Workers make carnival float at a workshop of Unidos de Vila Maria samba school in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Feb. 14, 2020. Each year in Brazil's most famous Carnival celebrations, competing samba schools will pick a topic to base their performance on, and this year the 2,500-member Unidos de Vila Maria chose China. (Photo by Rahel Patrasso/Xinhua)
SAO PAULO, Feb. 15 (Xinhua) -- "United we are strong" is the message that Unidos de Vila Maria samba school wants to share at this year's Carnival parade held in Rio de Janeiro, said Cristiano Bara, the school's artistic director.
"It's an example set for us by China, which has succeeded in uniting 56 ethnic groups to become the strong country it is today," Bara told Xinhua.
Each year in Brazil's most famous Carnival celebrations, competing samba schools will pick a topic to base their performance on, and this year the 2,500-member Unidos de Vila Maria chose China.
China's evolution from a millenary civilization to a modern economic powerhouse will be told through dance, music and eye-popping costumes at the Carnival.
Spectators can expect to see a parade of elaborate floats featuring Chinese cultural icons, including dragons, pandas, pagodas and the teachings of philosopher Confucius, as well as aspects of China's rich multiethnic society and contemporary life.
In order to better illustrate the Chinese story, Bara, creator of the performance, and Adilson Jose Souza, president of Unidos de Vila Maria, traveled to five Chinese cities to experience the country, sponsored by the Brazil-China Sociocultural Institute.
"We needed to be in China to feel the emotions, get to know the people, and see the plazas and smart cities," said Bara.
They also attended a special presentation of Peking opera, and borrowed some elements of the performance for their own show, which Bara described as "an open-air opera."
The school is set to hold its parade on Feb. 22, with the participation of some 350 Chinese people living in Brazil.
Bara shared some of the highlights of the performance, such as inventions from China, from gunpowder and porcelain to 5G technology.
"To talk about China, we will talk about its 5,000 years of history, its dragons and its contribution to the planet. It's not an isolated China. It's a China for the world," Bara said.