Manhã de Carnaval

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"Manhã de Carnaval" ("Carnival Morning"), often referred to as "Black Orpheus", is a song by Brazilian composer Luiz Bonfá and lyricist Antônio Maria.

"Manhã de Carnaval" appeared as a principal theme in the 1959 Portuguese-language film Orfeu Negro[1] by French director Marcel Camus. The film's soundtrack also included songs by Antônio Carlos Jobim and Vinícius de Moraes, as well as the composition by Bonfá "Samba de Orfeu". "Manhã de Carnaval" appears in the film, including versions sung or hummed by both the principal characters (Orfeu and Euridice), as well as an instrumental version,[2] so that the song has been described as the main musical theme of the film.[3] In the portion of the film in which the song is sung by the character Orfeu, portrayed by Breno Mello, the song was dubbed by Agostinho dos Santos. The song was initially rejected for inclusion in the film by Camus, but Bonfá was able to convince the director that the music for Manhã de Carnaval was superior to the song Bonfá composed as a replacement.[3] Orfeu Negro was an international success (winning, for example, an Academy Award in 1960),[4] and brought the song to a large audience.

"Manhã de Carnaval" became one of the first Bossa Nova compositions to gain popularity outside Brazil.[3] Particularly in the United States, the song is considered to be one of the most important Brazilian Jazz/Bossa songs that helped establish the Bossa Nova movement in the late 1950s. "Manhã de Carnaval" has become a jazz standard in the U.S., while it is still performed regularly by a wide variety of musicians around the world in its vocalized version or just as an instrumental one. In the U.S., the song is also known as "A Day in the Life of a Fool", "Carnival", "Theme from Black Orpheus", or simply "Black Orpheus". In France, the song is also known as "La Chanson d'Orphée". All versions of foreign texts were written by lyricists other than Antônio Maria, using Bonfá's original music.


All recordings listed below were released under the title of "Manhã de Carnaval" and sung in Portuguese, except where noted.

Lyrics other than Portuguese[edit]

Although not as popular as the vast number of interpretations with Portuguese lyrics,[7] the song can also be found with a few English lyrics adaptations and in some other languages as well. None of the versions in other languages were written by Brazilian songwriters.

  • In 1970 Marisa Sannia in its LP Marisa Sannia canta Sergio Endrigo... e le sue canzoni created an italian version with lyrics by Mario Panzeri.
  • Luis Miguel sang the song in a Spanish version, while Julio Iglesias sang a different Portuguese version in a more Spanish sounding Portuguese, without his distinguished accent. Both versions were titled in Spanish, "Mañana de Carnaval", although their rhythmic interpretations vary greatly.
  • George David Weiss, Hugo Peretti, and Luigi Creatore wrote an English lyric adaptation under the title "Carnival." This version was recorded by Perry Como in 1963, and again, using the original cover name, "Manhã de Carnaval", three years later. Singer-songwriter Tori Amos recorded this version of the song for the Mission: Impossible 2 soundtrack in 2000.[8]
  • Carl Sigman later wrote a different set of English lyrics titled "A Day in the Life of a Fool", again adapting it to Bonfá's original music. Sigman's version is not a translation of the Brazilian lyrics, but rather an all new text on a different topic altogether, but to the same unmodified music.
  • In 2002, the music of Manhã de Carnaval was used in an Arabic version called "Shou Bkhaf" (How I fear) with lyrics written by Ziad Rahbani (Lebanese musician and composer). His mother, the Lebanese diva singer Fairouz, very popular in the Arab world, released this song in her Wala Kif album.
  • Shiina Ringo, lead singer for the Japanese band Tokyo Incidents covered this song in both Portuguese and English under the title "Kuroi Orufe" (黒いオルフェ, Black Orpheus) in her cover album, Utaite Myouri ~Sono Ichi~ (2002) as a solo artist.
  • French: "La Chanson d'Orphée (Matin fait lever le soleil...)" sung by Tino Rossi, Marie José, Dalida, Maria Candido, Gloria Lasso, Sacha Distel, Pauline Croze, Edita Piekha, French Latino.[9]
  • Arabic : " Shu Bkhaf (How I Fear, or I Fear So Much, or I Dread So Much)" sung by Fairuz in Lebanese Arabic in her Wala Kif album released in january 2002. The lyrics were adapted into Lebanese Arabic and the music was reorchestrated by Fairuz son composer, songwriter, arranger, lyricist, playwright, comedian, actor, jazz pianist, musician, newspaper chronicler, Ziad Rahbany.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Black Orpheus at IMDb
  2. ^ Black Orpheus Original Soundtrack (CD). Verve Music. 2008.
  3. ^ a b c Bogdanov, Vladimir; Chris Woodstra; Stephen Thomas Erlewine (2001). All Music Guide: The Definitive Guide to Popular Music. Backbeat Books. p. 911.
  4. ^ "The 32nd Academy Awards (1960) Nominees and Winners". Retrieved 27 October 2011.
  5. ^ Video of Luiz Bonfá with Perry Como performing, "Manhã de Carnaval" Archived 2008-04-16 at the Wayback Machine, live, on the NBC program Kraft Music Hall, 1963.
  6. ^ "Пьеха Эдита - Manha De Carnaval - Listen on Online Radio Box". Retrieved 2021-06-18.
  7. ^ Portuguese lyrics of Manhã de Carnaval,
  8. ^ "Carnival" from Mission: Impossible 2 soundtrack
  9. ^ Manhã de carnaval, retrieved 2022-10-24

External links[edit]