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LONDON EDITION Jan 31st - Feb 13th 2014

‘UNIQUE EXPERIENCE’ British Ambassador to Brazil, Alex Ellis speaks about his work and the growing collaboration between the two nations >> Pages 6 and 7


Photo: Divulgation/ UK in Brazil

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With the opening of the long awaited World Cup in Brazil just around the corner, the Brasil Observer reflects on the perception of the population in the months before kick-off and launches special content that will feature the 12 host-cities >> Pages 10, 11, 12 and 13

Photo: Divulgation/Adidas


IN FOCUS Brazil, Latin America, the UK and Europe

04 05

BRASILIANCE Dilma defends the Brazilian economy in Davos

06 07

UK IN BRAZIL Interview: Alex Ellis, British ambassador

08 09



Mauricio Brandes: a heartthrob on the stage

EDITOR IN CHIEF ana toledo

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Host-cities special: Brasilia

12 13

kate rintoul



FRONT PAGE REPORT Regarding the ‘World Cup of the World Cups’


From Bogota, a story of political intrigue

guilherme reis

PUBLIC RELATIONS roberta schwambach r o b e r t a @ b r a s i l o b s e r v e r. c o . u k


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BRASIL OBSERVER GUIDE Brazilian sounds and much more

16 - 17









Antonio Veiga, Gabriela Lobianco, Inner Space, Luciane Sorrino, Nathália Braga, Renato Brandão, Ricardo Somera, Rômulo Seitenfus, Rosa Bittencourt Shaun Cumming , Wagner Aragão, Zazá Oliva


wake up colab


BR Jet Emblem Group LTD


Iliffe Print Cambridge



A period of reflection and preparation has come to an end, and now the moment of action has arrived. Though we should remember that a chosen path must always be planned so that the challenges and difficulties faced are overcome without major shocks. It’s with this in mind that we publish our first issue in 2014, with lots of excitement for the months ahead. Many expectations accompany this challenging year for Brazil, it seems as though many have been counting down to 2014 ever since the country was chosen to host the World Cup. On 13 June the balls will start rolling on pitches across Brazil and until then you can follow all the lead up here in the Brasil Observer where we’ll be covering important matters and interests. Starting in Brasília, our special coverage for the 2014 World Cup will give you great insight into all 12 host cities and our Travel section will tell you everything you need to know. As we have already discussed in previous editions, 2014 is an important year beyond the major sporting event. It is also a general election year, with Brazilians taking to

the polls in October. President Dilma, who is running for re-election, has to make very considered political steps and eyes will be on her handling of any repeats of last summer’s political protests. She is also facing pressure from FIFA, who want solid affirmation that the construction works for the World Cup will be completed and from international politicians, most recently with her debut at the World Economic Forum in Davos (red more on pages 4 and 5). Also in this issue you can find an exclusive interview with Alex Ellis, the British ambassador to Brazil, speaking about British initiatives in Brazil and partnerships between the two countries - read more on pages 6 and 7. With the diversity of flavours that Brazil can offer, and with high hopes for 2014, we launch this edition and invite you to enjoy the content prepared for you, our reader. Have fun! And do keep in touch, you can contact me at

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Photo: Roberto Stuckert Filho

President Rousseff with Raúl Castro

BRAZIL: FROM DAVOS TO HAVANA Days after speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, (see pages 4 and 5), Dilma Rousseff, has travelled to Cuba, to participate in the second edition of CELAC (Community of Latin American and Caribbean States) summit. Rousseff will also see the first stage of completion of the Port of Mariel development, which has been part financed with Brazilian resources. Iitiated in 2010, the project is being built by the Brazilian construction company Odebrecht and received US$ 682 million from the BNDES (Brazil’s National Bank for Economic and Social Development), of the total planned investment of US$ 957 million. The expansion of Port Mariel, located 45 km west of Havana, is considered an emblematic work of collaboration between Cuba and Brazil. Some experts pointed out that Brazil sees investment in the port as a future bet on the end of embargos exercised by the United States. The port will give Cuba a modern sea outlet, improving infrastructure for Brazilian industries already on the island and flexibility of the local workforce. It will be followed with tax incentives for Cuba to produce goods to export to countries of Central America, and should an end come to the embargo, the port is well placed to link Cuba to ports on the U.S. East Coast. Rousseff also used the visit to thank the Cuban government for providing Brazil with doctors. “I want to thank the government and the Cuban people for the enormous contribution to Brazilian health system through the More Doctors program,” she said. She also told the audience that Cuban doctors are having “widespread acceptance” among the Brazilian people and that the program is a sign of solidarity and cooperation in relations between the two countries.



The UK economy slowed in the fourth quarter of last year, but ended 2013 with an increase of 1.9% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), according to data released in late January. With this result, after almost no growth in 2012, the country has recorded the best performance since 2007. Despite the improvement, the value was still below that achieved six years, before the financial crisis, when UK GDP increased 3.4 %. Considering the fourth quarter of last year compared with the previous three quarters, the service sector had a 0.8% expansion, industry increased 0.7% and agriculture was up 0.5%, however construction fell 0.3 %. After the announcement, the UK’s chief Finance Minister, George Osborne, said the results confirm that the government’s plan is working and that “more growth means greater job security and opportunities for people.” The Labour Party leader, Ed Miliband, argued that growth and falling unemployment are welcome, but this does nothing to address the crisis in the cost of living that affect millions of low-income people in the UK.

