A special message from Paulo Padilha

By Paulo Padilha

Oi, Amigos! / Hello, my friends!

It has been many days since we arrived home after the second part of Arts Midwest Tour. I am still putting things in place, but I feel that’s absolutely necessary to talk about this wonderful experience that me and my friends have lived in the program.

Maybe my English skills are not enough to explain how this program was important for us, but I’m not worried, because my Portuguese skills would not be enough, too!!

Actually, it is impossible to describe in words the richness of this experience. A range of different situations that made me feel in a roller coaster of sensations.

Sometimes, I felt like a character in a Quentin Tarantino movie, in that crazy Dakota Magic Casino at Sisseton. Sometimes, I felt in an anthropologic expedition, playing and exchanging experiences and souvenirs with Native American Indians, trying to make connections through our sensibility and music.

Or even in an arctic expedition, driving in the snow looking at the frozen lakes, and trying to keep warm for the next job. Sometimes (and this was everyday) proud of my team, that worked hard and well, proud of representing my country and my culture. Grateful by the way people paid attention at each detail of our performance. Thankful of having the opportunity to see people enjoying and understanding my songs, despite of language, buying CDs, asking for autographs, asking questions in the workshops, having fun, sharing the stage with us, playing carnaval and understanding our Brazilian spirit.

On stage at a school workshop in St. Paul, MN. Photo by Joshua Feist.
School workshop in St. Paul, MN. Photo by Joshua Feist.

We were, at the same time ambassadors in the receptions, teachers in the schools, performers on the stage, workers carrying the equipment for the workshops, tourists learning and observing new things, knowing new people, and making new friends.

I made the math:

11 states, 12 cities, 87 workshops, 17 concerts, about 22000 people, 280 CDs.

I have to check how many miles, yet!

In all the cities without exception, U.S. people made us feel very welcomed and comfortable.

Please, spread this words to all the people from Arts Midwest and sponsors, partners, audiences, students, teachers, from all the cities, towns, communities, schools, theaters, bars, nursing homes and libraries we visited.

Thanks U.S. people! / Obrigado!

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