Rhythms and sounds of Brazil: a musical palette


In a country of continental proportions like Brazil – with more than 8 million square kilometres (3.2 million square miles) – the rich diversity is reflected not only in the variety of ecosystems, but especially in the people, culture and musicality across the five different regions.

With a mixed population combining cultures from indigenous peoples, Europeans, and Africans brought during the colonial period, the result could not have been other than an explosion of rhythms and sounds that resonate in Brazilian daily life. In this geography of sounds, histories, and traditions, some rhythms better represent the identity of each region.

Bumba Meu Boi, Carimbó and Lambada

In the North, for example, the African culture, mixed with indigenous traditions and a touch of European influences, resulted in a colorful folklore festival called Bumba Meu Boi, which is celebrated throughout the Amazon region. Inspired by carimbó, the cheerful lambada is danced in pairs and conquered Europe in the late 1980s.

Once in the Amazon, a must-go in Manaus is the Amazon Theatre, where, in addition to visiting its imposing construction of eclectic Renaissance architectural style, you can watch spectacles of popular rhythms, dance, classical music, and drama. Opened in 1896, it was listed as a National Historic Heritage in 1966 and is considered one of the main venues for appreciating and disseminating cultural and artistic expressions in the region.

A few steps from the theater, you can stay at the charming Hotel Villa Amazônia. It is a historic mansion remaining from the golden age of the rubber industry that was completely restored. It has 30 apartments, all facing an incredible interior garden with a natural stone pool.

Frevo, Zabumba, Accordion and Axé

In the Northeast, no one can resist the beat of the frevo from Pernambuco and the triangles, zabumbas (drums),…

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