October 5, 2022
The beginning of Elza Soares' career

Elza Soares was considered, in 1999, by BBC London Radio, as the Voice of the Millennium. The Brazilian singer debunked names like Aretha Franklin and even King Michael Jackson. She left us on January 20th at the age of 91, but surely her art and her story will live on forever!

Elza’s beginning

Elza began to sing to be able to feed her son. In an Instagram post, the singer shared the story. She had already lost two children because she couldn’t afford to feed them and, again, she didn’t have the money to feed the eldest. It was then that he heard on the radio that Ary Barroso’s program, “Calouros Nota 5”, had the jackpot. Elza decided to take a chance and signed up.

Elza, 1967.

“My oldest son João Carlos was dying. I had already lost two children and I didn’t want to lose another one. I didn’t have the money to take care of him and I heard on the radio that Ary Barroso’s freshman program, Note 5, had the jackpot. I don’t know how, but I knew I was going to get this award!” she wrote.

On the day of the performance, she didn’t have nice clothes and had to borrow them from her mother, who was 60 kg, at the time Elza weighed 32, and stuffed her with pins. When she arrived to introduce herself, the entire audience laughed at the way she was dressed.


“I had no clothes or shoes, I had nothing! So, I took my mother’s clothes, which weighed 60 kg and put them on, but I weighed 32 kg, you see, right? I fixed it with pins. Okay, now it’s fashion, right? Today even Madonna uses it, but I started this fashion, see? Pins in clothes are very mine, it’s Elza’s thing! When they called me, I got up and walked onto the auditorium stage. It was packed and everyone started laughing out loud mocking me,” she recalled.

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Elza then narrated the following dialogue: “Seu Ary called me and asked:
— What did you come here to do?
— I came to sing!
“Tell me something: what planet did you come from?”
— From the same planet as yours, Seu Ary.
“And what is my planet?”

The successful career

After this answer, the singer remembers that the people who laughed at her shut up. “I sang the song ‘Lama’. The Gong did not sound and I won, I took the prize and my son is still alive today, thank God! Since then, I always carry a pin with me. At that time, I thought that if I had food for my children, I wouldn’t be hungry anymore. Time passed and I was still hungry, for culture, dignity, education, equality and much more, I realize that hunger only changes its face, but it has no end. There’s always a void that we can’t fill and maybe that’s the reason for our existence”.


From there, Elza released 34 albums throughout her career, including several hits such as the samba “ Se Acaso Você Chegasse ”, “A Carne” and “Espumas ao Vento”. Until 3 days before her departure, on January 17th and 18th, the artist was recording her new DVD. The singer also left a disc with unreleased songs. Both are scheduled for release in 2022.

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