Brazil: Venezuela’s Oil Financed Rio’s Carnaval Champ

The Vila Isabel samba group, backed by Venezuelan oil money, was declared Carnaval champion Wednesday for its parade calling for unity among the people of Latin America.

Vila Isabel’s victory ended the reign of the Beija Flor group, which had won the last three Carnavals in a row and was a strong contender to repeat the feat this year.

The victory was just the second for Vila Isabel, which also won in 1988.

"Thank God, Vila Isabel presented a beautiful spectacle and the public responded," said Wilson Vieira Alves, the group’s president.

The group’s parade, entitled "I’m Mad About You America," was sponsored largely by the Venezuelan government oil company Petroleos de Venezuela SA, or PDVSA, which led to rumors that Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez would attend the celebrations.

In the end, Chavez did not attend the parade, but the samba was the favorite with the judges.

Rio’s samba parade is a hard-fought competition among the city’s 14 top-tier samba groups, which present 80-minute parades featuring thousands of costumed dancers, drummers and singers. The parades can cost some US$ 2 million each.

Victory at the competition is an honor that brings a trophy and the possibility of lucrative sponsorships, but no cash.

A panel of 40 judges examines everything from the music and lyrics to how much enthusiasm the group generates among the 70,000 spectators and how evenly the paraders flow through the 700-meter (half-mile) Sambadrome stadium.

The loss of even a tenth of a point can doom a group’s chances of winning, so fans were holding their breath until the final scoring was announced.

The samba groups Rocinha and Caprichosos came in last and will be relegated to the second division next year. Only the champion of the second division will move up, reducing the number of samba groups in next year’s parade to 13.

The Independent League of Samba Schools, which organizes the parade, will reduce that number to 12 in 2008 to shorten the length of the two-night parade. This year, the final schools finished parading shortly before 8:00 a.m.

The top six schools will strut their stuff again Saturday night, March 4, at the Champions’ parade, the Carnaval’s climax.

Pravda – www.pravda.ru

Tags:

  • Show Comments (0)

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

comment *

  • name *

  • email *

  • website *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Ads

You May Also Like

Brazil’s Nilson Matta: The Master of Lower Tones

After having interviewed Romero Lubambo and Duduka Da Fonseca in this series, it was ...

Brazilian Refrigeration Industry Warms Up to Foreign Market

The Brazilian refrigeration, air conditioning, ventilation and heating industry wants to expand its exports. ...

Brazil Sugarcane Industry Calls for an End to Ethanol Tariffs Worldwide

For the Brazilian sugarcane industry it doesn’t make any sense for countries to adopt ...

RAPIDINHAS

There is a sad note about both works reviewed. The artists in them are ...

Brazil participates in Dubai's Gulfood fair

Brazil’s Beef, Poultry and Fruit Present at Dubai’s Gulfood Fair

One of the greatest food industries in Brazil, Avipal group, is going to participate ...

Beware! Email Coming from Brazil Promising Goodies on Ronaldo Is Malware

A new malicious threat circulating in the Internet masquerades as a video file relating ...

Brazil Has More Lebanese than Lebanon

Lebanese immigration to Brazil began officially in around 1880, four years after the visit ...

In France, This Whole Year, Brazil Is the Word

In 1985 France began a series of Cultural Seasons (“Saisons Culturelles”) which honored foreign ...

4% or 146,000 Workers in Brazil’s Mines Are Children

The World Day Against Child Labor, instituted in 2002 upon an initiative of the ...

Portuguese Minister Denies Brazil’s Adman Tried to Pass as Presidential Advisor

The ex-minister of Public Works of Portugal, Antonio Mexia, now denies that Brazilian adman ...