Sunday, April 5, 2009

Daniela Mercury, another famous Salvadorean

Daniela Mercuri de Almeida Póvoas better known as Daniela Mercury (born on July 28, 1965 in Salvador) is a Latin Grammy Award-winning Brazilian axé, samba-reggae and MPB singer, songwriter and record producer. Since her breakthrough, Mercury has become one of the best known Brazilian female singers, selling over 8 million albums in her home country and almost 12 million albums worldwide. She is also the Brazilian female performer with most #1 hits in the country, 14 to be exact.

Her mother is Liliana Mercuri, a social worker of Italian ancestry, and her father is Antônio Fernando de Abreu Ferreira de Almeida, a Portuguese industrial mechanic. Mercury spent her childhood in a house in the Brotas neighborhood with her four siblings: Tom, Cristiana, Vânia (who would also become a singer) and Marcos.

When Mercury was eight years old, she began dance lessons (classic ballet, African dances and jazz). At thirteen, she decided to become a singer (apparently influenced by the work of Elis Regina), and at sixteen, she started to sing in trio elétricos. Two years later, she entered the Federal University of Bahia's School of Dance.

Mercury married electronic engineer Zalther Portela Laborda Póvoas in 1984, when she was nineteen years old. One year later, in September 3, 1985, Mercury gave birth to her first child, Gabriel (who would also become a singer and songwriter). One year later, she gave birth to a girl named Giovanna. In 1996, Mercury and Póvoas divorced.

Daniela Mercury has recently been performing at an open air free concert in the United States on Hollywood Beach, FL. She is the headline act for 'Brazil on the Beach'. Organizers expected crowds in excess of 50,000.

In July 13, 2007, Daniela Mercury closed the opening ceremony of the XV Pan American Games singing a medley of André Filho's "Cidade Maravilhosa" and Ary Barroso's "Aquarela do Brasil".

Mercury has performed at a large number of charitable events. She is the second Brazilian honored as an ambassador for UNICEF (Renato Aragão was the first). She is also an ambassador for UNAIDS and UNESCO. She has performed at Rede Globo's annual charity Criança Esperança for fifteen consecutive years (1992-2007). She also represents various non-profit organizations including Caravana da Musica which has spawned her own Instituto Sol da Liberdade.

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