After over two months of political tension in Ukraine, on Tuesday 28 January, the country’s Prime Minister Nikolai Azarov presented his resignation, while the Ukrainian parliament met in extraordinary session to repeal the package of laws restricting fundamental rights that he had put in motion. In his resignation letter, Azarov said he was leaving office in order “to create additional opportunities to achieve political and social agreement and achieve a peaceful setting” and to bring an end to the long conflict has seen thousands of protesters on the streets. The package of anti protest laws had been put into effect to try to stop the uprising against the Ukrainian government, but the measure had the opposite effect, creating greater grievances from the portion of the population opposing Azarov. Since November, Ukraine has experienced a wave of protest after the Yanukovych government refused to sign an agreement with the European Union. Since then, thousands of people took to the streets daily to criticise the president’s decision. According to the Ukrainian constitution, the resignation of the prime minister is also extended to the entire government they led. The current government, provisionally headed by First Vice Prime Minister Serhiy Arbouzov, will continue to manage affairs until the formation of a new team through elections.

SOUTH AMERICA: DISPUTE FOR THE SEA The International Court of Justice based in the Hague, Netherlands, has granted Peru part of the Pacific Ocean that the country claims as theirs and wrongfully controlled by Chile. Peru claimed 38.3 thousand square kilometres of the Pacific Ocean, which represents 1% of the Chilean exclusive economic zone. The two governments have pledged to respect the decision that puts an end to six years of litigation. The question had also drawn Bolivia into the fray, who appealed to the Court in 2011 as a third party involved in the dispute. At the time, President Evo Morales said the issue directly involves his country because it goes back to an earlier disagreement between the three countries in 1879. The dispute dates back to the so-called War of the Pacific (1879-1883), in which the countries disputed territory. At the end of the war, Chile annexed areas of the two countries - the Peruvian province of Tarapaca and Antofagasta in Bolivia area, which meant that Bolivia lost output to the sea.



ROUSSEFF MAKES SPECIAL ADDRESS IN DAVOS Dilma Rousseff makes her debut at the World Economic Forum in Davos, showing that her government embrace international capital and answering critics at home and away By Wagner de Alcântara Aragão

For the first time, and in the year that ends her first term in office (there could be more to follow, if re-elected), President Dilma Rousseff attended the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, on 24 January. Rousseff joined the other 2500 people, including politicians, dignitaries, business executives and entrepreneurs to give a special address on Brazil’s economic outlook. Rousseff used her speech to prove that her leftist government embraces the free market and will continue to encourage foreign investment. In an election year, this approach was taken to build international confidence and appease attacks on fiscal

policy from neo-liberals at home who threaten the reelection of the current centre-left. In Davos, Rousseff made it clear that Brazil is open to foreign capital, discussed national programs aimed at strengthening urban mobility and infrastructure logistics, presented data on the country’s social advances in relation to the reduction in inequality over the last ten years and stressed the consistence of Brazil’s democracy, symbolised by its quick response to the “June demonstrations”. Rousseff also played down the country’s economic problems, noting that they do not outweigh the accumulated achievements made in the last decade. “Brazil is now one of the broadest attractions for business opportunities. Our success in the coming years will be associated with the partnership with investors from around the world. Brazil has always welcomed foreign investment. My government has taken steps to further facilitate this relationship. Aspects of recent events should not obscure this reality. As I have said, so far Brazil needs and wants partnership with national and foreign private investment”, she said. The impetus to reiterate that Brazil remains open to external investors has been justified by recent difficulties in this sector, which have been widely reported in the major national and international media as signs of a ensuing crisis. At the end of 2011 the media alarmed us to the supposed risk of perpetual blackouts, which have never even threatened to happen. Last year the seasonal high price of fresh produce, particularly tomatoes, became a symbol proclaimed “runaway” inflation, although rates since have shown the opposite to be true. At home and abroad Rousseff and her aids have made a colossal effort to assure the public otherwise and this speech was a continuation of that. Though Rousseff also sought to answer questions put to Brazil from aborad, particularly those asked of Finance Minister, Guido Mantega. The Brazilian government’s economic policy has been criticised by some international observers linked to the financial market since the Central Bank began a process of reducing the basic interest rate of the economy, in August 2011. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) and publications like the Financial Times and The Economist have been “asking for Minister Mantega’s head” at times. Latest figures from the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE) do show signs for concern, the country ended 2013 with prospect of growth in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) close to minimum levels and Industrial production, for the year to November recorded only a slight increase of 1.4%, which is insufficient to replenish the decrease of 2.4% in 2012. It will still be some time before the investments in logistical infrastructure, announced in 2012, will start to show an effect. However, Brazil did end 2013 by adding achievements to its economy. Unemployment was below 6% (half of rate of unemployment in the developed countries of the Northern Hemisphere). Once again salaries showed above inflation rises. The number of mortgage agreements expanded, in addition to other lending and retail sales, among other good news (see the box for more data), all of which acts as a counterbalance

