Arts & Life
Canstar Community News
Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 9/12/2014 (2043 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
You can take the boy out of Brazil, but you can’t take Brazil out of the boy.
Marco Castillo — a singer-songwriter and producer who moved to Winnipeg from Rio de Janeiro eight years ago and currently lives in River Park South — has been announced as one of the finalists at the prestigious 2015 Viña del Mar music festival in Chile. The festival will run from Feb. 15 to 28, 2015.
Organizers at Folklorama, who Castillo is heavily-involved with in a creative capacity, say the international song contest, which has been held annually since 1960, is one of the most important musical festivals in Latin America and is broadcast to more than 100,000,000 viewers. Castillo’s original composition, Forró no Canadá, from his 2014 album Zabelê, is one of six finalists in the folkloric category of the competition and was short-listed from more than 1,100 songs submitted in that category.
The 51-year-old, who hails from a musical background and is also the band leader with the Brazilian Beats Band, said music has always been in his blood and helps to keep him youthful — not least because of all the hard work involved behind the scenes.
"I do what I love to do. Yesterday I was up at 7 a.m. and the first thing I did was drink two glasses of warm water before breakfast. Some people have no idea how hard an independent musician works," Castillo said.
Looking out the front window of his southeast Winnipeg home at the frozen landscape, Castillo seemed a million miles away from his native Brazil. But it’s the language of music that keeps him connected to his South American roots and continues to endear him to audiences across the continent.
"For me, when I moved to Canada in 2006, a big challenge was learning English. I came from the most beautiful city in the world, where winter doesn’t seem like winter at all," said Castillo, who also teaches private music lessons in his basement studio.
"When I was young, I lived two blocks from Copacabana Beach and I would study in the morning and then spend time every weekday on the beach."
In terms of his musical style, Castillo has bridged numerous genres throughout the generations, ranging from playing the likes of Jeff Beck, Deep Purple and Rush with his school band as a teen to establishing his current groove, which is interchangeably described as samba, jazz, funk, pop and world music.
"I’m very privileged to be able to express myself through music. I consider it a gift and it’s one of the most precious and intriguing things we have. It’s fascinating how music alters the conscious mind and from a scientific perspective, how music affects the brain," Castillo said.
"And in terms of the Viña del Mar festival, I think it’s going to be a really interesting since my father, Tony, played the festival in the ’70s. With so many people watching, it’s going to be exciting and a bit nerve-racking, but it’s normal to be a little nervous, as it is part of the deal. But I’m confident and I’ll do my best and see how it goes."
For more information, go online at www.folklorama.ca/performers/detail/36
Community journalist — The Lance
Simon Fuller is the community journalist for The Lance. Email him at email@example.com Call him at 204-697-7111
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