In full jump

Fernando Barba (flute) in front of the group Barbatuques at Sesc Pinheiros, São Paulo, in 2006

Fernando Barba (flute) in front of the group Barbatuques at Sesc Pinheiros, São Paulo, in 2006

  |  ISTOÉ

Fernando Barba tells how he converted bodies into instruments, founded the Barbatuques group and defeated a brain tumor.

Few artists are able to invent a language, a model and a universe of forms. São Paulo musician Fernando Barba, 48, is one of them. To tell how he created a world of sounds, he wrote the book "A Vida começava lá - uma história de repercussão corporal" ("Life started there - a story of bodily repercussion"), (Stacchini Editorial). He had Renata Ferraz Torres' help, his sister, to narrate the achievements, the travels and the fight against health difficulties. Since adolescence he has codified body music, which comprises a method, a vocabulary of sounds and a collection of 60 compositions. "I divide my art into chest, crack and palm," he tells ISTOÉ.

"With them, anyone can practice music without having a conventional instrument." As leader of the band Barbatuques, his "levada," as he says, magnetized followers, trained teachers and charmed the planet. In 2017, Barba was diagnosed with a cerebellar tumor. The surgery was successful, but limited movement and speech. He has not faded: he participates in Barbatuques, coordinates workshops, conducts shows and writes nonstop. A friend told him that a new Barba arises: he is jumping from hill to hill, but still in the air. The arrival is what everyone expects, because it will bring another innovative language.

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