to unfavourable indicators on GDP and the media’s vaunted catastrophism. In her end of year statement to the nation, President Rousseff criticized the fatalism that prevails economic analysis. “If we dive into pessimism and being trapped on smaller disputes and petty interests, we will have a smaller country. If some sectors, whatever the reason is, instil distrust, especially unwarranted suspicion, that’s too bad. The psychological warfare can inhibit and delay investment initiatives”, she said. It could be argued that previously the government has been too timid in its opposition to the outlined crisis reported by the mainstream media. Recently and with the data in her hands, Rousseff has shown the public that inflation has not run out of control and that the reduction of interest rates benefited the productive sector, including industry, reassuring the public that the government had preferred to take a less interventionist approach to on economic policy to allow the market to “calm down.” The success of this action can be seen in the current process of increases in the base rate (Selic). From April 2013 to January this year, there were seven consecutive changes, the Selic grew from 7.25% per annum (the lowest percentage since 1986) to return to double-digit (it is now 10.5% per annum). This has won the government support from the manufacturing sector - the president of the Brazilian Association of Machinery and Equipment Industry (Abimaq), Luiz Aubert Neto, praised this as a true “crusade” of President Rousseff, though opponents have been quick to try and use this as the basis of fresh criticism. The president of the Federation of Industries of São Paulo (Fiesp), Paulo Skaf, affiliated to the PMDB (Party of the Vice-President, Michel Temer) and assumed pre-candidate for governor of São Paulo, has beaten hard against the recoil of the Central Bank. “With this new increase in the Selic, 2014 starts badly, indicating that the industry will be left for later. Brazil can’t wait. We must free ourselves of the exclusive policy of increasing interest and have economic growth as a new focus. Inflation needs to be contained, but it is necessary to seek alternatives to combat it without penalising both economic activity, corporate life and the public”, he said in a statement on January 15. Rousseff’s government has responded to some criticisms, when pressed by contractors and international investors, the government relaxed the rules of the Investment Program in Logistics. Launched in August 2012, the plan includes concessions to private initiatives in relation to highways, railways, airports and ports in exchange for refurbishment and capacity increase. The government intended to have greater control over the rate of return (profit) for franchised businesses, though this was accused of promoting “the heavy hand of the state” on the private sector. After hearing complaints from business owners, the government gradually gave way, mainly to international capital in order to promote the advantages of applying resources to infrastructure. Government members participated in international workshops, with President Dilma Rousseff herself speaking at one of these meetings. Last September, after attending the UN General Assembly in New York, Rousseff spoke about the 5

FINANCIAL HEALTH CHECK FOR BRAZIL partnerships required by the government, in the seminar “Opportunities in Infrastructure in Brazil,” sponsored by Goldman Sachs, the Metro newspaper and Bandeirantes Group of Communication. Her presence at the World Economic Forum in Davos consolidated this trajectory of greater alignment with the interests of the market. In an interview for Rede Brasil Atual Professor Giorgio Romano Schutte, Ph.D.

in International Relations said: “There is a conflict of expectations, a decline of investment, a lot of negative news and speculation about relegation (in relation to the rating risk of the Brazilian economy). What Dilma wants to avoid is the negative movements, demotion, distrust, and loss of capital, which would be a very bad scenario on the eve of elections”.

– Overview of the main sources of economic data JOBS

Photo: Michael Buholzer

- According to the Ministry of Labour, Brazil ended 2013 with the generation of 1,1 million new jobs.

FINANCE - The National Bank for Economic and Social Development (BNDES) announced that it will allocate approximately R$ 10.5 billion to finance investments in logistics in Brazil in 2014. Of that amount, R$ 2.4 billion will go to ports, R$ 2.6 billion for airports, R$ 1.7 billion for rail and R$3.8 billion for highways.

MORTGAGE LENDING - The number of mortgages hit a new record in 2013, amounting to R$109.2 billion, up to 32% on the volume recorded on 2012, according to data from the Brazilian Association of Savings and Loans.

LEVELS OF DEFAULT - Brazilian consumer defaults, determined by Serasa Experian, fell by 2% in 2013, in comparison to 2012. It was the first annual drop since 2000, when the survey was initiated.

President Dilma Rousseff greets the founder of World Economic Forum, Klaus Schwab

RETAIL - The National Confederation of Commerce estimates that in 2013, Brazilian retail sales rose by 4.5 and estimate an increase of 6.5% for the year ahead.

BUDGET FOR 2014 PROPS UP FINANCIAL CAPITAL Before her trip to Davos, President Dilma Rousseff signed the Anual Budgetaire Law of the Union (Annual Budget), which brings projections into light, showing us how that Brazil’s current positioning gives a consider-

able benefit to the country’s financial market. While in her Davos speech, Rousseff chose to focus on the planned investments of the government on public works and infrastructure, but the proportion of

budget allotted to improving Brazil’s financial system is far more generous. The budget for the Acceleration Grown Program (PAC), which brings together all the great works of the federal government in the country, is R$ 61.8 billion. For the so-called “public debt refinancing”, a practice in which the government reinvests in financial institutions, R$ 654.7

billion is to be provided. This means that in actual terms, the government guarantees ten times more to to the financial market than to it’s major infrastructure developments. The Union Budget, signed by Rousseff, also estimates for GDP growth for 2014 of around 4%, inflation of 5.3% and prime rate tax of 9.2%.

