Category: Rio de Janeiro
Posted by: Andre Skowronski
Happy 2012 Everyone! Rio de Janeiro, just broke another record when hosting 2,5 million people at the legendary Copacabana Beach in Rio de Janeiro. Below a HD Video of the Fireworks of the Copacabana Party too. How was the party like? Let us see how this all happened!

Astonished 2.5 million people attended the party which had 30 attractions divided among the four stages from the edge of Leme to Copacabana. Peace, joy and relaxation, beyond the novelty of cinematographic fireworks, marked the arrival of 2012 on Copacabana Beach - the largest outdoor event in the world - and also welcomed foreigners to the UN Rio+20 World Conference which is going to happen in Rio de Janeiro, between the 20th and 22nd of June, to discuss the environmental future of the planet.

About 2.5 million people from Rio de Janeiro, other Brazilian states, added from tourists from the most diverse corners of the world, according to estimates from the Military Police of Rio de Janeiro, were joyfully present at the Copacabana Beach, where about 30 artists performed.



According to the Special Secretary of Tourism of Rio de Janeiro, Antonio Pedro Figueira de Mello, the event's goal was met: "With the help of the population, we can make a good party, civilized and more environmentally conscious. Local and foreign audience showed sympathy and adherence to our campaign for a more sustainable planet. A party with the Carioca style", said Antonio Pedro.

One of the most beautiful highlights of the night was the “music synchronized with the fireworks”, signed by DJ John Brazil soundtrack, packed with Beatles and mergers of classical music and Brazilian MPB. Among the songs played by the DJ, stood out "All you need is love", from the Beatles, and "Samba do Avião" by Tom Jobim. The elements of nature were the inspiration for “synchronized fireworks”, seen in six phases and 16 minutes.

In the “Sun Stage”, among the four stages, John Brazil opened the night and put the entire crowd to dance to their “mash-ups”, a technique that mixes two different rhythms of music within the stage. The master of ceremonies was the Brazilian actor Octaviano, who took in good humor and irreverence, the crowd in front of the stage.

There, throughout the night were also displayed more than 50 images of projections static and moving. The singer Brazilian Samba singer and composer Beth Carvalho, who just launched a new album, entertained the audience with hits like " Coisinha do Pai” and "Andança" as well as new songs.

O Rappa Group also made the audience dance to such hits as "Pescador de Ilusões" and "Minha Alma" and Latino, who recorded a DVD during his show, set fire to the stage with his "kuduro", rhythm directly inspired from Angola for the 2012 New Year's Eve in Copacabana. Already January 1, considered the greatest DJ in the world, Frenchman David Guetta, was one of the main international attractions of the night, took the stage and made the festival audience go wild, playing some of his hits like "I've got a feeling." The party ended in samba, after 3 am, with the Beija-Flor Samba-School, Rio's 2011 Carnival Champion.

On the “Water Stage”, in front of the Santa Clara Street, attractions who electrified the audience were the Brazilian 80´s Rock band “Blitz”, Moraes Moreira MPB composer and “Sargento Pimenta e Baia” samba mix group, and another important Samba-School from Rio.

Surely, it was a magical event, one who 2.5 million people will not forget for a long time!
Category: Cultural Rio
Posted by: Andre Skowronski
Greek Melkites in Brazil: Fastest Growing Catholics Communities

While Brazil is sometimes imagined as a “liberal” country, recent polls and demographics has shown quite the contrary, despite the general international imagination and association of the country with carnival, football and the beach lifestyle, as examples. Today, Brazil holds the largest Catholic community of followers in the world. If we take a closer look, states like Rio, (with its iconic Christ The Redeemer Statue), the Northeast, and the wide country-side, we can really see why Brazil has today approximately 145 million Roman Catholics, according to Wikipedia, or 147,460,000 million Roman Catholics according to CIA FACTBOOK. This makes Brazil the country with the greatest number of Catholics in the world. As per 2009, about 134,818,000 million Brazilians were baptized.



