Born to a family of migrant farm workers, the three sisters spent their childhood bouncing from city to city in the Northeast of Brazil., following the steps of their alcoholic father in search of temporary work. In order to supplement their meager earnings, their mother dedicated herself to making arts and crafts, while the sisters learned to sing for change in street markets and on church steps.

After the death of their father, singing became the main source of income for the large family, which seemed to never stop growing. At one time, the sisters were supporting 14 people, among them brothers and sisters, one of whom was adopted, as well as nieces, nephews, their mother and her new husband.

Maria Barbosa, the most independent and self-sufficient of the three, is the only one to have been married. In fact, she has been married twice, both to visually impaired husbands and twice widowed. Her first husband, Manuel Traquiline, a guitar player and singer, met her when she was singing in a street fair. Together they had a daughter, Maria Dalva, who was born in 1989. After her birth, Maria moved with husband to the city of Natal, in the North of the country. This was the only time that the sisters were seperated. At the time their her daughter turned five years old, Manuel died and Maria returned to live again with her sisters in Campina Grande. There she met the love of her life, Silvestre, with whom she was with for two years before he was violently stabbed to death.

When the crew from TV ZERO first met the three blind sisters 1997, they were practically alone, living in small house in the Northeastern Brazilian city of Campina Grande. Their mother had passed away some six months earlier and Silvestre had been dead for almost four years. Maria’s daughter was in the custody of distant aunts who refused to give her back to her mother.

What occurred in their lives is the subject of this film.

 

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