"Virgínia's voice is an ethereal pure contralto with almost sacred overtones . . ."
"Virgínia conjures a timeless, mystical Brazil where nature and
spirit worlds meet and where the songs of the Afro-Brazilian pantheon
share the purity of Gregorian chant."
The New York Times
"Virgínia Rodrigues is the new diva of Brazilian music. The
33-year old from Bahia has stunned all of Brazil with her heavenly mix
of Portuguese and African influences and rootsy samba."
Friday 19th March 04 8pm Liberty Hall Eden Quay D1
When it comes to music, Brazil is more than a vast country. It is a state of mind, a magical place where music courses through the veins of its citizens without impedance, insinuating itself into every facet of life. From the favelas of Sao Paolo to the glamour of Rio de Janeiro, omnipresent rhythms keep time for every ritual, from religion to futbol. Out of this musical wonder has emerged a singer to bring its heritage into the new millennium and onto to the world's greatest concert stages. Her name is Virginia Rodrigues.
Born in 1964 into the grinding poverty of a Salvador favela, she left school at age twelve, taking work as a cook and cleaner to help support her family. In her spare time she sang in church choirs, a formative experience that nurtured her extraordinary voice, an unforced contralto of classical dimension in its purity of timbre and intonation. Like Cuba, Brazil is home to a spiritual duality, and Virginia also became an initiate of Candomble, the polytheist sect that fuses the Yoruba faith of West African origin with elements of Catholicism, and gives positive expression to Brazil's largely black culture. Between these two identities lies the power in Virginia Rodrigues, a bridge between the sacred and the secular, austerity and abandon.That quality was not lost on Caetano Veloso, the legendary songwriter of the Tropicalismo movement, who has mentored her talent on three acclaimed albums, the latest of which, Mares Profundos, is for Deutsche Grammaphon's new imprint EDGE Music. Imbued with the sophistication that sets Brazilian music apart, it brings Rodriguez full circle, back to the cycle of twelve Afro -Sambas written by the revered composers Vinicius De Moraes and Baden Powell in 1966. When she sings these beautiful songs in Dublin in 2004, she will win your heart.