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05 October 2016

From my language, I see the sea

by Philharmonie Luxemburg

«From my language, I see the sea.» The famous quote by poet Vergílio Ferreira could be a good epigraph for «atlântico», the new festival that celebrates the musical traditions of Portuguese-speaking countries. We're kicking it off this weekend with children's concerts and a slew of fantastic concerts will follow throughout the week. Each of them will be an occasion to discover artists and sounds from around the lusophone world... from which originate some 20% of Luxembourg’s population.Francisco Sassetti, our artistic planning manager for jazz and world music, explains the idea underlying the whole festival.

«The mighty ocean, a place of dreams, adventures, dangers, and sorrows, but above all source of infinite riches and discoveries, is both a geographical and a spiritual connection to all those territories that share Portuguese as a common language, in all the abundantly creative dimensions of its different accents and dialects. From the poets of Lisbon’s casas de fado to the endless warm sands of Ipanema; from the ever-changing bay of Luanda to the ancient libraries of Coimbra; from the abandoned roças of São Tomé to the modern skyscrapers of São Paulo; from the salty shores of Cape Verde, or the lively markets of Maputo, to the eternal Amazonian jungle, or to the hesitating cobblestones of Salvador de Bahia, or even to the intense colours of Goa… to mention just a few of the places around the world where almost 300 million people use this same language in their daily life.

Despite turbulent historical links between these countries − in some cases still not fully overcome − a complex colonial past and often challenging present social and political realities, the common sound of the language, the common landscape of the sea, inevitably brings them close together as a community of cultures.


This mixture of cultures gave rise to a multitude of music and dances – from samba to morna, choro to cante alentejano, fado to bossa nova – often linked to the poets, always connected through the blue waves of the ocean, embodied in the timeless songs and voices of Tom Jobim, Amália Rodrigues, Vinícius de Moraes, Cesária Évora, João Gilberto, Carlos Paredes, Chico Buarque… Or by all those who came after to perpetuate and cultivate these very same traditions and the bridges that connect them and the rest of the world, and who will be bringing this very first «atlântico» to life, as representatives of an even broader community of countries, cultures, and musical landscapes.»

Among these representatives, you will find the best and the most touching contemporary artists such as Waldemar Bastos, António Zambujo, Júlio Resende & Moreno Veloso, the Mário Laginha Trio, Dead Combo, Mayra Andrade and the Fala Brasil Trio. If you want to know on what kind of journey we want you to embark, have a listen to our Spotify playlist. Otherwise, just follow the waves to the Philharmonie.



Find the full programme of the «atlântico» festival on the Philharmonie's website.