EXTERNAL AUDITORS - The current transactions of Brazil, in relation to purchases and sales of goods and services of the country with the rest of the world closed 2013 with a negative balance of U.S. $ 81.374 billion. The result corresponds to 3.66% of GDP. The negative balance is greater than 2012, which was U.S. $ 54.249 billion (2.41% of GDP). According to data from IBGE.

FOREIGN INVESTMENT - Central Bank data showed that in 2013, Brazil received U.S. $ 64.045 billion in direct foreign investment, equivalent to 2.88% of GDP. The result is slightly lower than 2012, when it totalled U.S. $ 65.272 billion (2.90% of GDP).



Alex Ellis: ‘The best thing a British Ambassador to Brazil speaks exclusively to the Brasil Observer about his work and highlights the growing collaboration between the two nations By Guilherme Reis

Alex Ellis became UK ambassador to Brazil at a time of strong social unrest, in July 2013, less than a month after the biggest demonstrations since the 1990s on the streets of the country’s major cities. Not to mention that it was just ahead of one of the most important years in the recent history of Brazil. 2014 has long been awaited by lovers of football but the year will also see a general election that will determine who will lead the new development cycle approaching, with greater popular participation and democratic maturity. So Alex Ellis came to Brazil to witness a period that will certainly be one of the most decisive for the country and also for strategic alliances with other nations. As the ambassador said in an exclusive interview with the Brasil Observer, “To be in such a country at such a time is truly unique experience”. Alex also talked about British initiatives in Brazil, as well as partnerships between the two countries, especially in the area of education, through the Science Without Borders and Chevening Scholarship programs. Before becoming UK ambassador to Brazil, Ellis was Director of Strategy for the UK’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs from 2010 to 2013, having been British Ambassador in Lisbon from 2007 to 2010. Ellis Ellis joined the diplomatic service as part of the team to support the transition to multiparty democracy in South

Africa, following the release of Nelson Mandela, prior to that, he worked as a teacher in the UK and India. You became the UK ambassador to Brazil in a very decisive moment for the country. What have you discovered about the country since your arrival? Had you been to Brazil before? I had the privilege of visiting Brazil and meeting president Lula when I was an assistant to the President of the European Commission. I have returned now as British Ambassador, to a country which remains vast and diverse, and is at the same time going through an extraordinary social and economic transformation. Brazil has an increasing political and economic weight in the world, and will be at the centre of the world’s attention with the 2014 World Cup and Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games in 2016. You worked as British ambassador in Lisbon, Portugal, between 2007 and 2010. How has this helped give you a better understanding of Brazilian society? My experience in Portugal gave me the essential background for my current position as British Ambassador to Brazil. Despite being completely different countries in terms of size, population and economy, Portugal and Brazil are connected by the language and the culture. There are differences as well; I would say that Brazil is a country of samba, not fado!

What interested you about Brazil and how were you selected to be the UK ambassador to the coutnry? Do you think you have - as one of our journalists wrote in an article last year – “the best job in the world”? The job of Ambassador to Brazil was open to anyone in the British civil service with the right skills and experience. These jobs are not just for diplomats, and I have several colleagues who come from other Ministries. I applied, was interviewed and luckily I got the job - there was plenty of competition! I think I have a wonderful job. To be in such a country at such a time is truly unique experience; not just for the World Cup and Olympics, although I am sports mad, but because of the extraordinary change in Brazil. Brazil, along with other emerging powers is currently seen as one of the world’s key economies and year-by-year it is increasing its importance in the world. Besides being a fundamental trading partner, the richness and variety of Brazilian culture reminds me of my home country, making this a thoroughly enjoyable experience for me on a personal level. Speaking about relations between Brazil and the UK, these seem to be very positive at the moment, especially after the London 2012 Olympic Games. Which areas and initiatives do you think are increasing relations between the two countries? The UK works with Brazil on a big range of

issues. Some of these are commercial, such as infrastructure, big events organisation, oil & gas, education, and some go wider than this, for example in education with the excellent Brazilian government programme Science Without Borders, and the British Chevening scholarships. In policy areas we work hand in hand on development, energy policy, climate change, biodiversity, human rights. One point I should highlight is how much work we do at a state level as well as a federal level, with growing consulates in Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Recife and Porto Alegre, and Honorary Consuls working in other cities as well. Where are the best opportunities for British companies seeking to do business in Brazil? How has the British government helped UK initiatives in the country and what is being offered to Brazil in return? The UK sees this moment in Brazil as a unique opportunity for both countries. We have identified high value opportunities in oil and gas, the marine sector, and infrastructure. There are other areas of opportunity such as education, which we are exploring. We support this work through our UKTI team across Brazil, and through other colleagues including those working on the GREAT Britain Campaign, our growing Science and Innovation network, and of course through my role as well. This support can be anything from promoting business events, ensuring British presence at the main 7

about Brazil is the people’

