Catching Up

Great sleep and a morning to sit on the bed and write emails and start to think about the next phase of my working life. Writing to the Board at More Music, to the partners and collaborators for the SOUND GAMES project and a flock of mails to people in Hong Kong and China for the April R&D trip. Quite calm in expectation of the arrival back to the UK and the 10 days of activity travelling up and down to London for birthdays and conferences!


I have always wanted to get my hands round this particular instrument. Great friend Mat from Edinburgh has always inspired me so when I arrived here it was a first question and today Evany is to give me a session. Here hands have such and light flexibility compared to clunky wrists. Slowly it gets going. This is the start of a good adventure!


The football will be at 7 pm and we go early to get our tickets and check it out. The ticket office is amazing – talk about a hole in the wall.

The match is a some sort of regional championship between the local team and one from Belem. Following my season of R&D at the Globe in Morecambe I am very curious how the music will play a part in the match here and excited. It is so hot that we go for a beer at the bar opposite the stadium.

Love the umbrella over the TV.

Chilling on the Orla

We are very relaxed today after an intense week of activity. Plannng meetings with the young people seem to have developed into a plan for a community event on Sunday night as a farewell so leaflets have been printed and taken house by house round the community. I wonder whether this will go to plan? A little later we wander down the Orla and sit under a tree and watch the river traffic go by.


Everything from the bigger boats to the jet skis, the macho speed boats to the little putputs. Chugging upstream or just floating back down on the intense fast flow. 2 boys from Cabelo Seco are out in the middle of the flow being carried back… at a pace.

That must be so exciting… eve if there are jacarai (crocodiles). We wander a little further down and sit on the top deck of a decrepid floating restaurant where the waitress is very spaced out and takes ages to get our drinks while we watch the sun set and the bats come flying out. This is good!

Aguia de Maraba

Yes… finally I am in the place ready for the match.

Frisked completely as we arrive and the number of police and guardia civil is intense. There are tall grills behind each end and we sit in the covered stand on recommendation from friends. It is half full probably with 1500 people in a stadium very similar to the Globe in size.

The band arrives in parade outside and take their place at the home end – about 20 players I would guess with surdos and snares and intense shakers. Women come round with food (minced turtle and mayo in little pastries), young kids with coke and water and men with chocolate and gum. As the match start the band start a simple beat and it doesn’t stop at all exept for moments when there is a free kick for the other side or a moment break. There is no singing at all. We go one up in 5 minutes and they then score. Before alf time we go ahead again! Hooray. At halftime the fully armed police with riot shields and rifles go out onto the pitch and accompany the officials of the pitch! What great theatre !

The quality of the play is similar to Morecambe – fairly uninventive with few outstanding moments! But we win and there is general cheer! We head off to meet Manoela and eat a pizza and watch life go by along the Orla at night. It is good!

Cabelo Seco at night

We arrive back at midnight to a very quiet Cabelo Seco. We chat to Elvis on the street and agree to try and have a play tomorrow. The music is booming from a house on the square. Mosquito net out and sleep comes quick!