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Island of Boa Vista Art & Culture

Hélder Paz Monteiro, César Schofield Cardoso, Paulo Cabral, are some of the artists who have distinguished themselves in the area of photography. Sarne progress has been made in the area of cinema in Cape Verde.
The striking piece by Leao Lopes, llheu de Contenada based on the novel of the same name by Terxerra de Sousa was filmed on the island of Fogo in 1964. More recently, Francisco Manso filmed two full length feature films on Cape Verde: O testamento do Sr. Napomuceno, based on the novel by Germano Almeida and A Ilha dos Escravos.
Marked characteristics of the Creole identity are also seen in tapestries, particulary in S. Vicente, from the hand of artists such as Bela Duarte and Manuel Figueira.
After the language, music is the richest and most universal manifestation of the culture of Cape Verde. The people of Cape Verde have founded a new nation from dozens of original cultures, and sculpted original models for musical culture, in which joy and sorrow meetings and separations, land and sea, hunger and abundance, solitude and celebration, nostalgic longing, love, life and death are transformed and crafted into mournful songs, soulful murmurs, or melodies of hope, shouts of joy and even music for celebrations.
Realisticlly, the origin of the word that gave name to the most universal and idiosyncratic musical genre in Cape Verde is unknown. It has been ascribed to the English language (to mourn), to the French (morne), and also to an origin from Martinique (where the word means town). The academic, Vasca Martins, believes it comes from Alentejo and has a more natural meaning, following the normal sense of the word in Portuguese (in the sense of calm, slow), as occurs with almost all the terminology in Creole. Wherever the term came from, morna is now universally known, and audiences in many countries of the world have seen shows by Ceséria Evora, Tito Paris and other icons of Cape Verdean music, and are able to hum along to the simple, but moving melody of ”sodade, sodade...".
The tenderness expressed by morna is all the more moving with the knowledge of the bitterness of the islands of the Harmattan, but perhaps this is not the case if we consider the human capacity to overcome material dificulties through a strong spirit. In fact, Cape Verdean music and particularly the morna are a real comfort and cure for the rigours of life for those "beaten by the wind” as Manuel Lopes described them.
Generated on the island of Boavista from the landum, by transforming it from a two-beat to a four-beat rhythm and progressively introducing minor keys, the morna adapted a great range af themes, putting them into a slower rhythm than previously. 
Some students of Cape Verdean music believe that this musical genre is particularly old and representative of the secret feelings of the people, but the oldest memories of the funana go back to the bathu gaita (baile de gaito - concertina ball) form, in which various genres such as samba, waltz or mazurca were accompanied by the concertina (known as the “gaita”), in island areas of Santiago, although unfortunately no recording remains.
As with the musical genres described above, in Cape Verde people dance in the different styles of morna, coladeira and funanà, the three dances that are common to all Cape Verdeans, even in the diaspora. However there are also other forms of dance that are usually prized and practiced although these are sometimes more localised such as the batuco, which is mainly rooted in Santiago, the colé, which is mostly seen in Boavista, in S. Vicente and in Santo Antao or the talaia-baxo, the canlzade or the rabolo, in Eogd as well as the landum, in Boavista, the xotice or the European contradanga, mazurka and polka. Various dance groups have appeared notably Ralz di Polén, whose choreographies have made an impact not only in Cape Verde, but also on the international stage.


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