Five unforgettable floats we saw at the Sambadrome in Carnival 2017
Carnival is such an astonishing experience that your mind cannot process all at once. The parades present you with literally thousands of costumes, hundreds of floats, with sculptures, paintings, artwork of almost any sort, music and dance. This is one of the reasons for which it is an unique performance in the world.
After it is over, we keep reviewing the images, organizing thoughts and figuring out what was more impressive to us. So here it goes a list of five unforgettable floats of Rio’s Carnival 2017.
5. EWÉ Ó! LEAFS ON THE WIND! UNITY AND DIVERSITY (UNIDOS DE PADRE MIGUEL)
The samba schools of the access group made incredible presentations this year. We cannot leave out of the list this float presented by Unidos de Padre Miguel which praised an African deity named Ossain in its parade. It had a bold design: a giant sculpture of a woman with long hair and her body made of whirling skirts that resembled tribal vases. In the legend told, the skirts represented the wind another goddess Iansã provoked to force Ossain into sharing his secrets with the other orixás (gods). Ossain is the wise that has the power to cure through leafs and plants.
4. THE LONG HOUSE OF INDIAN CHEAF OF TABAJARA GREAT NATION (BEIJA-FLOR)
Beija-Flor samba school developed the story of a Brazilian famous novel by writer José de Alencar about the impossible love of an indian virgin for an European conqueror. This was the third float in the parade representing the family hut from where Araquém, the indian chief, ruled over thr tribe. The straw artwork reproducing an actual indian long house was breathtaking.
3. MOUNT PURGATORY (SALGUEIRO)
Salgueiro’s parade was based on Dante’s Divine Comedy in a wise metaphor with the carnival party. This float caught our eyes with hundreds of people on it in small clothes representing the carnival party goers trying to purge their sins commited during the festivities. At the base of the mount stronger colours going milder as it approached the top where it was plain white. All the décor and the costumes matched the pattern. The performers were all amateurs recruited amongst schools fans. They rehearsed the choreographies for months.
2. OPENING-FLOAT, A DESIRE IN THE ALTAR (MANGUEIRA)
Mangueira samba school brought this year as theme the religiouness of the Brazilians. The parade’s opening float was a gigantic barroque altar, crowded with images of saints revered all around Brazil. Some of the oratories had actual people dressed in saints’ costumes. So decorous and elegant at the same time.
1. THE LAMENT OF RIO DOCE (PORTELA)
In the poetic trip of champion samba school Portela through the rivers of the world and its own history there was space for a fearless protest. A very strong image represented by a float and the wing coming before it. A giant sculpture of a man crying for the loss of his home and land flooded by toxic waste from a Mining Company. It was the worst environamental tragedy in Brazil. Water like mud gushed from it. The people before the float were dressed in rags and carried handwritten posters against environmental crimes.