By Beatriz Miranda, Contributing Reporter

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – This Friday, January 26th, Casa França-Brasil, the France-Brazil Cultural Center, in Centro, will open the CasaBloco, music festival aimed at celebrating Brazil’s Street Carnival. Until February 13th, the event will promote masquerade balls, blocos, workshops and “rodas de samba” every day.

Rio News, Brazil News, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Carnival 2018, Amigos da Onça, Carnival bloco
Amigos da Onça, one of the coolest Carnival blocos in Rio, performs at CasaBloco on Saturday, February 3rd, photo by Micael Hocherman.

The first edition of CasaBloco will bring the best of Brazilian Carnival to Casa França-Brasil by gathering blocos from five different cities: Rio de Janeiro, Salvador, Olinda, Recife and Brasília.

Director of CasaBloco, Rita Fernandes came up with the idea of promoting a big Carnival encounter in order to create something positive for Rio de Janeiro:

“CasaBloco is a joint effort of partners who are Carnival lovers, want to spread something new in the city and gather people,” explains Fernandes to media outlet O Globo.

This Friday, January 26th, bloco Afoxé Filhos de Gandhi will open the festival with a spiritual cleansing ceremony, at 10AM. One of the most important Afro-Brazilian blocos in Rio, Filhos de Gandhi’ traditional ceremony hopes to attract good energies for the event and for Carnival 2018.

Friday’s line-up goes on with a culinary and costumes’ fair, which starts at 1PM. Spinning on the floor at 9:30 PM will be DJ Doni, who will be followed by great samba attractions, like Mariene de Castro, Nelson Sargento and Toninho Geraes.

On Saturday, January 27th, iconic Afro-Brazilian bloco Ilê Aiyê, from Salvador, Bahia, will offer a percussion workshop at 10AM. The evening line-up promises to thrill the audience as the great Carioca blocos Tambores de Olokun and Cordão do Boitatá share the stage with Ilê Aiyê at 6PM. Following, DJ Montano will run the pick ups; at 11PM, Ilê Aiyê and Cordão do Boitatá return to the stage to close the night.

Traditional blocos from Brasília, Recife and Olinda will be starring at the event on the following weekend. On Saturday, February 3rd, group Bonecos Gigantes de Olinda performs along with Carioca bloco Ansiedade and Calango Careta (Brasília) at 5PM. At 12PM, Carioca fanfare group Orquestra Voadora will go up on CasaBloco’s stage, followed by Rio’s hyped bloco Amigos da Onça, which will play at 2:30 PM.

“We are thrilled to celebrate Carnival along with CasaBloco! We want everyone to get goosebumps, to loose it, to set free all the animals kept inside with the magic of the best party on Earth!,” says dancer Karen Lino, one of Amigos da Onça’s members.

On Sunday, February 4th, bloco Frevália, from Recife, performs at 6PM, presenting to the audience the best of Frevo, traditional music genre from Pernambuco State. Afterwards, DJ Pepe Jordão continues the party with a setlist of Brazilian music.

Until February 4th, CasaBloco’s attractions happen from Friday to Sunday. From February 8th to February 13th, the event happens daily. All the day activities are free. Shows happening after 9PM cost R$15 or R$30.

What: CasaBloco
When: January 26th to February 13h – see event to check time details
Where: Casa França-Brasil – Rua Visconde de Itaboraí, 78 – Centro
Entrance: FREE until 9PM; R$15-R$30 afterwards.


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