Even if we were to take the “per capita standards”, Brazil still holds the impressive record of the 7th largest Roman Catholic country per capita , only losing to Italy, Poland, Mexico, Spain, Colombia, and Argentina . With more than 5,100 Catholic churches, it is not rare to find a church in Brazilian larger cities, at every 2 blocks or so. Also, with the 554 Catholic schools, hundreds of hospitals, and almost 30 formal teaching seminars, it’s easy to understand why and how the country has such solid Catholic community and foundation.

The country which heartily received the Blessed John Paul II 3 times sees now a new movement: The fast growing community of the Melkite Greek Catholics. With 2 main Churches, one in São Paulo, called Eparchy of Nossa Senhora do Paraíso em São Paulo, and one in Rio de Janeiro, called St. Basil's Parish and Our Lady of Perpetual Help, the Melkite Greek Catholic communities are facing rapid expansions.

In São Paulo, the Eparchy was established in 1972 by Pope Paul VI and since 1999, is run by Archbishop Dom Fares Maakaroun. The Church is located in the center of the city of São Paulo, in the neighborhood which holds the same name “Paraíso”, (Paradise in Portuguese ) and can be easily accessed through a subway station, just a few meters away. The Church is famous not only because of the inner golden iconostasis, but also because of the impressive meticulously hand painted basilica, consisting a true art work.



Moving north, to Rio de Janeiro, we see another beautiful Melkite Greek Catholic Chuch, the St. Basil Parish (or in Portuguese Paróquia São Basílio). This Eparchy is run Mons. George Khoury, who was born in Syria, has two Doctoral degrees and is considered by many “a pious, charismatic and caring” Father. Rio´s Melkite Greek Catholic St. Basil Church by its chance was finalized even before the São Paulo´s Eparchy, still in 1940, under the orders of Father Elias Coueter. In 1941, the prestigious Archbishop of Rio de Janeiro, Dom Sebastião Leme, was present at the formal inauguration of the first Melkite Greek Catholic temple in Brazil.

Moving back to the title and main argument of this article, what explains or substantiates the growth of this Catholic Church, in full communion with Rome, but has several differences in terms of its Rite? I personally think the reason of such success and growth lies within two main pillars, which I will try to explain.

Brazil is known worldwide by sociologists, social geography researchers, and historians because of its “cultural adaptability and integration” of its population. As with several other areas within Brazilian society such as culture, sports, and even politics, we see a high degree of what is known in America as the “melting pot” phenomena. Here too, I can only hypothesize from what I have observed: The unique and surely Blessing and harmonic mixture of Lebanese, Syrian and Jordanian descendents in Brazil with the older Brazilian population (non-immigrant).





I have observed on both Parishes, in Rio and São Paulo, followers from all kinds of ethnic, economic and social levels, working in a full communion, for the well being of the community and its surroundings. It´s a truly emotional experience to see this “synchrony of minds and souls”, all united, connected in a single temple, in full peace, prayer and Faith. This kind of mystical experience, according to brain researchers and neuro-biologists, creates a vibrant and expanding circle of positive energy. (See studies in American Scientific Magazine)

The second reason I hypothesize for the surge and fast growth of Melkites Greek Catholic communities in Brazil is perhaps a common search, not just by Brazilians, by humanity as a whole, to find answers to a deeper inner spiritual questioning and experience of life itself. I think former Pope John II expressed in two of his famous quotes, this inner search of mankind for the utmost and undeniable desire for real meaning of life: “"Do not be afraid. Do not be satisfied with mediocrity. Put out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch.". Admired by peoples of all creeds, races and even agnostics, John Paul II inspired us to uncover the true mission of ourselves. He, as a true Apostle and Disciple of Jesus, wanted us to find authentic freedom, so we could be lead truly happy lives. Melkite Greek Catholic I think,( from what I have personally seen in Brazil), have learned this message quite quickly and cleverly.

