Arts: Fabiana Cozza
The sensuous rhythms of Afro-Brazilian samba
Brazilian samba singer Fabiana Cozza believes in the healing power of art. “Sometimes, after the show, people come to me and say, ‘Fabiana, I came here a little sad or with a headache but now I’m so happy and well,’” she says. “As artists, we can transform bad things into good things. This is the power of music.”
Expect many transformations at the Cistern this June as Cozza makes her U.S. debut, sharing the roots of the century-old genre and “the dialogue between samba and other Afro-Brazilian rhythms,” as well as samba-jazz, a hybrid that arose in the 1960s. Her personal style is a confluence of Brazilian artists Elizeth Cardoso, Cartola, Elis Regina, Clara Nunes, Clementina de Jesus, and others. However, the “expressive interpreter” also feels a responsibility to honor her American influences, particularly Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday, and Nina Simone.
Although most of her repertoire is sung in Portuguese, festivalgoers needn’t worry about any potential language barrier. Cozza says her solution “is to dance and use my body to express the feelings of the song,” thereby elevating the performance to a more intuitive, spiritual plane. No doubt Spoleto audiences will take away a touch of her beautiful spirit, crying, as they do in Brazil, Linda maravilhosa!
June 4 & 5,
Friday & Saturday, 9 p.m.
College of Charleston
Photographs (main) by JoÃo Castilo,
Courtesy of Spoleto Festival USA;
(thumb) Courtesy of Fabiana Cozza