Superstar singer Anitta brought Rio to Las Vegas at Billboard’s inaugural MusicCon on Friday (May 13) in Area 15, ahead of her performance at the event.
The Brazilian icon’s energy was on display during her conversation with Billboard Latin Senior Writer Griselda Flores, who penned Anitta’s recent cover story, as she discussed her groundbreaking performance at Coachella, plans for retirement, her doubts about her team on “Wrapping” and much more.
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Here are five takeaways from Anitta’s “Brazil to the World” panel at MusicCon.
She was “not amused at all” during her first-week Coachella performance.
“The first week I couldn’t enjoy anything, I just wanted it to be amazing and exactly how I wanted it,” Anitta explained. “I just wanted to make sure everything went perfect. You want your country to feel like it was well represented.” The Rio-raised singer described the pressures on her to make her Coachella set run smoothly, especially as the first Brazilian solo artist to grace the Coachella stage. After the debut performance, Anitta did not party. Instead, she returned to her hotel right away to watch her performance over and over again, saying that she was excited to jump on the couch, thanks to how well she did. By the second week, Anitta’s nerves dissipated. “I was having so much fun and I was so drunk,” she laughed.
Speaking of firsts, Anitta also talked about some Billboard milestones.
“Everyone in Brazil said it felt like the World Cup to them,” Anitta explained about her first Coachella and Billboard spread, as the first Brazilian to appear on the cover. “It is the first time of so many things for Brazilians that I am now able to do with my work. Everything that happens, my country goes crazy.” She also highlighted her explosive single “Envolver”, which reached No. 1 on Billboard’s Global Excl. United States and on Spotify’s global chart, making Anitta the first Brazilian artist to achieve both feats.
His brother Renan became his co-manager for protection.
Initially, Renan was skeptical of Anitta’s big dreams of being an international star. “He was looking at me, like, ‘We’re so poor, we live in the middle of nowhere, what do you mean?’ He was afraid that if he didn’t help me, he would find someone else,” Anitta said. “[What if] Was this someone else a bad person? It helped me just to protect myself and it worked amazingly.” At the time, Anitta was studying business and Renan was working with computers. The iconic singer managed her own career for a decade before her brother officially took over the role for her. “She was reading all the contracts, closing all the deals, everything besides being an artist,” she said. “There was a point where I looked at him and said, ‘Okay, now you’re ready. [Help me] before my mind goes crazy and I break.’” Once Renan intervened, Anitta finally let go. “I used to be the mom to him and now he’s the dad,” she said. “I didn’t used to go out and have some time for myself, the first time I had a drink in my life I was 23 years old. He was there taking care of me, holding my hair.”
In five years, she plans to be retired and in the “middle of nowhere”
When asked what she sees for herself in five years, Anitta plans to go back to basics. “I want to retire with kids on a farm in the middle of nowhere after saving my country from this terrible government,” she said. “It’s sad that we have to get to the point where we have to do everything to realize that it means nothing. I don’t have a car, yachts, private jets, I am a simple person. I don’t even know how much money I have.” When it comes to future parenthood, Anitta intends to make her children earn her money, the same way she did. “People ask about my children, I say that I worked to have my money, they can also work to have theirs!”
The launch of “Envolver” was thanks to a dream
When Anitta was preparing to launch Wrap, her team was reluctant. According to the chart-topping artist, those around her thought the track needed a male characteristic to be successful, but no one bit her. Then she dreamed that the song would be number 1. “I had this dream, then I told her [my manager] I don’t care.” Her hunch was correct, “Envolver” reached number 1 on the Brazilian songs chart. Anitta chose not to share details of the dream, to avoid “scare” anyone, but “now every decision I make makes me they ask, ‘Did you dream of something?’”