Lia de Itamaracá



An icon of the ciranda in Brazil and a living heritage of Pernambuco's culture, Lia has recently released her new album, and is now touring around with a show featuring her compositions, by authors of Brazilian popular music and from the public domain.

Her legendary album "Ciranda de Ritmos", by dona Lia, has toured almost all over Brazil and three times in Europe, and promotes a meeting between coco, maracatu, frevo, maxixe, and ciranda. Lia performs in an unprecedented manner, and surprises not only with her repertoire the Rainha da Ciranda, but also as an interpreter of Lia's own compositions, such as "Moça Namoradeira" and "Santa Tereza," as well as songs by Bezerra do Sax, Baracho, and Capiba, and MPB classics by Dorival Caymmi, Clementina de Jesus, Martinho da Vila, and Chico César.

Dona Lia is a stunning woman, one hundred and eighty centimeters tall, with long fingers, a strong voice and a broad smile, Maria Madalena Correia do Nascimento transformed her native island of Itamaracá, on the northern coast of Pernambuco, into her artistic surname. She became "Lia de Itamaracá" at the age of 12, when she started participating in the "Ciranda". The "Ciranda" is a cultural manifestation marked by a dance in which people hold hands and move rhythmically and harmoniously, forming a big circle. "I lost count of how many times I went to Jaguaribe beach to sing and dance ciranda," he recalls. "But it was there that the desire to become a cirandeira, the person who animates and enlivens the ciranda, was born."


Lia de Itamaracá (75 years old), was born and has always lived on the Island of Itamaracá. The singer, songwriter, and dancer is an icon of northeastern culture, a key figure of the ciranda in Brazil, and a living heritage of the state of Pernambuco.

She influenced the music of Chico Science & Nação Zumbi and of the manguebeat generation, and was honored by Paulinho da Viola with the verses "I am Lia from the sea shore, a brunette burned by the salt and the sun, from the Island of Itamaracá", in the composition "I Am Lia".

In Brazil Lia had her name mentioned in verses by Pernambuco composers Lenine and Otto, and music critics compare her to Clementina de Jesus.

In 2000, her album Eu Sou Lia was released by Ciranda Records and reissued by Rob Digital, whose repertoire included coco de raiz and maracatu loas, as well as cirandas accompanied by percussion and saxophone.  The album ended up being distributed in France by a world music label, and Lia's raspy voice caught the attention of the international press, who began to baptize her songs as trance music, in an attempt to explain the "trance" that the sound caused in the public.

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