Alex Ellis visits the Manaus’ Arena, in the Amazon, where England will play the first match of the World Cup, against Italy

UK AND BRAZIL – USEFUL LINKS Brazil in the UK: UK in Brazil: UK Trade & Investment Brazil: Science Without Boarders UK: Chevening Scolarship in Brazil:

Photos: UK in BrazilBrazil

trade fairs and seminars, engaging with regional partners and offering consultancy and road shows across the country, as well as promoting missions of Brazilian companies to the UK. How do you evaluate the Brazilian organisation for the 2014 World Cup and 2016 Olympic Games? Some might say we should have learned more from the experience of London 2012… I have no doubts that Brazil will host unforgettable events in 2014 and 2016. The World Cup and Olympic Games are different each time and Brazil will bring

all that is great about the country to their hosting of the events. The UK has been working closely with the World Cup and Rio 2016 organisers, sharing expertise on big events safety, infrastructure and low carbon emissions, for example, as well as supplying everything from the seats for stadia to the whistle for the World Cup final.

will avoid predicting how far England will get in the competition. As Ambassador I can guarantee that our consular mission in Brazil is prepared to support the fans, working with the local authorities, the English Football Association and others: for more information go to government/bews/world-cup-2014.

The Brazilian tourism sector expects around 25,000 British fans to travel to Brazil for the World Cup. Do you think this number will be reached? I hope a lot of fans will come, although I will avoid guessing a number, just as I

What are your thoughts on British understanding of Brazil? What advice would you give a Brit who wants to visit Brazil and know more about the country? Firstly, look at a map. Brazil is so big, so diverse, that it is worth stopping and

thinking about what you want to see. It’s too big to go everywhere in a 4 year posting, let alone a holiday! Second, dip into the culture, the food, the literature and music. Third, meet some Brazilians the best thing about Brazil is the people who live there. Then get your ticket (book early, they’re not cheap) and get out there, the coast is beautiful but try to get to some other parts of the country as well; perhaps the Pantanal or the Amazon. And finally make sure that all along the way you talk to the people.



Mauricio Brandes: a heartthrob on the London stage Beauty and talent have helped the actor from Brazil’s small city of Cachoeira do Sul to act around the world, first in the US and now in London – a “culturally vibrant city, especially in regard of theatre” Text and photos: Rômulo Seitenfus

He did not ask permission to enter the world of drama, not that he needed to, this heartthrob began his theatre career by taking the audacious role as romantic lead of Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night`s Dream”. The Brazilian actor has sought and won his place in London and already proved his potential under the spotlight at the New Diorama Theatre. Having received a Masters degree from the prestigious Royal Central School of Speech & Drama in London, the gaucho from Cachoeira do Sul lived in the States before returning to the country of Shakespeare, where he has come to feel at home. “Starting at the Central School of Speech & Drama was a fantastic moment. Before then, I was not a complete actor and didn’t have much confidence when I entered the conservatory, a place with such a great tradition, even though it was my first choice.” In 2011, Brandes received the Cultural Diffusion Award from Brazil’s Ministry of Culture and was nominated twice, in 2009 and in 2010 as Best Actor at the Irene Ryan American College Theatre Festival while living in the US. “No day is like another. I can be creative in my work and touch people with it. I feel I do something important, not in a formal or presumptuous sense, but in the sense that storytelling matters in this world and we can say relevant things. In “Like Enemies of the State”, for example, we represent real stories that children interviewed by the director in Congo asked to be told to the world.” The BeFrank theatre company presents “Like Enemies of the State”. The story is based on true accounts of children abducted in Congo to fight in the civil war and who, when released or having fled, are not accepted back into their communities. To write the script, the director Tommy Lexen went to the African country in 2011, where he conducted several interviews. Mauricio Brandes plays the soldier Pierre, a boy who is torn between his adolescent jokes and the sad reality of life as a soldier. When asked how he regards the characters and works that have marked his

career, Brandes points out: “The painter Agostino Tassi, a role I played in the United States, was interesting. He lived in the seventeenth century, was extremely charismatic but also vile, he raped and extorted his fellow painter Artemisia Gentileschi. The character I am playing at the moment is also challenging, because it is very different for me, playing a 14-year old African boy.” “I was also part of two musicals that made an impression on me, “Les Miserables” and “Cats”, while in the United States, which were very fun. “The Brother’s Paradise”, which I wrote with another actor here in London, is also important to me.” When asked how he finds living in London, the actor noticeably lifts his body and brightens his expression, “It is a culturally vibrant city, especially in relation to the theatre. Even if I could choose any other city, I would continue living here. The theatre pulsates, and I am part of a historical tradition in the city. Competition exists in a way that pushes you forward, instead of just pulling at your shirt.” To the question many actors hate: inspiration. “I find it hard to be inspired by someone, but an extremely inspiring performance I saw recently was James McAvoy as Macbeth at Trafalgar Studios. It was really brilliant! I want to one day have the ability to give a performance like that.” When I ask about a role he would most like to play, he responds quickly, even before I finish the question: “Hamlet! As cliché as it might be! Maybe Nick in ‘Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf’, by Edward Albee. If it’s just based on a great script, there is one by Sir Peter Shaffer called “Shrivings”, which is perhaps the best I`ve read and would like to do, but the author hasn’t authorised it to be licensed.” I wonder if there is something in his art that transcends space and time, and ask if he finds the incarnation of characters cathartic. “The process is the means of finding a means of expressing the full weight of the material. How that material changes in different people’s hands also alters the

process and course too. That is why there is a formula in matters of action. It is vital to know different methods and what the material requires. You need to be able to choose between the rules and then break them if you want. What really matters in the end is what we do each night on stage, creating something that did not exist before and that will not exist after.”