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The reason may lie both because of the orthodoxy of the Catholic teachings, and also because the worldwide famous “Byzantine Rite”, which is extremely spiritual. The widespread use of incenses, the beautiful Iconography, the enigmatic Entrance procession, and inspiring chants in Greek and Arabic all transports us to the early times of Christianity and therefore possibly explains this unique experience. In fact, Melkite Greek Catholic Church traces its origins to the Christian communities of the Levant and Egypt and holds possibly the oldest rite ( Byzantine Rite) within the Catholic Church, dating back to the 5th century having its core to attributed to Saint John Chrysostom, Archbishop of Constantinople.


The other quote of former Pope John II , which also addresses the search of man towards the real truth of life reads as follows: "Faced with today's problems and disappointments, many people will try to escape from their responsibility. Escape in selfishness, escape in sexual pleasure, escape in drugs, escape in violence, escape in indifference and cynical attitudes. I propose to you the option of love, which is the opposite of escape." To finalize, I can only again suppose the above mentioned experiences are the main grounds behind the fast growth of the Melkite Greek Catholics in Brazil. The other “reasons” are surely due to the transcendent power of the supernatural, and Faith most certainly.
Category: Apartments in Rio
Posted by: Andre Skowronski
While everybody talks about the crisis in Europe and the American employment rates, in Rio de Janeiro we are in the opposite side of a discussion ( and supply and demand law) at least for the niche of furnished apartments in Zona Sul. As we all know, Rio is going through this boom because of the series of mega events, shows, conferences and to find good quality furnished apartment in Zona Sul maybe one of the hardest tasks today, even for the most experienced rental companies in Rio. House hunting became a real “mission impossible” task for many locals and foreigners who need design or nicely done furnished apartments. They simply evaporated and the reason for this phenomenon is the subject of this post in Belavista-Rio Blog.

Below, Leme Executive Apartment Video - A great Option in Zona Sul:



House hunting in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil became a nightmare for everyone working with foreigners in Rio: expats agencies, re-location companies, specialized agencies and real estate consultancy companies, not to mention the corporations that are recruiting these foreigners. The reason for this scenario is a product of a combination of simultaneous situations.

1) Law of supply and demand – There are simply much more people looking for apartments in general in Rio than the construction market could supply, in terms of new launch. One of the reasons is obvious: In Zona Sul, there is nowhere else to construct new buildings. The Zona Sul “area” in Rio is literally built between the mountains and Rio´s shoreline / beaches.

2) Because of Rio´s booming oil industry, Brazil is importing executives because of the lack of specialized marine engineers and naval constructors. In the face of this reality, there is a huge influx of foreigners to fill in the gap of these positions. The consequence is you have an added number of searches for these kinds of apartments.

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3) Short time rentals. Many apartment owners in Rio, especially in Copacabana prefer to rent their properties for very short periods, which normally deteriorate the apartment. The net result is that the few apartments “left” sometimes are not up to the standards of executives who naturally want clean, design, sophisticated apartments to stay in, especially if they are moving with their families.

4) Many foreign executives prefer to live or experience “an authentic live of a Carioca”, and that normally means the Zona Sul, (South Zone ) area in Rio. With this, Barra neighborhood which indeed has many new buildings, sometimes is not an option, and therefore limits again the “house hunt” to these few refined apartments at Ipanema, Lagoa, Flamengo, Copacabana, Leblon neighborhoods. Many views Barra as a “Miami” experience since you need a car even to buy your fresh bread, so Barra sometimes is not really preferred by some foreigners, especially Europeans. (The theory is not valid obviously if the company in which the executive was hired has its HQ at Barra. )

5) Finally, some Brazilian who indeed have good properties are resistant to see the opportunities (and advantages) of furnishing an apartment for medium length rentals. Some still think people will not treat their property with care and avoid making investment in quality furniture and finishing. Because of this, new comers to this market have to be educated about how effectively the market works, the ROI, until he finally decides to give in, and elegantly decorate his property (and consequently earn much more…)


Below, another Ipanema Apartment for Rent in Rio in video:



So, to conclude, what you may be experiencing in terms of house hunting in Rio is more than true. The fact is that to find “quality apartments” in Rio you have to spend hours and hours of research, with no guarantee of success. In this case, the best option we suggest is a specialized search, which can try to conciliate wishes & desires with what is in fact available, or scheduled to be available. In any case, don´t give up, because Rio is worth the effort! Cheers!
As the competitive Brazilian Football Championship reaches its final games, Fluminense Football Club, 2010 Cup winner, maintain its chances after 2 striking victories: 5 X 4 over Gremio and Fluminense 4X0 over Figueirense.

