In Rio, the world-famous parades in the sambodrome have begun with the samba schools of the rising class. The school “Arranco do Engenho de Dentro” started on Friday evening. During her parade in the rain, she told the story of Zé Espinguela, the organizer of the first competition of samba schools in Rio de Janeiro in 1929. The competition was then held where the “Arranco” school is located today.

The twelve top schools perform on Sunday and Monday. Tens of thousands in the stands and millions in front of the television in Brazil and around the world usually follow the parades on the oversized catwalk designed by the famous Brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer in the 1980s. The Rio Carnival is the biggest party in the world, the tourism agency Riotur expects up to 5.5 million carnival fans in the city.

Mayor Eduardo Paes had canceled the street carnival in recent years because of the pandemic. Only the parades in the sambodrome were postponed in April 2022. Now the carnival with all its facets is back: Hundreds of “blocos” – samba and other music groups – are expected to parade through the streets of Rio in the coming days. After the storming of the government district in Brasília by supporters of ex-president Jair Bolsonaro in January, the topic is the appreciation of democracy.