Easter 2013 in Rio

The long Easter weekend in Rio is a special holiday. Known as “Semana Santa” is a time of long-held Easter traditions and religious celebration. Around this time you’ll also find many non-religious events being held. Good Friday, or “Sexta Paixao”, is a national holiday in Brazil, with most businesses and schools closing on Thursday, Friday, and Monday.

If you happen to be in Rio around this joyous time, you can find many events and celebrations to attend. Here are a few that might interest you for the 2013 celebration:

Gringo Cafe

The cafe will be hosting an Easter edition of their new “Gringo Lounge”. A DJ will be featured, as well as a host of new menu items like red velvet cake, chocolate peanut butter cups, a flourless chocolate cake, and special Easter eggs benedict.

Religious Services

Christ Church of Rio will be holding a Holy Communion and a shared meal on Thursday at 7:30 pm. They will also have a bilingual English and Portuguese service at 3pm on Friday. On Sunday, communion will begin at the Christ Church at 8am, and be followed by another one at 10:30am. The Union Church will also be hosting a pancake breakfast between 8:30 and 9:30 am and have a Celebration Service at 10am. An egg hunt will follow these events.

Favela em Danca Festival

A dance festival is being held at the NGO Solar Meninos de Luz in the hills above Ipaneme and Copacabana. Dance styles, work shops, exhibitions, and competitions will be held.

(Outside of Rio)

Holy Week in Ouro Preto, Minas Gerais

During this special week, every year this town transforms into a town full of colorful religious imagery. Beautiful carpets stretch between all the churches forming  a religious path of sorts. Actors also portray scenes from the bible on the streets.

Lollapalooza in Sao Paulo

This 3 day music festival will have some of the biggest names in music in attendance, including Pearl Jam, Deadmau5, the Killers, Criolo, and Graforreia Xilarmonica.

Rio 2013 Music Conference Festival

Around this time of year, much of Brazil is focused on Carnival, however there’s another big event going on at the same time. Starting February 8th, and lasting 5 nights, is the Rio Music Conference Festival, which focuses on dance and electronica music.

The festival already has quite a line up:

DJs Tiësto

Fatboy Slim

Richie Hawtin

Bob Sinclar

Erick Morillo

Colombian-American DJ and producerErick Morillo said of the event. “Firstly, the people in Rio always make me feel so welcome. Their energy on the dance floor is something you don’t find everywhere, so I’m always super excited to come back to Brazil!” Morillo is currently on his Brazil Carnival Tour and is scheduled to headline the final night of the festival on February 12th. He will be followed by Ask2Quit (feauturing Leo Janeiro, Marcelo Cic and Vagalume VJ).

This festival is broken into three segments comprising larger festival that begins on February 1st. The first part of the festival is the business end, the second part is the workshops, and the third part is the concerts open to the public. The opening ceremony took place on January 31st with a presentation of awards. Some of the honorees were DJ Gui Boratto, DJ Meme, and Brazilian House DJ.

DJ Meme is scheduled to play a concert on February 11th, which is the same night electronic music legend Bob Sinclair will perform. One of Sinclair’s best known songs is “Rock This Party (Everybody Dance Now)”. DJ Richie Hawtin will headline on February 10th, as well.

One of the most looked forward to performers is DJ Fatboy Slim, who will take the stage on February 12th at 2am. He is well known for such hits as “Praise You” and “Weapon of Choice”. He has performed at the festival on multiple occasions.

If you’d like to see a complete list of performers and their schedules, you can visit the festival’s website here: http://www.riomusicconference.com.br/index.php?option=com_content&view=category&layout=blog&id=120&Itemid=300&lang=pt

Amazonas Opera Festival

You may have been to an opera festival before, but have you ever been to one in the heart of the Amazon? Manaus, the capital city of Amazonas state in Brazil, hosts an opera festival every year between April and May and has been doing so for 16 years this year.

The Amazon Theater is host of most of the festivals main events, but there are several other surrounding vendors that host events as well. The theater is a stunning piece of Brazil’s history, and seeing it during the festival is the best way to experience the phenomenal sights and sounds it has to offer. Living up to Manaus’ vision of it standing out as a jewel in the heart of the rainforest, the theater is dotted with Italian columns and statues, beautiful French interior furniture, 198 Italian chandeliers, and an enchanting “meeting of the waters” curtain.

The official orchestra of the festival is the Amazonas Philharmonic, which is a relatively new orchestra formed in 1997 and features lead conductor Luiz Fernando Malheiro. The orchestra performs concerts of classical arias, recitals, and provides the music for full length operas held during the festival. You can catch a preview of the orchestra below.

Amazonas Philharmonic

There are a number of packages that travel companies have designed to make your Opera Festival stay an easy and pleasant one. Our favorite and most inclusive that we’ve seen so far is:

  • VisionofBrazil.Com – A 3 day package is available with meals, hotel stay, concert performances, transportation, and flight all scheduled for you. If interested, the link to this package is:  http://www.visionofbrazil.com/Destination/Manaus/Package/Opera-Festival-of-the-Amazon.aspx

Official site of the Amazonas Opera Festival