music on the orla

Sopras Searching for a Piccolo

Posted in: by Kathryn Macdonald on 5 May 2013
Tagged with: Brazil 2013 0

On Saturday , the sun was hot and we took a taxi to Nova Cidade, another " significant " area of Maraba that looked very much like a shanty town; hot and dusty and the shabby shops closed for the weekend. The purpose of the visit was so Dan could drop of some photos of the project for inclusion in an exhibition at the only art gallery in Maraba. The owner of the gallery was a 
delightful, smiling woman who was very pleased to welcome us to her beautiful  space which houses a gallery and as well as  art and music classes.
The artistic community is very small and quite intertwined, relationships are complex, in some cases and on some occasions politically driven and are therefore uncertain . There is a great deal of walking on egg - shells, the gallery owner seemed like a good egg.  After the gallery we took refuge from the searing heat in an air conditioned ice cream parlour and tried rather too many flavours. There are tastes and smells here that I haven't experienced anywhere else and find that I don't have the vocabulary to describe them, it's very strange! 
The afternoon is spent with a final rehearsal for Pete and the Sopras. What a lovely, lovely bunch of young people; Sandoval, Marlon, Iago, Tiago, Davide and feisty Evany! They have worked so well with Pete over the course of this week and have committed to almost daily sessions, they have worked hard and learned a lot and also had so much fun. It has been a joy to watch. I They were so thrilled with the instruments that we brought from home. We now need to find a piccolo with some urgency that Dan can bring back to Brazil after his next visit to the Uk in 2 weeks.

The day finished with a delicious dinner cooked by Evany's mum, she is one of many street food vendors who work on the Orla at the weekend. The food is very local , I think what I ate is called Patoba, shrimps in a kind of sauce that looks like curry but doesn't taste like it with rice and salad again made from vegetables that have no name or equivalent in English. We had a final drink in a bar on a large boat moored on the river, coke for Pete and mineral water for me, Dan is on the wagon and this is having an impact on us all !

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