Originally published in Compass, July 19, 2012
Brazilian jazz, parade to kick off jazz festival
Opera House Arts presents “Samba Meets Jazz” Saturday, July 28, a day of events featuring legendary Brazilian musicians in concert, teaching a free batucada drumming workshop and leading an Opera House Centennial Celebration parade down Stonington’s Main Street.
The day kicks off more than a week of jazz-related events leading up to the 12th annual Deer Isle Jazz Festival August 2-5. The evening concert features the Brazilian bossa nova legend, vocalist Leny Andrade. The events will be led by Brazilian bassist Nilson Matta, along with percussionist Café and guitarist Roni Ben-Hur.
The New York Times has called Bossa Nova legend Andrade “both the Sarah Vaughn and the Ella Fitzgerald of Brazil.”
Matta is a premier Brazilian bassist and composer who has been based in New York City since 1985. He is known for his work with Trio Da Paz, Don Pullen African Brazilian Connection, Joe Henderson, Yo Yo Ma and Nilson Matta’s Brazilian Voyage.
Ben-Hur migrated from Israel to New York City in 1985. He was most recently featured at Lincoln Center Jazz.
Café—coffee in Portuguese—is the nickname of the great Brazilian percussionist, singer, songwriter, and producer whose career has garnered international recognition and respect.
The batucada drumming tradition is a substyle of samba that evokes Brazilian Carnivale, or Mardi Gras. It is an African-influenced Brazilian drumming style, characterized by its repetitive style and fast pace and usually performed by an ensemble known as a Bateria.
The batucada workshop, beginning at 2 p.m., and parade following the workshop are free. Reservations for workshop spaces are required. Call 367-2788 to reserve your space. To purchase advanced tickets, visit operahousearts.org/music.html.