Flávia Bittencourt and Mariene De Castro in Conversation & Song: Sources/Fontes
The music of Northeast Brazil is a testament to cultural improvisation. It is also a paradox. Its rhythms, which are often the soundtrack of celebration and joy, have roots in a history of brutal contact between Indigenous peoples, enslaved Africans, and European colonizers. Its lyrics and melodies, which are emulated by artists around the globe, are often made beautiful by images of a natural world under threat. Throughout the region, musicians are drawing upon everything from Indigenous spirituality to Afro-Brazilian religions to reveal creative contradictions and honor those who came before.
Join us for conversation and song with two of Northeast Brazil’s most arresting singers, Flávia Bittencourt from Maranhão and Mariene De Castro from Bahia, as they explore the sources that feed their work and vision. Both are known for creating music that beautifully bears witness to the Nordeste’s history of cultural innovation, tenacity, and resilience. Flávia begins the program in English, then hands over the reins to Mariene who continues in Portuguese. Rio-based musician, arranger, and producer Mauricio Pacheco moderates.