As soon as I hear Rio I certainly don’t think football, I think Carnival! I’m not alone either as it’s known the world over as the number one festival, with samba music, floats, revellers and plenty of famously fabulous outfits. It kicks off every year in the week before lent and draws millions of people from across the globe, all looking to experience a street party like no other.
It also holds a special place in history, with the first ever carnival held back in 1723 when the main premise was to essentially have a massive water fight. The main event of the modern carnival has always been for the samba schools in the area to compete in the famous Samba Parade, although the skimpy costumes and liberal use of glitter have also becomes part the attraction. Come the big night, each school must showcase their samba skills, self-made floats and famously bright costumes. Each team can have thousands of members, making for some spectacular sights and creations.
Competition is fierce and schools can start prepping months in advance to help them secure the top spot on the night. All this effort produces some pretty spectacular outfits and floats too and these guys seriously know how to pull of a showstopping look! 2014 was no exception and despite an array of awesome acts, Unidos da Tijuca were the clear winners – with the signature barely-there ensembles, plenty of energy and a very cool ‘speed’ theme honouring the Brazilian Formula 1 legend, Ayrton Senna.
Around this competition plenty of parties, events and festivals have all sprung up to make the Rio Carnival into the spectacular show that everyone wants to be a part of. Stretching across the whole of Rio, including parties in Copacabana, Ipenema and Flamengo, the whole city comes down with a serious case of carnival fever.
It may not be the right time of year, but I wonder if the England boys will be taking some style tips from the fabulous festival goers below? Somehow I doubt it!
P.s I also blog about my life as an Honorary Scouse, have a spy!
Images courtesy of:
www.riocarnival.net, www.smh.com.au, www.riocarnivalguide.com