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"A Felicidade" (Happiness) is a bossa nova song by Antônio Carlos Jobim, with lyrics by Vinícius de Moraes, composed in 1958 for the French film Orfeu Negro (Black Orpheus).[1]

Jobim and Vinícius collaborated on several songs for the 1956 stage play, Orfeu da Conceição, but French producer Sacha Gordine wanted new material for the film version. According to author Ruy Castro, "The duo wrote three songs, mostly over the telephone, given that Vinicíus was now working for the Itamaraty in Montevideo: 'A felicidade,' 'Frevo,' and 'O nosso amor.'" Agostinho dos Santos sings "A Felicidade" during the opening credits of the movie, accompanied by Roberto Menescal on guitar.[1]

The film won the Palme d'Or at the 1959 Cannes Film Festival and the 1960 Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film,[2] bringing worldwide attention to Jobim, Moraes, and the bossa nova movement.

A French version of the song, with lyrics by André Salvet, is known as "Adieu tristesse," and an Italian version, with lyrics by Mario Panzeri, is entitled "Felicità."[3]

Recorded versionsEdit


  1. ^ a b Castro, Ruy (2000). Bossa nova: the story of the Brazilian music that seduced the world. Chicago: A Cappella Books. ISBN 9781556524097. 
  2. ^ "Black Orpheus". IMDB. 1959. Retrieved 9 May 2017. 
  3. ^ "Adaptations of A Felicidade". SecondHandSongs. Retrieved 9 May 2017.