Eugénia Melo e Castro

Eugénia was born in the city of Covilhã, central inland Portugal, in 1958, and lived in the city until she was 15. She left the city for studying in Lisbon. Her father, Ernesto de Melo e Castro, is a poet, professor and textile engineer (Bradford, United Kingdom) who earned a doctorate in literature from the University of São Paulo, and her mother Maria Alberta Menéres, was a writer. Her grandfather, a chemical engineer, was a noted entrepreneur in the important textiles industrial sector of Covilhã.

Her grandfather Ernesto was a conductor, composer, and violinist. Her first contact with the professional music scene came through collaborative works for José Afonso, Vitorino and Sérgio Godinho, among others. Eugénia studied and lived in different locations during her teen years, and when she was 21, already divorced and mother of a girl, she went to Brazil to pursue her desire of being a singer-songwriter. She maintains houses in São Paulo (Brazil) and in Portugal. Melo e Castro has Portuguese Jewish ancestry.

Her first album, released in 1982,Terra de Mel, included collaborations of several Portuguese and Brazilian musicians. These associations have been often in the rest of her discography. Her music is framed in MPB (Brazilian Popular Music). She made theatre in 1977/78 with A Barraca (Portugal) and appeared in a number of movie and television works.

In 1979, he made contact in Lisbon with Brazilian musicians Yório Gonçalves and Kleiton Ramil, with whom he wrote in partnership the songs that would be recorded for what would be his first album. In 1980, she traveled to Brazil for the first time to invite the pianist and arranger Wagner Tiso.

In January 1982 the album “Terra De Mel” was released. The album “Águas De Todo O Ano” was released in 1983. The single from the song “Dança da Lua” is taken from the album, a theme by Túlio Mourão and Ronaldo Bastos, sung in partnership with Ney Matogrosso. These first two albums won me the prizes for best singer and best record in 1982 and 1983, in Portugal. both discs form platinum discs.

She plays the role of lead actress in the telenovela “António Maria”, also taking over the production of its soundtrack. In the same year, she recorded “Emissário de Um Rei Desconhecido”, a theme by Milton Nascimento for a poem by Fernando Pessoa, included in the album “Música Em Pessoa”, dedicated to the poet. In 1986, “Eugénia Melo E Castro III” appeared, produced by Guto Graça Mello, with musical direction by Toninho Horta, Túlio Mourão, Wagner Tiso and Gilson Peranzetta.

In 1988 she released “Coração Imprevisto”, an album for piano and voice, accompanied by Wagner Tiso. This album is considered one of the 10 best albums of the year, nationally and internationally, in Brazil. The album has the participation of Caetano Veloso in the title theme of the album.

In 1989, the compilation “Canções E Momentos” was published. In 1990, the album “O Amor É Cego E Vê” was published, based on Portuguese themes from the first half of the 20th century. Caetano Veloso, Chico Buarque, Milton Nascimento, Gal Costa, Ney Matogrosso and Simone participate. This record wins a gold record in Portugal. In the same year, she performed her first major concert in Portugal, at Teatro São Luís, directed by Mário Laginha.

In 1991, she recorded the 3rd theme for the children’s animated television series Boa noite, Vitinho!, broadcast by RTP, which was released as a discographic single by the publisher Ovação.

In 1993, she recorded, in Lisbon, “Lisboa, Dentro de Mim (O Sentimento de um Ocidental)”, which was produced by the singer. The album features musicians such as Mário Laginha, Carlos Zíngaro, António Pinho Vargas, Pedro Caldeira Cabral, Márcio Montarroyos, Wagner Tiso and Nico Assumpção. In the same year, the compilation “O Melhor De Eugénia Melo E Castro” was published. In March 1994, she performed live at the CCB, putting 3 grand pianos on stage for guests Wagner Tiso, António Pinho Vargas and Mário Laginha.

In 1995 she returned to Brazil where she recorded “Eugénia Melo e Castro canta Vinícius de Moraes” which included the last recording by Tom Jobim, piano and voice, in “Canta Mais”. It includes other great musicians and instrumentalists, such as Egberto Gismonti. This record resulted in the first major tour in Brazil with more than 50 shows, and which resulted in the first live CD recording, recorded at SESC Pompéia, entitled “Ao Vivo Em São Paulo”.

She returns to filmmaking, as an actress and singer, in 1998 in the film “Bocage, o Triunfo do Amor” by Djalma Limonge Batista. The work is distinguished at the Sundance Festival, in Utha, with the best Artistic Direction.

She idealized and created the television program “Atlântico”, directed and produced in Lisbon in the summer of 1998, with Nelson Motta. It premiered in March 1999, in Portugal on RTP and in Brazil on TV Cultura, and brings together singer-songwriter duos from both countries over 14 weeks.

He recorded “Tanto Mar” for the song-book by Chico Buarque. Record live the CD “Motor Da Luz” with the special participation of Camerata Tiso.

In 2001, a special compilation of 16 Duets recorded over 20 years was released. “Eugénia Melo e Castro.COM” includes some unpublished duets, 3 with Ney Matogrosso, 2 with Caetano Veloso and others with Gal Costa, Simone, Carlos Lyra, Chico Buarque, Gonzaguinha, Tom Jobim, Milton Nascimento, Egberto Gismonti, Wagner Tiso, Toninho Horta and Paulo Jobim.

The model/demo recorded in 1979, with guitar and voice, accompanied by Júlio Pereira and Jaime Queimado, was released on CD by Som Livre in 2002.

In 2002, the CD “Paz” was released, written with the Brazilian producer Eduardo Queiróz. In 2004 the SINGLE CD “dança_da_ lua.2004.doc” was released, only available for download. In 2004 he recorded the albums “Dança da Luz”.

In 2006 he recorded the double CD “DESCONSTRUÇÃO”, dedicated to the authorial work of Chico Buarque, with the participation of Chico Buarque in 3 themes, and Adriana Calcanhotto in another theme.

In October 2006, in São Paulo, she recorded a DVD commemorating the 25th anniversary of the release of her first album. The DVD is released on January 6, 2007, commemorating 25 years of recording career.

In 2007, she was awarded the QUALIDADE BRASIL award for her entire musical work, which was and is fully released in Brazil.

On June 8, 2009 she was made Dame of the Order of Infante D. Henrique.

In 2015, she released her first children’s album, “Conversas com Versos”, 14 poems by her mother, taken from the book of the same name. Ney Matogrosso is her guest on this album, on the track O MEU CHAPÉU.

In 2018 she releases MAR VIRTUAL, piano and voice, with Emilio Mendonça, dedicated to her father’s work, setting experimental poems and concrete poetry to music.

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