How to Celebrate a Brazilian Carnival

Here in Los Angeles we have students from a lot of different countries. This is exciting because it gives us a chance to learn more about other cultures and customs. While we are here in Valley College, we are still surrounded by different people from all over the world, who can teach us a lot about their countries. I am an international student from Brazil and to contribute to this I would like to take some time to introduce Carnival, which is a Brazilian holiday.

Carnival is the most famous holiday in Brazil. This holiday is religious and symbolizes freedom. It is celebrated every year, forty days before Easter, and finishes on the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday. Carnival time in Brazil is very exciting and interesting because the country stops completely for almost a week.

During the holiday of Carnival, a parade happens, which is called “Samba School Parade.” This is an official competition where a single school is declared the winner, according to costume, flow, theme, the band music quality, and performance. When the school starts its performance everybody screams, dances, and sings.

The traditional music during this holiday is Samba, which originates from African roots. Various types of guitar and various percussion instruments such as the tambourine are used to play Samba music. It is impossible to listen to Samba and not start dancing.

To sum up, the festivities are intense, both day and night,  but the most important event would be the Samba parade done by schools from each state of Brazil. This is an incredible event where you can experience real Brazil through its music. The best time to visit Brazil, in my opinion, is during the Carnival Parade and I hope you can all get a chance to experience it.






6 responses to “How to Celebrate a Brazilian Carnival

  • CristinaCarmen

    Your post reminds me of a news story from Romania I read recently.

    In February, it was proposed a similar festival to take place in Tg. Jiu, Romania. The proposed festival main scope is to promote archaic traditions, folk dance, songs, tales and dress, throughout Europe and the World. The festival is meant to encourage pride among the new generation of media preoccupied young Romanians, to motivate the formation of extra scholar activities, to promote cultural pride and a sense of kinship. Many similar projects are being tried out across the country, as each region bears its traditions and specific cultural elements. As of now, I participated to many like festivals, with different themes. For example, my home town has a parade each autumn where a parade is dedicated to agriculture; corn, grapes, fruits and especially the chestnuts are being venerated during the parade.

    Although I heard of other festivals across the world, like the one in Port of Spain, the capital of Trinidad and Tobago, I believe nothing will come even close to the magnitude of the Brazilian Carnival in Rio. When we think of Brazil, we think Carnival of Rio de Janeiro. Furthermore, for many, the festival represents Brazil itself, the Super party of the year.

  • wiggley01

    this has to be tha best party everrr!. i want to go there.

  • edserrano90

    I am from El Salvador and we also have a traditional carnival celebrated on November. However, I believe the Brazilian Carnival is the best in the world because I have heard and seen on TV how they prepared for this event. A lot of tourists go to Brazil to see this carnival and probably one day I will go to Brazil and dance Zamba will all the Brazilians. I know few people from Brazil and they are great people. Brazil will be holding the 2014 World Cup, and the eyes of the world will pointing at them.
    I have gone to 3 carnivals in my country, and they were so great that the city after the carnival looks like a tornado. I can imagine how the streets of Brazil look after their great carnival. Carnivals are once a year; therefore, if I would live in Brazil, I would not miss that great day. Brazil is one of the biggest and strongest countries in South America, and I personally would to know more people from Brazil because until now I have met awesome people.

  • CristinaCarmen

    Please visit and leave your comment on a topic that might interest you.

  • allthingsconsidered

    This is amazing. I have always seen and read about the Brazilian carnival but I never know that it was a religious holiday. In my opinion, other than football , The Carnival is the most well known representation of Brazilian culture in the world. Its great to have diversity around so we can learn more about other cultures. I think diversity creates the ultimate human connection.

  • c macias

    I am from Mexico, and although I cannot say I was ever well-integrated into the culture over there, we celebrate a few things. From what I can recall, many people like to celebrate New Years Day by shooting fireworks. Many people will go to the store to purchase anythings they can get their hands on, be it anything that snaps, illuminates, or even something that will explode on the ground or in the air. People tend to have a lot of fun doing this, and children especially have a good time.

    I can tell that in America, people do not celebrate together on a scale nearly as grand as the festivals in Brazil, Mexico, Spain, or in any other part of the world. In America, there are subcultures for nearly every interest. In America, you either have an interest in something or in something else and most everyone just minds their own business and is afraid of offending everyone else. Culture is handled much differently here than in other countries.

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