In 2023 the main parades of the Grupo Especial in Rio de Janeiro’s carnival are currently scheduled to take place on the nights of Sunday, 19 February and Monday, 20 February 2022. The 12 schools and the order that they will parade in 2023 are:
Great Rio! – And it is Grande Rio from Duque de Caxias that are finally the champions of Rio’s carnival after scoring 269.9 points out of a possible 270, having just missed out in 2020, and on three other occasions. Beija-Flor came second with 269.6; and Viradouro, champions in 2020, third with 269.4. São Clemente were relegated. The full scores are:
Thanks to the Riotur.Rio team of photographers, a quick and colourful look at the second of two nights of parades of Rio’s top samba school. On 23 April it was the turn of Paraíso do Tuiuti, Portela, Mocidade Independente de Padre Miguel, Unidos da Tijuca, Acadêmicos do Grande Rio and Unidos de Vila Isabel parade.
The results of the Grupo Especial, which covers Rio’s top twelve samba schools, will be announced in Rio on Tuesday (26 April) starting at 15.00 local time (19.00 in London). The lowest scoring school will be relegated to the Grupo de Acesso for 2023, with the winner of this year’s Grupo de Acesso joining the top 12 in 2023.
Dates of the parade of the Grupo Especial in 2023 are 19 and 20 February.
Thanks to the Riotur.Rio team of photographers, a quick and colourful look at the first of two nights of parades of Rio’s top samba school. Last night it was the turn of Imperatriz, Mangueira, Salgueiro, São Clemente, Viradouro and Beija-Flor.
The League of Samba Schools (LIESA ) has launched a new logo to be used at Rio’s carnival, and during the parades that will now take place on 22 and 23 April.
“Rio Carnaval” is imagined to reflect the movement of the “porta-bandeira”, the school’s standard-bearer, from above. It is the work of one of Brazil’s leading design agencies, Tátil Design, that was involved in developing the logo marks for the 2016 Rio Olympics.
The main parades of the Grupo Especial are currently scheduled to take place on the nights of Sunday, 27 February and Monday, 28 February 2022. The 12 schools and the order that they will parade in 2022 are (and the 2020 results out of 270 points):
Sunday, 27 February 2022
Mangueira (6th: 268.9)
Salgueiro (5th: 269.0)
São Clemente (10th: 267.0)
Viradouro (1st: 269.6)
Beija-Flor (4th: 269.4)
Monday, 28 February 2022
Paraíso do Tuiuti (11th: 266.2)
Portela (7th: 268.8)
Mocidade Independente de Padre Miguel (3rd: 269.4)
Mangueira is the last of Rio’s major samba school to choose its theme or enredo for what may be a special parade of the samba schools in July 2021. All based on if the vaccine is rolled out successfully in Rio de Janeiro.
Mangueira’s samba is “Angenor, José &Laurindo”, which refers to three of the school’s most iconic figures, the great composer, Cartola, (Angenor de Oliveira); the singer, Jamelão (José Bispo Clementino dos Santos); and the dance master or mestre-sala, Delegado (Hélio Laurindo da Silva).
2021 also marks the centenary of the birth of Mestre Delegado who performed for the school from 1948 through to 1984, when he retired as the Mestre-Sala after Mangueirahad won the Super-Championship to mark the first year of the Sambódromo. In that time Delegado had always scored a maximum 10 for his presentation.
Sadly it is looking increasingly likely that Rio’s carnival in 2021 will be badly disrupted by the impact of Covid-19, including the famous parade of the top samba schools – scheduled for 14 and 15 February – as preparations require people to work in confined spaces and close proximity.
It is also seen as impossible to have the normal crowd of 75,000 plus in place unless a vaccine for Covid-19 is found. The same for the schools to parade as each would have over 3,000 people dancing and performing in close proximity, a total of over 50,000 performers over the two nights.
Until an official decision is taken by LIESA (League of Samba Schools), probably in September 2020, the schools will continued their preparations for carnival 2021, that might even get pushed back to later in 2021.
Viradouro, the current champions, hope that if the carnival parades do go ahead in 2021, it can defend its title with a theme that will focus on the carnival and Rio of 1919, the first carnival after the First World War and the “Spanish Flu” pandemic of 1918 that killed so many people in Brazil. The samba is “Não há tristeza que possa suportar tanta alegria” (“There is No Sadness That Can Endure So Much Joy”).
Mangueira and Salgueiro are the two most successful samba schools in Rio over the last six years based on the official results. Based on those results of the last six carnivals (2015-2020), the League of Samba Schools (LIESA) ranks the top samba schools in Rio de Janeiro as:
Mangueira (65 points)
Mocidade Independente de Padre Miguel (49)
Grande Rio (41)
Unidos da Tijuca (35)
Vila Isabel (21)
Imperatriz Leopoldinense (19)
Paraíso do Tuiuti (18)
União da Ilha do Governador (7)
[Schools score 20 points for a win, 15 for 2nd, 12 for 3rd, 10 for 4th, 8 for 5th, 6 for 6th, 4 for 7th, 3 for 8th, 2 for 9th and 1 for 10th]
31 schools have paraded in the Grupo Especial since 1985.