In order to Football ( and or soccer in America ) lovers to learn more about the this amazing sport, we selected an anthology of amazing goals in the recent history in video.



Fluminense's dream of keeping their title was kept alive after beating Internacional 2-1 in Porto Alegre.
Goals from Rafael Moura and former Internacional striker Rafael Sobis silenced the sold out Beira-Rio stadium and sparked Fluminense's title chances in to life.

The game started with Internacional playing at a high tempo, immediately putting the Tricolor defence on the back foot. Fluminense managed to absorb the Colorado pressure and on the seventeeth minute got themselves in front when Deco's cross found Rafael Moura at the back post, who headed his side in to the lead.



On the thirty seventh minute, Fluminense defender Leandro Eusébio was caught napping. Seleção stiker Leondro Damião intercepted the ball from Eusébio and then whipped in a cross that found Oscar who arrived at the far post. The 20 year managed to latch on to the cross drawing his side level and sending the Inter faithful in to full voice.

Inter's equaliser didn't last long. On the stroke of half time, former Barcelona midfielder Deco sent the ball in to the path of Rafael Sobis. The former Inter striker found himself through on goal and then smashed his shot straight in to the far corner of Muriel's net.



When the two teams came out for the second half, it was Fluminense who put Inter on the back foot. Despite not really testing the Colorado goal, the Carioca side managed to take the tempo out of the game.

Inter tried to press forward, but their chances to get the equaliser became more difficult when defender Juan recieved his marching orders after picking up his second yellow card for a foul on Sobis.


Fluminense managed to see out the game, taking home all three points and now just sit two points off league leaders Corinthians in the table.
FIFA World Cup Posters from 1962 in Chile to Spain in 1982

Hello, belavista-Rio readers and football lovers too! We are giving continuation to our series to present history of football through the series of Official FIFA World Cup Posters. On this post, we will present the FIFA World Cup Posters from 1962 in Chile, all the way to Spain World Cup in 1982. In total, we will present 6 different posters with a great variety of artistic style, colors, esthetics, and superb design. I hope all of you can have a feel and taste of the “esthetics of the period”, which covers at least 30 years. Join us in this interesting journey through art and football passion!


Below, we see the 1962 Chile FIFA World Cup Poster

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Below, we see the 1966 England FIFA World Cup Poster

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Below, a small summary of the 1966 FIFA England World Cup:

The 1966 FIFA World Cup, the eighth staging of the World Cup, was held in England from 11 July to 30 July. England beat West Germany4–2 in the final, winning the World Cup for the first time, so becoming the first host to win the tournament since Italy in 1934.
The format of the 1966 competition remained the same as 1962: 16 qualified teams were divided into four groups of four. Each group played a round-robin format. Two points were awarded for a win and one point for a draw, with goal average used to separate teams equal on points. The top two teams in each group advanced to the knockout stage.

In the knockout games, if the teams were tied after ninety minutes, thirty minutes of extra time were played. For any match other than the final, if the teams were still tied after extra time then lots would be drawn to determine the winner. The final would have been replayed if tied after extra time. In the event, no replays or drawing of lots was necessary.

The 1966 World Cup had a rather unusual hero off the field, a dog called Pickles. In the build up to the tournament the Jules Rimet trophy was stolen from an exhibition display. A nationwide hunt for the icon ensued. It was later discovered wrapped in some newspaper as the dog sniffed under some bushes in London. The FA commissioned a replica cup in case the original cup was not found in time. This replica is held at the English National Football Museum in Preston, where it is on display.

