A cappella steadily continues to increase in popularity thanks to YouTube stars Walk Off the Earth and Pentatonix, and movies such as the multi-million-dollar grossing “Pitch Perfect” series are shining the spotlight on this unique vocal tradition.
Using voice as a primary instrument, a cappella artists cover everything from classic rock songs to hip-hop hits and Top 40 tunes.
In January 2019, mega-hot Brazilian vocal group Ordinarius will embark on its inaugural US tour. This band of six singers and a percussionist combine the novelty of a cappella with songs accompanied by cavaquinho (a small Portuguese string instrument), guitar, ukulele, and drums.
Its repertoire includes everything from American pop (Stevie Wonder) to rock (The Beatles), and from Brazilian bossa nova to samba – and even the instrumental genre of “choro.”
Made up of members Augusto Ordine (musical director), Maíra Martins, Mateus Xavier, Rebeca Vieira, Fabiano Salek, Matias Correa, and Beatriz Coimbra, Ordinarius has breathed new life into Brazil’s most beloved songs using vibrant harmonies, Brazilian rhythms, and a fun, engaging stage presence.
The group’s cover of The Backstreet Boys’ “As Long As You Love Me” was recommended by BSB themselves on Twitter and Facebook, garnering new fans and listeners from all over the world.
After winning first place in the National Vocal Group Competition in Rio de Janeiro in 2014, Ordinarius ended its year with a crowdfunding campaign to record a new album dedicated to the “choro” genre.
The group has now toured Brazil and Europe, with fans worldwide and hundreds of thousands of views on its YouTube channel.
Ordinarius has also participated in numerous educational events (several of its members are music instructors), including teaching Brazilian music workshops in Frankfurt where they were invited to perform at Brotfabrik.
In 2017, the award-winning group was introduced to American audiences in New York City, instantly becoming a favorite, sold-out act at music festivals everywhere. The group also successfully raised funds for the recording of its latest album, Notável, dedicated to renowned Portuguese-Brazilian singer Carmen Miranda.
Participating in the SESC São Paulo Circuit, the group performed in 9 different cities in the interior of São Paulo. Ordinarius also participated in the Asunción to Voices festival in Paraguay, and the Auvernier Jazz Festival in Switzerland.
Ordinarius’ U.S. tour will include selections from Notável. One of the most outstanding artists in the 1930s in Brazil and the 1940s in the U.S., Carmen Miranda was famous worldwide for her comedic cameos speaking and singing in accented English in Hollywood films.
Ordinarius will present original arrangements of her classics such as “Tico-tico no fubá,” “Na Baixa do Sapateiro,” “Disseram que eu voltei americanizada,” and “O que é que a baiana tem.”
This musical journey through Miranda’s repertoire is accompanied by the aesthetic reimagining of Miranda’s famed visual concept; the colorful costumes and fruit-inspired props she drew up herself as a way of sharing Brazilian culture with the world.
In addition to Ordine’s musical direction, scenic supervision by Flávio Paiva, scenography by Ana Rezende, and lighting by Fernanda Montavani will create a fabulously bright, compelling, and unbelievable atmosphere that celebrates not only the legacy of Carmen Miranda, but Brazilian culture as a whole.
Ordinarius will perform live at the Oshman Family JCC in Palo Alto at 8:00pm on Thursday, January 17, 2019. Tickets are now available at paloaltojcc.org/ordinarius. The group will also visit various locations in Michigan, Minnesota, Iowa, and California during its U.S. tour in 2019. For more information, please visit https://www.eng.ordinarius.com.br/
Steph Keay is a Canadian blogger currently living in the Bay Area. As an arts and lifestyle writer, there is never a shortage of fantastic performances and cultural events to attend between San Francisco and San Jose! She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org