Music benefit to be held for Brazil flood victims

Petersham resident Ricardo Frota will host  a night of live music to benefit victims of recent flooding in southern Brazil, which he is a native of.

Petersham resident Ricardo Frota will host a night of live music to benefit victims of recent flooding in southern Brazil, which he is a native of. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO


Published: 06-11-2024 3:40 PM

Modified: 06-13-2024 3:40 PM

PETERSHAM – Ricardo Frota, a resident of Petersham and native of southern Brazil, whose home village of Porto-Alegre has been inundated with high flood waters, has arranged a night of live music to help his home.

Frota, an internationally-known Brazilian musician and rain forest activist, has stepped up to help his local Brazilian community by offering a fundraiser for southern Brazil flood victims on Saturday, June 22, at 5 p.m. on the Petersham Common. Frota, a violinist/percussionist trained at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, will bring his array of instruments and sound objects to the benefit. He is best known for playing an eight-foot high tree like a drum and mimicking the sounds of the Brazilian rainforest.

In early April, days of torrential rains brought raging waters and mudslides to southern Brazil, flooding 342 towns and villages, leaving thousands of homes and businesses destroyed.

“My hometown has been hit with nearly eight feet of flood water, including my family’s home where I grew up,” said Frota.

Ricardo will be joined by local musicians, storytellers and environmental activists, including French guitarist Maurice Cahen, singer/songwriter Greta Bro, and singer Kaja Esser. The event will be emceed by local storyteller and performer Brother NorthStar, Medicine Walker, who has spent over 25 years walking on global pilgrimages to bring attention to social and environmental injustices. The program is sponsored by the local nonprofit University of the Wild. Dr. Larry Buell, founder and director of the university, lives in community with Ricardo Frota and witnesses the effect the Brazilian floods have on his family and community.

“When we can see and feel the effects of climate change in our own family and friends, be they wildfires, hurricanes, or floods we must act in support and solidarity so that resilience and action can come about,” Buell said.

While the intention of the June 22 benefit event is to raise funds to be sent to Ricardo’s local community, it is also a time for residents to learn more about the Brazilian rainforests. Donations though a 501(c)(3) educational nonprofit may be sent to UofWild, 73 Glasheen Road, Petersham, MA 01366, or made online at through its ‘donate’ button. For information contact Ricardo Frota at or 978-353-9185 or visit and Buell can be reached at or 978-855-1420.

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