By Michela DellaMonica, Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL — All are welcome to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the historic Marquês de Sapucaí or Sambódromo, Rio de Janeiro’s temple of samba, tomorrow, Sunday, February 24th at 7PM. Admission is free and partygoers are sure to experience a beautiful commemorative and religious procession by religious leaders and members of all samba schools of the Special Group and Group A.
The historic location where the Carnival parade and competition takes place – deemed Rio’s samba stadium – this celebration will be a chance for people to revel in support of its inauguration.
The celebration will begin with the traditional blessing of the parade avenue by Father Jorjão along with a procession of the holy mother led by Maria Moura of Imperatriz Leopoldinense samba school, with drums and the salute of trumpets. Then a procession of the image of Saint Sebastian will be led by actor Milton Gonçalves.
The leading couples from the Special Group samba schools will entertain the crowd, carrying their schools’ flags proudly. A drum line consisting of 120 percussionists from the different samba schools will keep up the beat.
The parade will also include the participation of a group of children, who will represent the future of samba, and thirty-five couples who will portray the old-school guards, representing the tradition of Carnival. Thirty women from Bahia dressed in white will carry red palms, which will burn and fill the Sambódromo with incense as a blessing.
To showcase the entire Brazilian religious spectrum, Father Jorjão, a celebrity priest, will recite the Our Father to the public, and Tia Nilda, from the Mocidade Independente de Padre Miguel samba school, will recite a prayer. Shango and Oya, the deities of this year according to the Afro-Brazilian religion, will be greeted with the sound of six drums.
Read more (in Portuguese).
* The Rio Times Daily Updates feature is offered to help keep you up-to-date with important news as it happens.