The parades of the samba schools of the carnival of Rio de Janeiro Y São Paulo, scheduled for the end of February, were postponed to April due to a new wave of infections from Covid-19authorities reported this Friday.
“The mayor’s offices of Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo, guided by their secretaries of Health, decided to postpone the parades of the Escolas de Samba” until the end of April, “in respect of the current picture of the pandemic in Brazil and the need to preserve lives,” the authorities of the two largest Brazilian cities reported in a statement.
The decision to postpone the sumptuous parades at the Rio Sambadrome, which attract tourists from all over Brazil and other countries, as well as those from Sao Paulo, was announced after a virtual meeting between the mayors, their secretaries of Health and the representatives of the Samba Schools of both states.
In the middle of a variant preview Omicron and after the end of the year holidays, Brazil broke the daily record for infections this week, with 204,854 cases registered in a single day, and already has more than 622,000 deaths.
“It is a necessary postponement, we will have much more security to carry out (carnival) at the end of April,” said the Secretary of Health of Rio de Janeiro, Daniel Soranz.
“Following the curve of the pandemic in other countries, we believe that it is very difficult for the current wave to continue until April,” he added.
The scheduled date is the extended holiday in Tiradentes, which begins on April 21.
The street carnival in both cities, which draws crowds behind the “blocos” (comparsas), had already been canceled at the beginning of the month due to the health situation, and at the moment there is no new scheduled date.
“Greatest Show on Earth”
“We respect science and we are going to take the balanced and appropriate measures to at the same time respect a festival that is the largest manifestation of popular culture in Brazil and that has a great impact on the economy of Rio de Janeiro,” said the Mayor Eduardo Paes, a well-known Momo party enthusiast.
The Rio and São Paulo samba school leagues supported the authorities’ decision.
“It’s the right attitude, it has all the support of the samba schools and we hope that on April 21 we can have a party of joy, as carnival commands,” said Sidnei Carriuolo, president of the Sao Paulo League of Samba Schools. present at the meeting.
The samba “escolas”, neighborhood organizations with up to 4,000 members each, spend months preparing their colorful parades, with sophisticated floats, thousands of hand-made costumes and an army of dancers and musicians who rehearse for months to show off before the juries and the stalls at the Sambadrome.
“The Rio Carnival is the “Greatest Show on Earth”, synonymous with happiness and that enchants everyone”, but “as important as the party is the life and health of the public and of the members” of the schools , affirmed in a statement the League of Samba Schools of Rio.
Those who bought tickets for the sambodrome will be able to use them on the new dates and Liesa will open a telephone line to answer questions about the tickets.
The sanitary measures that will be required to enter the venue have not yet been disclosed, but since it is a more controlled environment, such as soccer stadiums, the authorities could request proof of vaccination or other protocols.
Brazil has vaccinated almost 70% of its 213 million inhabitants with two anticovid doses.