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THE FILM

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Dom Salvador & Abolição is a documentary about jazz pianist and composer Dom Salvador, who have been playing for 42 years at The River Café in Brooklyn. One of the architects of Bossa Nova in Brazil and a busy studio session musician and arranger, during the 60’s, Salvador played with the country's best. The man who is credited to be the pioneer of many musical styles, a name in more than a thousand records and the leader of the seminal band Abolition. After recording only one album, Salvador abandons a promising and successful journey with the band to pursue his passion for jazz, moving to New York in the early 70’s.

Salvador is also a case study in artistry that's nearly incompatible with mainstream success, adored and treasured by fellow musicians and critics, Salvador carved a sweet spot for a working musician at the fancy restaurant. A job that both fueled his ability to compose and distribute on his own terms but has also fermented a hermetically closed artist, that has yet to harmonize commercial insertion and artistic output.

 

Members of the band talk about the collaborative process orchestrated by Salvador, why they ended so abruptly and its unlived greatness. Under the racial and creative persecution installed by the military government, Salvador saw a way out into the US, immigrating with his family and setting home in a predominantly white neighborhood of Long Island.

 

While his lifelong partner, the singer Maria has been suffering from dementia for more than 14 years, the film keeps up with the busy life of the relentless artist. A self promoted concert at the prestigious Carnegie Hall is filled with anticipation, wait and errors. A live show album that shows best the freedom and the pains of the unrestrained maestro.

 

His unconditional commitment to music creates tension between family and other artists. Interviews with Belafonte, Dick Oatts, Ed Motta, family and friends cast a light on our headstrong character.

 

The film examines the fragility of the man who's always in control, it demands that we engage with Salvador the person and Salvador the musician to try to understand the construction of a truly independent soul.