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A composer/singer/dancer in the genres of ciranda, coco, and maracatu, Lia de Itamaracá in her 43-year career has become a major cultural reference for Pernambuco and Brazil, even if she has spent her life in the outskirts of the media. Her innumerable compositions were never written and she keeps them all in her head.

One of the last representatives of the ciranda tradition, she has been living in poverty as the cooker at the public junior and high school of the Itamaracá island (near Recife, Pernambuco), as a tourist guide, and also doing local performances in bars and restaurants. Her stage name came from a broadly popular ciranda done as a tribute to her in 1962 by Teca Calazans, which went like "Essa ciranda quem me deu foi Lia/Que mora na Ilha de Itamaracá."

After the recording of her first album, Rainha da Ciranda (1977), she had access to nationwide exposure through the powerful Fantástico show (TV Globo), but she quickly felt in ostracism and spent over 20 years without recording again. But she never gave up composing and doing local performances. In 1998, rediscovered by producer Beto Hees, she participated in the 1998 Abril Pro Rock Festival with success. Her second album came in 2000, Eu Sou Lia, having five tracks recorded live during the Vozes do Mundo project realized at the Banco do Brasil cultural center (Rio) in 1998. The title track was written especially for her by Paulinho da Viola. While the new album brought new opportunities for national and especially regional performances, she continues to carry on her simple way of life on Itamaracá island.

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Lia de Itamaraca

Lia de Itamaraca

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