Ateneu Luso Americano Club at 120 Covel Street in Fall River, MA held its annual Grande Noite de Fado this past Saturday, March 25, 2017.
The event’s featured fado singers included Josefina Couto, Jeremias Macedo, Sonia Bettencourt, José Carlos and a surprise appearance by Luis Duarte, a Luso Canadian fado singer/musician from Quebec, Canada.
The fado singers were accompanied by José Silva on the Portuguese guitar, and by Viriato Ferreira on the viola de fado (classical guitar) by Viriato Ferreira. The two are accomplished fado musicians who live on the East Coast of the United States.
Rui Vieira Nery, a Fado historian and scholar, states that “the only reliable information on the history of fado was orally transmitted and goes back to the 1820s and 1830s at best…”
Fado is a Portuguese musical style usually referred to as the soul of Portugal. It is usually sung by a single person (fadista) and accompanied by a Portuguese guitar (a 12 string guitar) which is played with the thumb and index finger) and a classical guitar (viola de fado).
In 2011 Fado was elevated to the category of ‘Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity’ by UNESCO.
A common theme in fado music lyrics is “saudade”, or “longing” which can be described as a deep emotional state of nostalgic or melancholic longing for something or someone that one loves.
Those who attended the event at Ateneu Luso Americano had a fabulous night of great company, good food, wine and fado music which they will not soon forget.
“Igreja de Santo Estêvão” by Jeremias Macedo and José Carlos accompanied by Jose Silva on Portuguese guitar and Viriato Ferreira on viola de fado