Teresinha Landeiro: Carrying the Future


Photography: Tomás Monteiro
Styling: Mónica Lafayette

Hair: Eric Ribeiro
Make Up: Elodie Fiuza
Production: Snowberry
Talent: Teresinha Landeiro

Total look: Luís Carvalho / Shoes: Sofia Costa

Teresinha Landeiro is young fado singer who’s making waves in the Lisbon urban scene as she’s not only a resident singer in one of the most renowned Casa de Fados but also she brings a new approach to the genre. Her voice is a rare fit for what we usually listen to in Fado, but once she starts performing we are almost forced to admit that Fado doesn’t have to be under the wing of a specific tone or style, it can go a lot of ways depending on who’s singing it.
Spoiler alert: the last time I saw her performing live I had some tears streaming down my face.

Her first memory regarding singing Fado traces back to when she was 11 years old. However she was already 12 when her parents took her to a Casa de Fados (a type of very typical restaurants where fado singers perform). She was not raised in a household on which people would listen to fado so we can define her calling as natural as it can be, almost like love at first listen. Because of that natural bond she created, away from more conservative ways, she enjoyed singing Fado with a particular lightness. ‘What is a Fado singer?’ was not a question she had in mind when she first started singing. She got acquainted with the depth of layers Fado carries as she grew up and developed her musical skills. As she states, ‘I started to become a Fado singer when I got acquainted with those aspects of the craft’.
After noticing that she was naturally drawn to Fado, her mother decided to take her to a Casa de Fados on one of her birthdays. Until then she only listened to records and was not familiar with the habit of listening to fados in such an environment as typical as this was. She went the place where Ana Moura sang and, after listening to her records for so long, she finally saw her performing live on such an intimate space.
One thing on instantly notices when she performs is that she has a specific fresh approach to performing and singing Fado. According to her, it doesn’t have to always be something heavy, sad and dramatic. It all starts with the words; once you know what you are singing about you need to make justice to the intention behind the words. That’s where everything begins to her: the power each word carries on itself. They way you say every word, how you phrase them, how you sing them, if you choose to burst your voice out or to soften it… all revolves around the words. Portuguese, as she says, is such a rich language that she always performs under the commitment of knowing exactly what she’s singing about. For that, one must commit to it until the last note or chord of the song. Camané is the first name that comes to her mind when asked about that one person that does this to the best of his abilities.
You fail if you let your ego come between you and the song and, by that, you get served from it rather than serving the song yourself.

Music became a hobby she took pleasure of in her free time. She was ‘supposed’ to get a medical degree after graduating from high school but she was invited to do a solo concert at the age of 18. With no records out yet.
Life kind of unfolded itself and what then was a hobby was staring to become a more serious thing. She then got tired of college (she was studying something else trying each and every year to get in medical school) and then naturally decided to become a professional singer.
On the day she decided this she cried a lot. Embracing the uncertainty of an artistic career can be quite daunting especially when you like to have things under control. ‘I was getting into a space on which you need to have the approval of other people in order to thrive.’

Things came together naturally and progressively she was getting more recognition. Time made everything come together and, even before putting out her debut album, she got signed with Sony.

Even though she acknowledges how intimate her work is (and should be) she’s not unaware of the industry works and states that tools like instagram are crucial nowadays. During the pandemic she started a ‘web-series’ on which she asked other artists to give her random words to create lyrics revolving them. Even though she’s not totally fond of that game, she manages to find her way through it and take advantage of it.

Her first memory of sounding good goes way back because she was always singing. One day an aunt of hers who was also a singer told her parents that she was singing on pitch to a Cerelac comercial. After that she kept on singing in school gatherings and even got her friends mad because she was always ‘singing louder than the others’ on recordings. However, she – as many other singers – doesn’t stand listening to her own songs nowadays.
As for her body of work she looks in hindsight and sees how more mature she is now and how that reflects in her work: from rooting her songs in Fado, she then got some influences from jazz and brazilian music as she started to attend jam sessions and let herself submerge in that world. But, even when she is taking something from different musical worlds, she’s always a Fado singer.
Fado is something you learn not at a specific institution but rather in the streets, in Casas de Fado, through listening to older and more experienced people. They ‘teach’ you how to perform and sing about life and, according to her, one misses the shot when he or she forgets to conceive the message of the song.
For her, performing on a big stage is much more difficult than doing so in a Casa de Fados because people are further away and you can’t ‘read’ them that well. The distance between the artist and the audience is something you need to overcome during your performance.
When someone tells her that she has moved them while performing and takes the time to tell her that, she feels that it is a gigantic act of kindness. To somehow make something that touches someone or makes them feel understood is such a powerful event. However, she doesn’t romanticize it as for it is, in the end of the day, her job: that’s what she’s being paid for and for many reasons more, that is sort of her mission.

Zeen is a next generation WordPress theme. It’s powerful, beautifully designed and comes with everything you need to engage your visitors and increase conversions.

Top 3 Stories