current project

strongly rooted in the brazilian singing/songwriting tradition, mariá mixes songwriting and improvisation on her first full-authorial project, which she will continue to develop as the improviser in residence #13 in moers, germany, in 2020, with a record that will be released at the end of the year.


mariá invites an ever-changing ensemble that could vary from a trio to a septet, usually inviting musicians from the same location which she will perform. her song compositions are used as a raw material for free improvisation in a multi-colored concert that is never the same, going from extreme lyricism to abstract noise and deeply dependent on each of the invited improvisers.


with this work, mariá tries to artistically speak about the concepts of authorality, originality, composition, experimental and popular music, which are charged with deep social and political meanings and are often used as a power apparatus.

other limits


"other limits", music for three instruments and electronica, is a soundtrack composed by mariá portugal for the classic silent film "limite" (1931), by mario peixoto. the piece was premiered at mis-sp (são paulo museum of image and sound) in 2017.

mario peixoto used to say that "limite" was about the illusory character of time. through image, he wanted to prove time does not exist. on the other hand, but not by chance, the film explores human limitations in relation to time - which inexorably passes - and to nature - which remains, relentless.

in "other limits", mariá seeks to bring mario's thoughts about time and limits to musical composition and improvisation. from this premise, she seeks to build a musical narrative in counterpoint to the original classic soundtrack, using both electronic music, song composition and mainly improvised music.

in a predominantly open manner, the music is performed by the composer herself (drums, electronics, voice) and by two other invited improvisers with different melodic or harmonic instruments. the soundtrack explores the limits (as borders or zone of contact) between electronic and acoustic, composed and improvised music.

video: filipe franco and josé tm @ MIS-SP, 2017


a web radio program curated by mariá and jamille pinheiro dias, literature researcher and translator. livrofonia puts together conversations about sound, listening, and music within the realm of literature. an initiative linked to "sense and sound" project at Stanford University (California, USA) and grupo de estudos da escuta (cnpq), livrofonia invites authors, musicians, actors and researchers to speak about sound and literary writing.

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