Artists

OMIRI

Portugal

Omiri is one of the most unique projects in reinventing traditional Portuguese music. To reinvent tradition, nothing better to bring to the show itself the true stakeholders of our culture: musicians and sounds from all around Portugal playing and singing as if they were part of the same universe. Not in flesh and bone but in sound and image, serving as a basis for Vasco Ribeiro Casais musical composition and improvisation.

Omiri also proposes a ball where all the tunes played are danceable, according to the rhythm and balance of Portuguese traditional dances and not only (Repasseados, Drum’n’bass, Malhoes, Viras, Break Beat, Corridinhos...).

Omiri is, above all, remix, the culture of the XXI century, mixing in one show already forgotten musical practices, making them permeable and accessible to the culture of our day, synchronizing shapes and songs of Portugal rural tradition and the language of urban culture. In Omiri Portuguese music and culture are rich and enjoy themselves.

Omiri´s mastermind, Vasco Ribeiro Casais, decided to become a musician at the age of 15, the energy flow felt amidst hardcore music fans and bands shaped his path forever. The desire to live by and for the music, sharing it with as many people as possible, searching for the ultimate gig, the perfect state of communion and oneness between Artist and public, took center stage in his life. It was later on, during Lisbon´s festive season that he got in touch with folk, ethnic or as it is broadly stipulated today, world music. Besides electric instruments Vasco started to explore traditional instruments alongside an intensive study of classical guitar, shaping his multiinstrumentalist character as we know him today, playing different stringed instruments as guitars, bouzoukis, nickel-harps, cavaquinho (the little guitar that portuguese sailors took to Hawaii which became known there as Ukulele), alongside different sorts of bagpipes, percussions and later on, electronic music composition and programming, video mixing and editing.

After several years exploring diverse european cultural and musical languages as well as instruments, Vasco felt the necessity to look “inside” into portuguese culture and traditional instruments adding a broader approach fusing it with contemporary influences, rhythms and electronics thus giving birth to OMIRI. Later on Tiago Pereira, joins the project, and his work travelling all around the country documenting real portuguese culture and music, sealing in film the oral testimony of the old and the new, key figures to unveil the culture and music of the rural and authentic portugal beyond pop culture and mass media standardization, rooted in its ancient beliefs and cults, thru the work songs passed thru generations in agricultural fields or thru youngsters who got caught by the magical properties of ancient instruments, gives OMIRI a unique dimension showcasing the history of portuguese culture and music but also its socio- anthropological richness, to be experienced live in concert, linking generations in a way we would thought unconceivable.

OMIRI is recognized as one of the most interesting acts to rise from the new folk generation artists in Portugal, leading the way in combining traditional songs and culture backed by modern electronic rhythms and landscapes.

As a sign of that recognition, OMIRI has been invited by the Estonian Traditional Music Centre to participate on their programme, also Maestro Osvaldo Ferreira invited Vasco Ribeiro Casais to create a show of OMIRI together with Orquestra do Algarve and in 2014 was nominated for the Prémio Megafone (Megafone Award), that is presented by the Associaçao Megafone, a cultural association and the SPA - Sociedade Portuguesa de Autores, which is the Portuguese Collecting Rights Society. Other highlights include a series of four concerts commissioned by MUDE - Museu do Design e da Moda (Museum for fashion and design) and a series of concerts organized by the Museu do Douro (Museum responsible for the zone of the Douro River in Portugal home of Porto Wine and beautiful landscapes, granted World Heritage Site status by UNESCO). 

Vasco´s dedication is translated today in what OMIRI has become… A full package audiovisual experience. You decide if you just want to listen, tap your foot in an oldfashioned roots style or be carried away and step into the dancefloor, stomping and having fun as if this was the performance you've been missing for so long.

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