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Marta Pereira da Costa is the World’s first woman to play Portuguese Guitar professionally in Fado.

Marta Pereira da Costa is the World’s first woman to play Portuguese Guitar professionally in Fado.

The Portuguese guitar is well associated with Fado, and Marta, not forgetting her roots and tradition, risked new sounds and gives her instrument a voice in the world of Jazz, World Music and Portuguese Music.

 In 2014 she was distinguished by the Amália Rodrigues Foundation with the “InstrumentalistAward.

 

 

Marta Pereira da Costa began her musical training on the piano at the age of 4; she studied 2 years of classical guitar at age 8; and at 18, she transitioned to the Portuguese Fado Guitar under Carlos Gonçalves, Amália Rodrigues’ guitarist.

 

She graduated in Civil Engineering, and after exercising the profession for 8 years, she abandoned her professional activity in 2012 and dedicated herself exclusively to music and the the Portuguese Guitar, thus starting her solo career.

 

Historically, the Portuguese guitar has always been associated with a man, as a musician, and mostly embraced Fado as a language. However, Marta Pereira da Costa’s project breaks with these roots and presents the Portuguese guitar as a voice.

 

In 2016, she released her debut album with Warner Music Portugal, which featured the participation of well-known names from the World Music scene, such as bassist Richard Bona (ENCONTRO) and from the Portuguese music scene, such as Dulce Pontes, Camané and Rui Veloso.

She performed several concerts in Brazil, USA, Canada, Switzerland, Spain, Netherlands, France, Italy, Slovenia, Romania, Tunisia, Israel, etc. surprising and conquering the public where she has been. The following concerts stoodout: Teatro Tivoli (Lisbon, Portugal), Teatro Braga (Braga, Portugal), NOS Alive (Lisbon), São João do Porto (Portugal), MIMO Festival (São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Amarante, Brazil), Festival de la Guitarra (Cordoba, Spain), Real Teatro Santa Cecilia (Palermo, Italy), SXSW Festival (Austin, Texas), Lincoln Center (New York City) https://youtu.be/ZzV2RU7mfA0 , Kennedy Center (Washington, DC) https://youtu.be/dX3gpR3dBPs & https://youtu.be/SzRW06ICby4, Sala Radio (Bucharest), Recanati Auditorium (Tel Aviv), among others.

Performing in a live instrumental concert, Marta manages to surprise and grab the entire audience that follows her and her Portuguese guitar on a journey through different sounds and environments, in an interpretation guided by sensitivity and delicacy but also intensity, strength and dynamism. She delivers both at intimate concerts as well as surprises audiences with her stamina and energy in outdoor concerts for large audiences (https://youtu.be/nLygbvNdRUw). 

Tradition and innovation, side by side, creates a new path for Portuguese Guitar. Each performance is always a unique, unforgettable and unrepeatable moment. On stage, she adds what cannot be recorded: the heart of the woman who made the guitar an extension of her soul.

MARTA has made the most varied collaborations in concerts: Tiago Bettencourt, Mayra Andrade, Tito Paris, Rui Veloso, Dulce Pontes, Toquinho, Hamilton de Holanda, Maestro Jaques Morelembaum etc.

2019 got off to a great start with a new US Winter tour with 9 coast-to-coast concerts. And then stoped all concerts and tours due to Covid 19.

The post-pandemic start could not have been better. In January 2022 Marta performed at the Dubai Expo, on the day assigned to Portugal. In February, Marta participated as a guest artist in the show by the brasilian maestro and cellist Jaques Morelenbaum at the Jazz Festival in Trancoso, Brazil. In March, she represented Portugal in Dakar, Senegal, at the 9th World Water Forum where she returned to perform on the 10th of June. In April, she returned to Brazil to perform with another huge name in Brazilian music, Toquinho, in São Paulo.

In national territory, she developed two new and innovative projects: Portuguese guitar concert and Jazz Orchestra, and Portuguese guitar and cante Alentejano. In May, she performed 5 concerts in Tel Aviv, Israel. In June, she performed in New York at the Guitar Festival, in a luxury lineup alongside names like Bill Frisell, Badi Assad or Vieux Farka Touré. In July, she traveled to Peru for two concerts as part of the inauguration of the International Book Fair. She performed a coast to coast tour of 7 concerts, passing through the National Gallery and the mythical Blues Alley in Washington DC to Hawaii and 3 more concerts in California.

 

Marta has been increasingly representing Portugal in various official events, such as the Portuguese Presidency of the Council of the European Union, as well as events in Embassies around the world. She accompanied the President of the Republic of Portugsal on a state visit to Ireland where she also performed.

 

In the first half of 2023 Marta produced and recorded her second album, “Canções sem Palavras”. She decided to gather her 2 favorite instruments and invited the pianist and composer Alexandre Diniz. An intimate environment was created, stripped of everything, but bringing the essentials: intention, sensitivity and feeling in each note, chord or silence. The repertoire is varied and features well-known themes from major national and international references, such as Verdes Anos & Summertime, Aranjuez & Spain, as well as compositions by Marta and Alexandre, and other themes from a pianistic universe that were brought to the language of Portuguese Guitar.

 

For the celebrations of the 10th of June, the day of Portugal, it performed in four countries: Greece (Athens) on the 7th, Spain (Barcelona) on the 8th, Bulgaria (Sofia) on the 9th and Italy (Rome) on the 12th. year with partnerships with artists such as Teresa Salgueiro and Mestre António Chainho.

 

In the last quarter of this year, trips are planned to Panama, Costa Rica, USA (showcase in NPR's TINY DESK program), Luxembourg, Brazil and Turkey.

 

Marta Pereira da Costa has been praised throughout the Fado universe, but also outside of it, by several personalities who recognize her enormous value, effort and courage to dedicate herself to a demanding, difficult and hard instrument, and to an art that fascinates her .

 

 

REVIEWS

 

• "Stunning performance." Lincoln Center, USA

• "A richly chiming Lincoln Center debut by Fado guitarist Marta Pereira da Costa. She's funny, and kind of badass: she knew she owned the crowd, and she didn't try to hide it. In the world of fado, she's a rarity , as a woman instrumentalist, composer and bandleader" New York Music Daily, USA

• "Without fear, without shame, she visited Fado houses to learn from the best" Executive Magazine, Portugal

• "This young woman is worth her weight in gold" Diario El Correo, Spain

• "[Marta demonstrates] sustained and arduous growth, substantial musical maturity and, above all, courage to assume herself as a composer". -VIP Magazine, Portugal

• "She IS a woman in a man's world. She breaks with tradition. She has a contemporary vision for the Portuguese Fado guitar that will challenge lovers of the instrument." Vision Magazine, Portugal

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