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Mísia

(18 June, 1955)

Mísia was born in Oporto, where she lived until her late teens and sang as amateur in various Casas de Fado. In her 20s she moved to Barcelona for family reasons. After many different jobs, in 1991 she decides to return to Portugal and to Lisbon to build her own repertoire within the world of Fado. 

Lacking a specific audience for her personal and modern style, pioneer and free-spirited Mísia opened her own path. It was the beginning of the New Fado, according to Manuel Halpern: "Time boundaries are always hard to create. However, if we were to set a date for the beginning of the New Fado it would be March 1991, when Mísia launched her first album. Everything prior to that is a kind of pre-history." (Manuel Halpern in O Futuro da Saudade (D. Quixote, 2004)).

 She got in touch with various Portuguese poets and composers, singers and authors, photographers, designers, and stylists in order to entice them with her brand new vision of Fado. Agustina Bessa-Luís writes her unique poem for Mísia’s voice, José Saramago, José Luis Peixoto, Lídia Jorge, Vasco Graça Moura, Mário Cláudio, Paulo José Miranda, Hélia Correia, Manuela de Freitas, Jorge Palma, Vitorino and Sérgio Godinho write lyrics for her specific voice. She found her own sound. She recorded with the traditional guitar trio and sometimes added the instruments she would listen to in the streets of Oporto as a child – accordion and violin. With this “modern” Fado she reaches her first successes in Spain, Japan, Germany and Portugal, where she is awarded a Medalha de Mérito (2005) and the Prémio Amália Rodrigues in the Categoria Divulgação Internacional (2011).

 In France she receives the Medaille de Vermeil (2004) – the highest honour from the city of Paris, and is appointed Oficier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres de la République Française (2011). The Chilean director Carmen Castillo directs two films on Mísia for the French/German network ARTE. The conceptual artist Sophie Calle invites her to her Prenez Soin de Vous project – the French representative at the 52nd Venice Biennale (2007).

 The album "Tanto Menos Tanto Mais" (1995) is awarded the Grand Prix de l'Academie Charles Cros in France. "Garras dos Sentidos" sells over 250,000 records and was released in 62 countries. "Paixões Diagonais" includes the pianist Maria João Pires. "Canto" is fully inspired by the music by Carlos Paredes and has poems by Vasco Graça Moura, Pedro Tamen and Sérgio Godinho, and receives the Record Critic Award in Germany.

Fanny Ardant, Ute Lemper, Carmen Maura, Miranda Richardson and Maria de Medeiros participate in "Drama Box" (2005). Apart from the disk one "Fado (Lisboarium)", in the double album "Ruas" (2009) she also sings music and singers from other countries ("& Tourists" - disk two) symbolising the tragic meaning of life in Fado. Versions by Nine Inch Nails, Joy Division, Camaron de la Isla, Dalida, etc.

With "Senhora da Noite" in 2012, Mísia returns to the Traditional Fado musical heritage. This album is a first in its kind because the lyrics are all written by women – 13 Fados, 13 women. Writers, poets, authors, Fado singers, singers. Agustina Bessa Luís, Florbela Espanca, Manuela de Freitas, Hélia Correia, Amélia Muge, Lídia Jorge and many more. John Turturro directs the video-clip of "O Manto da Rainha" (2011), a text by Mísia herself. 

Mísia is a “character voice” that stars alternative projects to her career in Fado. Some examples of this versatility are Story of a Solder by Stravinski (Festival El Grec Barcelona, 2008), Seven Deadly Sins by Kurt Weill and Bertold Brecht (Teatro Nacional São Carlos and Münchner Prinzregententheater, 2007), Maria de Buenos Aires by Piazzolla and Ferrer (Teatro Nacional São Carlos, 2007), as well as her participation in the album Mediterrâneo (2013) by the Barroco band L'Arpeggiata. In 2013 she plays a part in the play The Invisible Slaughter by Karin Serres.

 In 2013 she launched the conceptual album Delikatessen Café Concerto (2013), with musical direction by the conductor Fabrízio Romano from Naples, and the participation of Ramón Vargas, Adriana Calcanhotto, Paulo Furtado (The Legendary Tigerman), Melech Mechaya, Iggy Pop and Dead Combo.

 Mísia premieres two new concerts in 2014. "Tributo a Amália Rodrigues" - 4ª Edição do Festival de Fado de Madrid. São 3 - Caymmi, Lupicínio & Cartola - 21ª Edição do Festival Porto Alegre in Cena, Brazil. Adriana Calcanhotto invites her to sing themes by these three Brazilian composers and to translate them into the musical language of Fado, accompanied by the three guitars. The following year Mísia sang with the Bremer Philarmoniker a repertoire encompassing both Fado and Schubert’s lieder. In 2016 she released her latest work. This record marks the return of one of the top Fado singers and encompasses her favourite songs – chosen among her outstanding works - in one single album for the very first time.

 Through her selected works, in "Do Primeiro Fado Ao Último Tango" Mísia takes us in an extraordinary journey through her long and brilliant career. Twenty-five years after her first record was released, the story of Mísia is made by a handful of outstanding albums and memorable concerts throughout the world. And then there are those songs that became part of us. The ones in this medley are part of the story of Fado over the last 25 years.

"Pura Vida (Banda Sonora)", released in April 2019, is her latest album and, according to herself, is the soundtrack of two difficult years where there was "hell, hardness and passion".

 

Source:

UGURU;

“Expresso”, 17 de Outubro de 1998;

“Público”, 15 de Outubro de 1999;

“DNA”, 22 de Julho de 2000;

“Público”, 19 de Novembro de 2004;

“Sábado”, 20 de Maio de 2005;

“Visão”, 26 de Maio de 2005;

Baptista-Bastos (1999), "Fado Falado", Col. "Um Século de Fado", Lisboa, Ediclube;

Halpern, Manuel (2004), "O Futuro da Saudade", Lisboa, Dom Quixote;

Pons, Hervé (2007), "Os Fados de Mísia", Ed. Oceanos.

Mísia - Para Amália (C.B. Aragão)

Mísia, 2006

Mísia - Festa do Fado, 2009 (José Frade)

Mísia (C.B. Aragão)

  • Noite Mísia (Vasco de Lima Couto / Max)