“What really matters in the end is what we do on stage, creating something that did not exist before and that will not exist after”


With just months to go to the World Cup, Brazil is divided between the excitement to celebrate the ultimate football event and the indignation of billions of money spent on the event By Guilherme Reis

FRONT PAGE This is a historic moment, the World Cup is going to be held in Brazil, who have been five times world champion and is commonly thought of as the country of football. Some all-time football greats: Neymar, Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Ribery, among other superstars, will parade at Brazilian fields. The final will be held at Maracana, one of the largest temples of football, and there is even talk that it could be the stage for an epic duel between the Brazilian and Argentinean national teams. For lovers of the game, there is no doubt that this will be a historic competition, and even those who aren’t too bothered about the most popular sport on Earth will agree that this will be “Cup of Cups”, in President Dilma Rousseff’s words. With a matter of months to go, however, the climate in Brazil is not one of unity, as has been the case in previous events where everyone joins in support of the national team as many have wider concerns related to the political, economic and social situation of the country. Today, in any circle of friends who discuss the imminent games, it is more common to hear complaints about the exorbitant spending on the construction of stadium,; speculations about the problems that will be caused by inefficient infrastructure and apocalyptic predictions about the protests that could be taking the streets of the host cities - after all, if in 2013 Brazil had the biggest wave of protests in the last 20 years. The mass media, as it often does, is amplifying the criticisms with apocalyptic headlines about delays in the construction of stadiums and airports, suggesting scandals with revisions to spending and the perceived lack of seriousness of the government and the companies involved in the process. President Dilma Rousseff, in her role as commander of the party, has tried to calm the tempers. In public appearances she has reaffirmed that the country has an international commitment and that it will uphold, making assurances that everything will be ready on time and that Brazilians will receive the foreign fans with open arms, after all, it is time to return the affection with which we were always greeted in other countries - which is correct. Progress has been made, at this stage, no one doubts that the World Cup will be held in Brazil, the success of last year’s Confederations

Cup, even during protests, appeased even the staunchest critics who said we could not make it happen. We have seen this happen before, even as recently as South Africa four years ago. The choices to hold mega sporting events in developing countries (or emerging, if you prefer) generates so many contradictions and uncomfortable situations that it is impossible not to be contaminated by political and social issues that often outweigh the sporting factors - at least until the ball is rolling and the game underway. The protests of last summer and anti-world cup feeling has in some ways been inevitable in Brazil. At the same moment that the population is on the rise after a decade of recovery of self-esteem, with an unprecedented growth of the middle class and a growing international importance, it means that people are questioning decisions more. People’s anger about the spending of resources on the world cup is totally justified while they still suffer from expensive and inefficient public transportation, hospitals poor education and corruption scandals (either of which party was in power). It wouldn’t sit well with many people to see the construction of ultra-modern stadiums, in some cases, sharing the landscape with slums and terrible roads. It was inevitable that when another increase in bus fares was proposed in the country’s largest city, everyone took to the streets to demand “public hospitals on FIFA’s standards”. Though this outrage seems sad and a long way from the optimism that had permeated when Brazil was chosen to host the World Cup 2007. The bigger picture There is some consensus, even among supporters of Rousseff’s government, that the country lost a lot of time before it started organise itself. There were almost seven years between the choice of Brazil to host the World Cup and what do you see? Of the 12 stadiums planned, five are not yet ready - São Paulo, Curitiba, Cuiaba, Porto Alegre and Manaus. With Curitiba, running the risk of not being included in the cup with the relocation of games elsewhere, a definitive answer will be given in February. According to the latest balance sheet of the Sports Ministry, released in November, R$ 25.6 billion is being invested in stadiums, urban mobility, airports, ports, security, telecommunications, tourism and complementary


A Story of two sides: Dilm ted front to show that eve organisation of the Worl against the ev 11