The draw for the final tournament, taking place on 6 January 1966 at the Royal Garden Hotel in London was the first ever to be televised, with England, West Germany, Brazil and Italy as seeds.


Below, we see the 1970 Mexico FIFA World Cup Poster


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Below, we see the 1974 Germany FIFA World Cup Poster


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Below, a small summary of the 1974 FIFA Germany World Cup:

The 1974 was Holland's tournament to lose and they did, faulting badly at the final hurdle. With Johan Cruyff and Total Football at the peak of their powers, they were the red hot favorites and their World Cup odds reflected this. Franz Beckenbauer led Die Mannschaft to a title which had just gone begging in 1966 and 1970.16 teams qualified and the major omissions were France, England and Spain. In the first round, the only major upset was Poland advancing at the expense of 1970 finalist, Italy.

In the second round, the Dutch took care of both Brazil and Argentina while West Germany were too strong for the likes of Poland, Sweden and Yugoslavia.
In the final the Dutch took the lead before the Germans had even touched the ball. Unfortunately the 1-0 lead couldn't hold and they went down 2-1. For the fourth time, the hosts were victorious. Pole Grzegorz Lato was the leading scorer with seven goals.


Below, we see the 1978 Argentina FIFA World Cup Poster


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Below, the summary of the 1982 FIFA SPAIN World Cup:

The FIFA 1982 Spain Football World Cup will forever be know as Paolo Rossi's tournament. He was the leading scorer with six goals to give Italy their first victory in the World Cup in 48 years. They started out as long shots but this changed as the tournament went on. It got through to the second round without winning a match and then defeated both Argentina and Brazil.

The Italy - Brazil game game is a World Cup classic with Rossi scoring a hatrick in a 3-2 win. In the semi-finals, Italy outclassed Poland while West Germany defeated France in the first World Cup game to go to a penalty shootout. It was a tight match but Italy kicked free with three second half goals to record a famous victory.

If the 1982 tournament has taught us anything, it that you shouldn't read too much into the early online betting odds. England were eliminated despite not losing a game and the more fancied Spain, Argentina and Brazil all failed to reach the semi-finals. Instead it was Poland who reached the final four. You may struggle to qualify for the World Cup or in the early stages; what is important it to make it through to the knockout phase and hit your peak form then.


And finally, to close this post, we see the 1982 Spain FIFA World Cup Poster

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FIFA Brazil World Cup 2014 is getting closer and closer. We now have less than 1000 days left for the FIFA Brazil 2014 Football World Cup which will take place in the marvelous cities of Rio de Janeiro, Porto Alegre, Cuiab�, Curitiba, Sao Paulo , Fortaleza, Recife , Manaus, and other cities. In order to give football lovers additional an incentive to follow the 2014 Brazil World Cup, we decided to research and present all of the Official World Cup Posters designed in the history, on the promotion of these monumental events.


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It took us a reasonable amount of time, to find them, adjust sizes, confirm the versions (some had more than one version) and to download them, so football ( soccer in America ) lovers could see in one article, all of the official FIFA Football World Cup Posters, starting 1930.

Apart from the football passion, the posters represent pieces of art on its own, portraying artistic styles ranging from the Art Deco, minimalism, the classic, and finally the so called "modernism". Many of them are incredibly creative, original, and do reflect the predominant aesthetics taste of its time.



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If I had to choose one FIFA World Cup poster, I would the first one, the 1934 Italy FIFA World Cup Poster, which is clean, modern, timeless, and universal because of the display of the flags behind the footballer. My "runner up" would be 1930 FIFA Uruguay World Cup poster, which has pure Art Deco fonts and its retro- vintage look.


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We invite you football, soccer lovers all around the world, as well as non-football lovers, but passionate art lovers, to walk through the history of the art posters, and see how these aesthetics changed since 1930 until 2010. Join us in this wonderful voyage!


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Below, a summary of the 1950 FIFA Brazil World Cup

The 1950 World Cup was one of the all-time greats. Hosted in Brazil, it is best remembered for “Maracanazo” where Uruguay came from a goal down to defeat Brazil in front of the largest crowd ever crowd for a sporting event held in a stadium. Suffice to say the atmosphere was electric that day.

