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Yemanjá Project. Sept 3rd Washington Sq. Park

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The International Brazilian Opera Company (IBOC) presents the ​​Yemanjá Project at Garibaldi Plaza in Washington Square Park on Friday, September 3, 2021 4-6 pm as Part of the Award Program.

August 23, 2021, New York, NY –  IBOC is one of 500 New York City-based artists to receive $5,000 through the City Artist Corps Grants program, presented by The New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA) and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs (DCLA), with support from the Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment (MOME) as well as Queens Theatre.

IBOC was recognized for the Yemanjá Project, which will bring live Afro-Brazilian songs to Washington Square Park in Manhattan on Friday, September 3, 2021, from 4-6 pm. 

João MacDowell (Artistic Director) and The International Brazilian Opera Company will bring its new roster of talent to Washington Square Park with an outdoor concert premiering the Yemanjá Project under Maestro Hugo Sanbone (Brazil). In addition, opera soloists Nelson Ebo (Angola) and Rebecca de Almeida (Brazil), the virtuoso violin of Anna Tsukervanik (Uzbekistan) with the IBOC Band leader Marcelo Maccagnan – contrabass (Brazil) featuring Tainnã Chagas on percussion (Brazil) Benhur Oliveira on drums (Brazil) and Andrew Cheng (Malaysia) on guitar.  IBOC’s choreographer Constance Vellozzi (France) will also participate in the event with a dance performance. Christina Morgan (USA) is serving as the Producer of the event, Jonathan Arak (USA) is Stage Director, and Athena Azevedo (USA) is Film Director. 

The concert marks the launch of Hugo Sanbone’s Yemanjá Project. The band will present a repertoire centered on Afro-Brazilian traditions, harvesting cross-cultural collaborations from the diaspora. 

José Hugo dos Santos became Maestro Sanbone when his virtuosity on the accordion (sanfona) and the trombone was first noted. Sanbone is a product of the prolific contemporary music scene of Salvador Bahia, Brazil, and his work with the Sanbone Pagode Orchestra has brought the styles of Afro-Brazilian popular dance rhythms with their large percussion ensembles into a big-band instrumentation context that is often symphonic in the scope of his composition. 

The IBOC Band, designed by Artistic Director João MacDowell as a living lab,  fosters opportunities for composers such as Hugo Sanbone to curate and re-interpret Afro-Brazilian songs and beats. Sanbone will lead the band and the company’s principal opera singers towards developing his new dramatic work: Yemanjá – the opera will be developed with the support of this artistic body in the next years. 

The project is part of IBOC’s career development program, which has been promoting diversity in the world of opera since 2008. These concerts provide a community experience while creating collaboration opportunities between IBOC’s composers and New York’s world-class musicians. 

The event celebrates the official partnership between IBOC and Music:Not Impossible, leveraging haptic vests to make music accessible to the deaf and hard of hearing. Intermedia artist Daniel Belquer, responsible for the technology behind the haptic vests,  will be present with a limited number of vests and educate the public on the new technology. 

Yemanjá is the African goddess of the sea, rejuvenation, and healing. The International Brazilian Opera Company invites the public to dress in white and be part of this celebration of a new cycle in the city’s artistic rebirth post-Covid. 

NYC Washington Square, Garibaldi Plaza. Friday, September 3rd, 2021. 4pm-6pm

IBOC is a 501 (c ) 3 organization based in Harlem, New York, to develop a new operatic repertoire and foster collaboration between Brazilian and International Artists. Please visit for more information. #ibrazilianopera

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