Photos: Agência Brasil


Photos: Agência Brasil

ma and Blatter put on a unierything is going well on the ld Cup while demonstrations vent take place in Sao Paulo

facilities. For urban mobility, it’s R$ 8 billion accross 45 projects, however, only three have been completed. In the case of airports, R$ 6.2 billion will be invested in 30 projects, of these, ten were completed when the balance was released. As for stadiums, R$ 8.9 billion is the value of the last official estimative. In a FIFA document from 2007, revealed by the newspaper O Estado de Sao Paulo, the CBF (Brazilian Football Confederation) reported that spending on stadiums should be around R$ 2.6 billion, which shows that current spending is more than three times over budget. Such data, obviously, does not tell the whole story of how the people perceive the event, despite the government saying that the works will benefit the country after the World Cup, giving a true legacy many argue that these improvements to airports or train lines, or safety, or suitable infrastructure could have been made for less cost without the necessity to host a World Cup It would have been so much better to have finished everything on time, passing the message to the public that Brazil is a country that fulfils its commitments. This would have been a valuable legacy for a country used to “quick fixes” at the last minute and it would be crucial to our image abroad. To believe that this ever could have happened, however, is naive. When the protests of June 2013 reached the highest level, some said the giant had awaked. The truth, however, is that it has always been awake - but nobody wanted to see, or pretended not to see it. Since the start of the World Cup planning, social movements have been calling attention to the fact that thousands of people are being removed from their homes for the construction of spaces for the World Cup without minimal security of severance payments, exchange-rent, transfer to nearby locations etc. Likewise, people have thoroughly criticized the so-called Law of the Cup, by which FIFA will be exempt from taxes of about R$ 1 billion so that sponsors can fill their pockets, among other perks. All of these questions have been treated by most as “the boring stuff”. Only when it has become fashionable to go to the street do people who have never left the couch decided to scream indignation, protesting against everything,

which, strictly speaking, is the same as protesting against anything. It is quite likely, therefore, that the “Cup of the Cups” will see the biggest flashpoint in the streets, although many of the protesters are not really focusing on building something or discussing in depth any questions. Groups like Black Blocs, which so far have made lots of noise, but gained nothing of much effect, unless you count the public consent for police brutality to violently suppress those who many deems as “thugs”. The slogan “Cup will not happen” is more of an advertisement than an objective fact. The Cup will happen and most likely will be memorable, both in the sporting aspect and in relation to the perception of Brazil and its people. And if the duelling stays on the lawns rather than between the fans and demonstrators, then we will have concrete proof of our democratic maturity, perhaps the most unexpected legacy that a sporting event can have.



2014 WORLD CUP From Oscar Niemeyer’s architecture to the rise of rock music in the 80’s, Brasília boasts more culture than many federal cities and is more than ready to host seven games of the World Cup

Brasília: the federal capital It might not be the first place that tourists want to visit, but there is a lot more to Brasília, the capital of Brazil than just the pioneering architecture that first meets the eye. There are still a few gringos that think that São Paulo, or Rio de Janeiro, are the headquarters of federal government and National Congress, perhaps we Brazilian’s need to be better at showing the world what Brasilia offers. Created in the Midwest region of Brazil, the city of Brasilia was strategically planned to be the capital of the country. Its urban blueprint - known as the “Pilot Plan” was prepared by the urbanist Lúcio Costa, who started to put the project in place, with architect Oscar Niemeyer in 1956. Inaugurated on 21 April, 1960, by the President of the time, Juscelino Kubitschek, Brasilia became the third Brazilian city to be awarded capital status, fowling Salvador and Rio de Janeiro in previous eras. As a city built from scratch, the population of Brasilia has been formed by a succession of migrants from all Brazilian regions, especially the Southeast and Northeast, as well as foreigners working in 123 embassies scattered throughout the capital. Data released in 2003 indicated



that more than half the city’s population was not born there with 1.2 million inhabitants from other places compared to 1 million Brasiliensis. In the 2010 census, conducted by the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics, Brasilia’s population stood at 2,562,963 inhabitants, making it the fourth most populous city in Brazil. The city also has the second highest gross domestic product (45.977.59 real), which is the fifth largest among the major cities in Latin America.

THE CITY THAT ROCKED In addition to its architectural and social trailblazing, not many people know that Brasilia also has the reputation of being the capital of B razilian rock. A vibrant cultural scene began in the city’s first decades of life, thanks to the ideals disseminated by the University of Brasilia and dialogues between different national embassies and the thousands of migrants from all over the country boiled, creating a vibrant music industry, especially in the 1980s. Up until the late 1970s, regional rhythms


Region: Midw Population: 2 Area: 5.787,7 Climate: Trop Vegetation: C Altitude: 1.17


Amount inves Capacity: 72.7 Field dimensi Distance from

USEFUL LINKS http://www.vis

WORLD CUP 2014 13


The sustainable practices adopted during the construction of the National Stadium in Brasilia, led to it being nicknamed “Eco-arena”. The Mane Garrincha could be the first stadium in the world to receive the LEED Platinum stamp, the highest certified on sustainability and the category is the highest that a building can achieve with the Green Building Council (GBC). According to the engineer responsible for the project, Maruska Lima Sousa Holanda, all material from the demolition of the old stadium was reused. The armor and steel were sent to recycling cooperatives and the concrete was ground to form the base of the floors for the new stadium. The Arena’s roof also makes an important contribution to the sustainability of the project. The membrane is self-cleaning and uses a photo-catalytic process for the removal of dirt and dust which accumulates on the structure as when it rains the material is washed without the need for any additional product. It is estimated that the eco credentials of the building will also have a positive effect on the protection of the ozone layer is considerable: equally the same positive impact as the removal of 1,000 vehicles from traffic per day. The building also includes features to save and reuse water and energy. The rain that falls on the roof is channeled into five reservoirs where it is filtered and treated for reuse in toilets in the stadium and field irrigation.



west 2.570.160 784 km2 pical, annual average 21º C Cerrado 72 meters


sted: R$ 1,4 billion 788 people ions: 68 x 105 meters m the stands: 7.5 meters

like forró and country music still prevailed, but over the next decade Brasília saw several rock bands arise from the area, influenced by British bands like The Cure, The Smiths, The Who, and others. In the capital, groups like Legião Urbana, Capital Inicial and Plebe Rude emerged, and their music is sill listened to by new generations today.

