Women in Music

When she visits her home country, Mali, Rokia Traoré finds herself surrounded by expressions of admiration, comparable to the singer’s repeated astonishment at the strength she encounters in the women who work the land with a broad smile on their faces and who never fail to support their families and the community.

Issues related to the women of her country have been a constant in her career, writing about the rejection of the traditional role of women in Malian society and using her songs to call for an increasingly full participation in the life of Mali.

This same idea also pervades the repertoire of the Iranian sisters Mahsa and Marjan Vahdat, the second artists to grace the stage on the topic "Music in the Feminine". Prevented from singing solo in Iran, Mahsa and Marjan have turned abroad to pursue their artistic work. They also make a point of dedicating themselves to the teaching of the beautiful traditional Persian women’s songs, which they want to safeguard from all the political and religious stipulations that could endanger them.

The fado of Aldina Duarte is also often influenced by reflections on the place of women, the expectations of their social role, their beauty, their youth and their dependence. All this is expressed in a fado that is, above all, a fado of liberation.

To complete this thematic cycle, there is a collaboration between violinist Carolin Widmann and conductor Tianyi Lu, and a double bill by pianist Joana Gama, who returns to Gulbenkian Music with a recital dedicated to Federico Mompou, and a concert in which her language intersects with Luis Fernandes' meticulous electronics.