There is no Brazil without carnival, and there is no carnival without Sambodromo (MAP), full stop.
During those days the city becomes a pure infinite party. All people of all ages are affected in some way.
Celebrations start early in the morning every day in a different part of the city. It's a free expression of joy, music, rithm. The streets are filled with thousands of crazy people dressed up. You cannot be involved in this massive enthusiasm.
"Bloco" is actually a block of hundreds of people following a huge truck around the streets of the city. There are everywhere, each one with its own live performing musician, from samba to rock and roll there is enough for everyone.
In the afternoon the party moves to another district, depending on the program of the day. There is basically no difference: music, costumes, dancing and a lot of fun.
Not to mention the night: there is no limit on time, as long as there is somebody with a percussion or just a couple of sticks and an empty tank, as long as there is some rithm, some will to have fun, there are people ready to have party.
What really makes the difference of Rio carnival, compared to all the rest of the world is a night in Sambodromo. This huge long stadium (recently renovated, it gathers 72.000 people) hosts one of the most impressive show in the world, if not the one.
When the first school of samba is announced, the live music is broadcasted all over the statium and the party begins. A single school can be composed by 3000 people, each of one is performing a specific task in the overall picture. The result is simply breathless.
When the first school disappears at the horizon, the emotion is still high yet there is no time: the second school is announced and a complete different music, style, costumes and vibration appear on the opposite side.
A school is divided into several different sectors, each of one with a specific task and costumes. In order to perform on this day, each sector trains three times a week, from October to February. On sundays they do a general reaharsal, on the main streets, all together.
The percussion sector is the one that gives the groove to the whole performance. Hundreds of musicians contributes to generate the rithm, the music, the sound of the whole school.
Watching the costumes, the colors, the dances, the choreography and the enthusiasm those people transmit is an experience that cannot be told or represented.
One school after another, it is 7 in the morning when the last performance ends, the sun is rising and eventually it's time to go back home and get some sleep. In a couple of hours the blocks will start again, a new day of "O Carnaval" is about to begin.