Main content
This programme is not currently available on BBC iPlayer

The Girl from Ipanema: Brazil, Bossa Nova and the Beach

Katie Derham travels to Rio de Janeiro to explore the story behind Brazil's most famous and enduring song, which defines the moment Brazil charmed the world stage in the 1960s.

Documentary in which Katie Derham travels to Rio de Janeiro (where her father was born) to explore the story behind Brazil's most famous and enduring song. Written in 1962 by Antonio Carlos Jobim with lyrics by Vinicius de Moraes, with a later English translation by Norman Gimbel, The Girl from Ipanema defines the moment Brazil charmed the world stage with a laidback song about a haunting woman.

It's a vibrant musical journey to the stunning beaches, majestic mountains and buzzy clubs of Rio, where Katie meets key musicians and architects of bossa nova (including Carlos Lyra, Roberto Menescal, Joyce, Daniel Jobim and Marcos Valle), witnesses intimate musical performances, and uncovers the genesis and story behind Brazil's most successful musical export.

The Girl from Ipanema is quintessential bossa nova and tracing its roots reveals the fascinating story of this unique musical style. Invented by a gang of young bohemians in Rio in the late 50s, bossa grew into a 60s phenomenon, especially in the US where it became a youth craze and later a significant part of the modern jazz repertoire. The Girl from Ipanema as sung by Astrud Gilberto with sax from Stan Getz went top five in the US and became a major international hit in 1964.

Nothing sums up Rio as well as the simple and seductive lyrics to The Girl From Ipanema and, as the eyes of the world look to Rio once more this summer, what better way to get to understand the city, its people and its mid-60s zeitgeist than through its most famous song?

59 minutes

Last on

Sun 15 Jul 2018 01:30

Music Played

Add music you love and enjoy it with My Tracks

Timings (where shown) are from the start of the programme in hours and minutes

Credits

Role Contributor
Presenter Katie Derham
Producer Andy Dunn
Director Andy Dunn
Executive Producer Mark Cooper

Broadcasts

Featured in...