Lisbon. The last forty years of his live, he regularly played the piano in the bar of Hotel Tivoli, also in Lisbon.

Jorge Machado was a conductor in the Eurovision Song Contest only once, but his involvement in the Portuguese preselection, the Festival RTP da Canção, went much further, having composed one song in 1964 (‘Finalmente’ for Artur Garcia) and having arranged thirteen hopefuls between 1970 and 1979, of which he conducted eight. In 1980, Machado was the musical director of the Portuguese heats, conducting all entries, sung by artists such as Madi, Dina, SARL (a group which included Carlos Alberto Moniz and Pedro Osório), and Doce. He accompanied the winner, José Cid, to the international final in The Hague. Cid’s song ‘Um grande, grande amor’ was arranged by Mike Sergeant and, conducted by Machado, finished seventh – equalling the best Portuguese result in the festival to date.

In due course, a more extensive biography of Jorge Machado will be published on this website


Songs conducted
1980: Um grande, grande amor