#LoveInspiration: Carnival Parade in Rio

On a lovely Saturday and following the Rio dream we are delighted to get you inspired by

Carnival Parade in Rio de Janeiro

The highlight of Rio Carnival is undoubtedly the Rio Carnival Parade called the Samba Parade or Samba Schools Parade, a totally unique event in the world!

The Rio Samba Parade is the review of a fierce competition between the Rio samba schools. The judges and spectators watch the principal parades in the Sambodromo, which was specially built for this event.

The Samba Parade in Rio de Janeiro is something everybody should experience at least once in their lives. The event is broadcast live to several countries. Watching on TV is comfortable but not any close to the fun that is being there. Definitely, mingle with the crowds and watch the Brazilians and Cariocas (the people of Rio). For the best and full blown experience, you can even march with a samba school.

The Rio Samba Parade is very distinct from all other street parades held at some other places in the world. It started as street festivities with groups of people parading through the streets playing music and dancing. The Carnival parades in Rio developed into something special, a competition between the samba schools. The main competition was originally held downtown. Until the mid-80s, bleachers for the spectators were simply assembled and disassembled every year on Av. Presidente Vargas, one of Rio’s major arteries. Then the main parades were moved to the Sambodromo, specially built for this event.

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The preparation for the Samba Parade starts months in advance, as each samba school mobilizes thousands of supporters who will create the various parts of the school’s display.

The Beija-Flor samba school parades during the Rio de Janeiro's Carnival
The Beija-Flor samba school parades during the Rio de Janeiro’s Carnival February 17, 2015. The Carnival’s jury named the group champion on Wednesday.

First, the theme of the year is chosen. Then the school’s samba song of the year is selected through competition, while the school’s Carnival Designer creates the costumes and the floats. When ready, the sketches move into production. By December the rehearsals begin. In time for Christmas, the schools’ annual samba songs are recorded and released to the record shops.

Every school’s parade is highly organized and designed. They line up in a unique way to present their pageant. The schools are divided into a number of sections and each section has a number of wings of about 100 people wearing the same costume. Sometimes even 2 wings (approx. 200 people) have the same costume. You will find more details about the role and name of some special sections of the Parade on the other side of this page.

In between the wings, there are about 8 Carnival floats, separating the sections and illustrating the school’s theme. Most of them are pushed along by men from the School’s community but some are motorized and have mechanical parts. The floats carry special guests along with some young and mesmerizing samba dancers in very elaborate, awe-inspiring costume creations.

LoveStoryPeople thinks of the whole event as a tropical opera or rather like several operas happening on one night. It is beautiful to watch and the experience for the paraders themselves is so intense that the memories last a lifetime.

Share your story with us using today’s hashtag #LoveInspiration.

 

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