The World Cup was full of upsets, the most famous of which was England's shock loss to the USA. Suffice to say that if Paddy Power football betting had been around then, you would have had some very healthy odds on the USA winning. As you would have on Sweden advancing at the expense of Italy.

The World Cup is known for not having a final. Rather the final four teams each played each other once. It just so happened that the final game, Brazil vs Uruguay, was also the one which decided the winner. Brazilian Ademir topped the goalscoring list with 9 goals.


Now we take a look at the 1954 Switzerland World Cup Poster, very modern for its time.



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Below, a summary of the 1954 FIFA Switzerland World Cup

The Final: Puskás‘ ‘Magnificent Magyars’ went into the final as firm favourites against the Germans. Already Olympic Champions they has so expected to win that their homecoming celebration party had been planned down to the last detail.

Although Puskás wasn’t fully fit he made an immediate impact on the game, scoring after just six minutes. With Czibor scoring a second two minutes later, it looked like game over for the Germans.
But they quickly grabbed two goals back in the next 10 minutes to go in at half time with the scores level. Playing to restore national pride after the war the Germans rebuffed the Hungarians time and again in the second half who hit the bar and the post.

Then the Hungarians made a fatal mistake in the dying moments, heading the ball into the path of German striker, Helmut Rahn who bypassed the Hungarian defence and smashed the ball into the far corner to win the game. Austria beat Uruguay 3-1 to take third place.

Other Highlights:
In the semi-finals, tournament top scorer, Sandor Kocsis bagged a brace as Hungary knocked out Uruguay. In the other semi-final hosts, West Germany thrashed Austria 6-1.
In the quarter-finals, Kocsis scored twice as Hungary defeated Brazil 4-2. Uruguay dumped out England by the same margin. Austria beat hosts Switzerland 7-5 in a high scoring thriller. Germany eased past Yugoslavia 2-0. For the first time there was television coverage, and special coins were issued to mark the event.
World Cup Winners: West Germany 3-2
Runners Up: Hungary
Final Venue: July 4, Wankdorf Stadium, Berne (Att. 60,000)
Golden Ball Winner: Puskás
Golden Boot Winner: Sandor Kocsis
Total Goals: 140 (Average / game: 5.38)


And Now finally, the Sweden FIFA World Cup, when Brazil won for the first time in 1958:


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Category: Backstage Carnival
Posted by: Andre Skowronski
Learn about Carnival Back Pieces: Feathered Accessories in the Samba World

In the Brazilian Carnival Costume world, many are the components that make up a Carnival costume. For show samba dancers and famous celebrities, Carnival designers often use a very important accessory, which creates a marvelous visual effect: The “costeiros” , feathered back-pieces, or “esplendores” , as they are called in Portuguese. This feathered accessory, In English, can also be referred to as a carnival “shoulder adornment”. On this carnival post, we will explain how and in what context these attractive carnival costume accessories are used.

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Carnival costumes are always associated with glamour, exuberance, and luxury. With the “costeiros” or back-pieces it could not be different. Traditionally, costeiros started to be used on main carnival parade celebrities or “high-lights” members of a samba-school during the Rio carnival. ( In Portuguese these flash celebrities are called “destaques”.) Later, the “esplendores” or back-pieces became part of “common” revelers´ costumes, as samba-schools parades became richer, especially in terms of plumes and feathers. Entire carnival parade wings today have costumes with some kind of “shoulder adornment” or “esplendores”, with different kind of materials being used.

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What eventually became a “trademark” for both Carnival Queens and samba show-girls was the heavy feathered type of “costeiros” / back-pieces. Actually, many of the Brazilian Carnival celebrities “compete” each year during the carnival parade to see who will present a fancier and eye-catching costume. The majority of the most stunning costumes in Brazil indeed have built-in “costeiros” or “back-pieces”, since it is the single piece in Carnival Queen costume that holds the greatest number of feathers. Costeiros feathers are normally made of 4 (four) kind: pheasant ( Lady Amherst Feathers) , Turkey feathers , goose, and peacock feathers ( less commonly used ).


