Carnival - It's Child's Play
After the adults have had their fun on the Sunday and Monday nights of carnival, the Sambódromo is traditionally given over on the Tuesday night to the parade of the Escolas Mirins, the children’s or junior samba schools.
Last Tuesday, starting at around 5.30pm and going on to just past midnight, sixteen children’s samba schools followed in the footsteps of the big schools and paraded to a crowd of around 40,000.
The parade is non-competitive but gives children between the ages of 5 and 21 a taste of the experience of dancing with a samba school and an understanding of the structure behind the schools.
Each of the schools is made up of around 400 children and parades for about 30 minutes. Many of the schools are linked to the big schools that parade on the Sunday and Monday and many a future star of carnival learnt their trade in the Escolas Mirins.
There are restrictions on children parading with the main samba schools, so the Tuesday gives thousands of children from all over Rio the opportunity of being centre stage at carnival.
Chris Pickard @criticaldivide