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Some Brazilian-Rio Carnival Queen back-pieces may have up to 1500 feathers and are also decorated with other artistic elements, like Swarovski crystals to enhance even more the overall look. Many of the feathers could be painted too. Some of these full costumes may cost from US$ 5.000 up to US$ 15.000,00 and could take 2 or 3 months to be totally crafted (including design/ style modifications). The individual costeiros evidently cost less ( from US$ 500,00 all the way to US$ 2.000,00).

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A second type of Carnival reveler/ samba character which is notorious for using feathered costeiros or back-pieces are samba show girls. These type of passistas normally make use of feathered headdresses and costeiros in order to create a “volume” within a stage performance. Many Carnival show girls aside from the feathered costeiros may also use feathered arm bracelets. These are attached in different parts of the arm, but should allow movements for the freedom of the samba dance routines.

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Finally, sizes of feathered carnival costeiros / back-pieces and carnival bracelets can vary substantially, which obviously influences in a direct manner it´s cost, as well as production time-frame. Their designs also vary tremendously: Some are very vertical, others have large wings, other may have more of a “horizontal twist”, while other have long tails, and the list goes on…

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On this post, we are presenting a few examples of Brazilian Carnival costeiros and phases of the production of a Carnival back-piece: The initial design, the crafting/ adjustments phase, and the final result.

Below, we see three other examples of Brazilian Back Pieces being used in different occasions.

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Category: Backstage Carnival
Posted by: Andre Skowronski
We, lovers from the Brazilian Carnival, are happy to see carnival festivities in many forms and shapes, are being developed all around the world. In England, Notting Hill already attracted more than 1 million people in 2010´s edition. This year it will certainly grow even more! Following this trend, we present a relatively new carnival group that will be parading at Notting Hill: the vibrant Flagz Mas Band!

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This soca and Carrnival band has been performing for the Notting Hill parade since 2009 with excellent results, including an important award: "Winners of the 2009 Challenge Shield for Best Medium Sized Band of the year".

The Flagz Mas Band team members are vibrant, music lovers and have a great passion for dance and costumes. Their dedication can be seen in the innovation of the carnival costumes and body paintings. They have the Carribbean Carnival as a common background, with some elements of the Rio de Janeiro, Brazil Carnival too, which makes an interesting mix.

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Learn below a liitle bit more of this growing and energetic band based in UK:


Flagz Mas Band Team:

As a team of young vibrant Soca and Carnival lovers, we decided to pool together our individual talents, and formed the Flagz Mas Band. With a large following of energetic carnival enthusiasts and carnival virgins, we took to the streets of Notting Hill in 2009 and came away, not only with a reputation for being a safe, fun and well organised band, but also with the Challenge Shield award for Best Medium Sized Band of the Year.

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We aim to integrate revellers from all parts of the world and all ages from youngsters to grandparents into our band as we continuously spread the fun and enjoyment of Caribbean culture to the masses!

For further information, check out their website in the link provided:


Contact: Eon Pyle
Tel: +447956 815 370
E-mail: [email protected]
Posted by: Andre Skowronski
Last month we were informed that one of the Top Carnival Queens of Rio de Janeiro, Shayene Cesario, would not represent the tradtional Estacio de Sa Samba School for the 2012 Carnival. As you will read below, Shayene was an excellent queen and was authentically born and raised in the Estacio Community. Her family as well, was raised there. Her mother represented the school in the early days, as a passistas too.

We are sure Shayene, who is finishing her Law Degree, will find new opportunities both because of her charisma and also because of her great Carnival and samba skills. As homage to Shayene, we will reproduce below two videos of Shayene, so carnival lovers can see her again. The horizons for this beautiful Brazilian are open wide and she deserves all the success possible to her personal and professional life.

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We send our best wishes to the new 2012 Carnival Queen for Estacio de Sá, Vania Love, which is also a devoted samba lover and dancer.



Below the 2 videos, we posted a small Bio of Shayene, extacted from Brazil Carnival Ooah! Site.

Let´s get to know this Carnival Goddess a bit more: Shayene Cesário is a 27 years old model and law student born in Rio de Janeiro. The lovely Brazilian brunette has indigenous, European, and Afro-Brazilian roots, which clearly constructed that extraordinary look.
The Carnaval Goddess was raised in the traditional São Carlos neighborhood and started to parade at the early age of 8 with Estácio de Sá Samba School in Rio. Last year, after being considered a muse for the soccer team “Botafogo”, one of her other passions, Shayene Cesário found about Carnival Rio Girls Queen and Princess Contest promoted by RIOTUR, by a friend. Shayene rightfully enrolled at the conquest since she knew she had a good “samba dance routine” and loved carnival too.



When the Official Rio de Janeiro Queen and Princess Contest was over, Shayene Cesário could never imagine she would be crowned the Official Rio de Janeiro Carnival Queen, winning over 12 other contenders. The decision was made by a judging panel that considered several attributes for the final scores, including samba dance, overall charisma, sympathy, body elegance and facial expressions.

In 2011, Shayene became the official Estacio de Sa Queen of Carnival Drums, which lasted for one year.
Category: Rio Carnival Tips
Posted by: Andre Skowronski
How do real samba dance costumes look on professional performances? This is the topic of this new post we decided to write, per request of one our readers. Samba dance costumes for professional wear are supposed to be at the same time creative, have an “impacting look”, comfortable, but mainly durable. Feathers falling from the samba costumes, for example, are not supposed to be seen on the catwalk / or stage, not say the beads or crystals incrusted in the bikini tops or other adornments. This is an item where many suppliers don´t pay much attention. As we have written in other articles, samba dance costume quality made should last since some of the touring samba show may last for months!! To help us illustrate our point, Belavista-Rio posted below some real video footage (filmed in Rio de Janeiro ) to assist our readers understand and see how samba dance bikinis or costumes look on a stage, samba rehearsal, or in a parade. On this post, we selected three videos where different kinds of samba dance costumes and samba bikinis costumes were used in the Brazilian carnival for different purposes.


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The selected videos are not long and truly help samba dancers and carnival lovers not only to see how the costumes are presented on the Brazilian carnival, but also how they are “maneuvered” by the famous “passistas”. We hope you will get a glimpse of these samba costumes features and inspire yourself not only to “invent” your costume but also to review some of the most fabulous Brazilian samba dance routines on the planet, roots based, in the home of samba: Rio de Janeiro. In this selection of samba dance & samba bikini costumes, you will see the real passistas” – the Portuguese word which defines professional samba dancers, in most common scenarios where they are used to present themselves. We will explain in the caption above the video.

Samba Dance Costume Video 1: Samba "Quadra" Rehearsal:



This first video above shows more than a dozen of samba passistas from Estácio de Sá Samba School in a presentation. You will be able to notice you simply don´t see glitter, beads, stones, feathers on the floor of the samba-school "quadra, even though the samba dance routine is very energetic.


Samba Dance Costume Video 2: Indoor Presentation:



On this second samba dance video, the two samba dancers use a different kind of samba bikini costumes, which have part of their arms covered to add glam and elegance. You will also see the the abundance of feathers and the amazing samba routines which enchanted the spectators of the Porto Bay Hotel in Copacabana, in their traditional Carnival Feijoada- Carnival Beans Stew. Still, the costumes "stood firm and still".


Samba Dance Costume Video 3: Queen Presentation:



<b>This last samba dance costume, is a different kind you are used to see. It is normally more elaborate, with more stones, beads, and embroidery work, and used by Carnival Queens, Princesses, and Muses. It´s certainly glamorous, and adds a special elegance to a presentation. In this case this samba dance costume is a dress, sparkled with Svarowski Cystals. Is was used by the famous Shayene Cesário, Queen of Rio de Janeiro Carnival 2010, and Queen of Estacio de Sa Samba School in 2011.