WORLD CUP As the national capital, Brasilia could not stay out of the World Cup, even though it has to be said that it doesn’t boast a strong football tradition. The decision to host some games has been met with a lot of criticism regarding the construction of a stadium in a city in which no major football clubs exists to use it later. The two biggest teams there are Brasiliense and Gama, who were once in in the first division of the National Championship, but are far away from this level now with Brasiliense in the fourth division, while Gama are only disputing access to the last division of the national competition. Despite opposition, the promise of holding concerts after the World Cup along

with sporadic games of the first national division in, the former National Stadium in Brasilia Mane Garrincha has been completely renovated for the FIFA event, at the cost of R$ 1.4 billion, according to official figures. The stadium has a capacity of 72,000 and opened in May 2013. Completed in good time and having successfully hosted the opening stage of the Confederations Cup last year, the National Stadium in Brasilia will receive more games in the World Cup, with seven games in total, the same as Rio’s Maracanã. The first game will see Group E’s Switzerland play Ecuador on Sunday 15 June. The second game on the Brasília pitch is Group C: Colombia, dueling Ivory Coast on 19 June. The city’s most awaited match is scheduled for 23 June, when Brazil, seeded in Group A, will face the Cameroon, with a win ensuring early classification. The city will also host the close of the group stage with the game between Portugal and Ghana of Group D on 26 June. Other matches in Brasilia will be some of the quarter-finals on 30 June and 5 July followed finally with the match for third place, on 12 July.

Unfortunately, previous matches at the Mane Garrincha have seen serious clashes between fans. At the duel between Corinthians and Vasco, some supporters clashed in the stands, leading to panic amongst families who had young children. Confusion in the seating arrangements meant that Corinthians and Vasco fans were seated in close proximity, leading to hostility and fights that marred the game. Chaos ensued with even casual fans who’d come to enjoy the game getting caught up in clashes between the police and Corinthians’ supporters. Parents tried to protect their children and frightened elderly fans also panicked to try and escape. Some officers were attacked by supporters and many fought back with batons and stun guns. One of the officers took a shot in the eye and was not helped by the crowd, going on to lament the lack of care of different fans. In a previous game, a gang of São Paulo beat a Flamengo supporter at the stadium. He ended up hospitalised with a fractured jaw, wrose still justice was not delivered, the São Paulo supporters were arrested but released on the next day.


At the close of 2013, a conspiracy of political persecution unfolded. On Monday 9 December 2013, Gustavo Petro, Mayor of Bogota, capital of Colombia was deposed and labelled as unfit to hold public office by the General Attorney of the Nation, Alejandro Ordoñez. The reason: alleged flaws in the implementation of a new model of refuse collection. What happened, really, is that the Mayor broke up the market of rubbish collection, which had been monopolised by a corrupt cartel of four businessmen who held the grant of the service and who are accused of stealing 500 billion pesos over ten years. To address this, Petro had put into operation a public fleet of trash compactors, reducing cartel’s market, in addition to investigating the prices charged by these criminal entrepreneurs. Former part of the guerrilla movement M-19, Petro came to his tenure at City Hall in a historic result after a long battle against rampant corruption in public management of the district. Over the last decade, the cartels of corruption, with strong political alliances within the Council of Bogotá, to the point Petro’s mayoral predecessor was arrested after complaints and investigations undertaken. This gave him great enemies within the groups of illicit millionaires. As an ex-guerrilla and leftist politician, Petro has frequently been the subject of political conspiracies. The latest action against him foes not seek to eliminate him entirely, as was the case for over 4,000 leftist activists in the last three decades, but to eliminate it as a political subject. The dismissal of Petro follows, the historical necessity of the Colombian ruling class to remove leftist leaders or the politicians who fight corruption from the electoral battle. It has

CONECTANDO been a repeating trend across Colombia’s political history. It is not only about ending Petro: it is done in order to put an end to the dream that the left can finally rule the country and then, finally reach peace with the armed guerrilla movements. To any observer it is clearly unacceptable to dismiss a politician who is actively cleaning up the corruption of city hall, while senators maintain links with paramilitaries and councillors that act on the behalf of corrupted cartels do not receive any penalty by the Prosecutor. This has also meant that the lawyers counselling Juan Manuel Santos, President Colombia, have advised him to take distance from the case. Paradoxically, since Petro’s dismissal there has been an unexpected citizen mobilization in support of the mayor and huge disbelief regarding the role of the Prosecutor. The actions of prosecutor Alejandro Ordoñez, who identifies with extremist positions on respect to women’s reproductive rights and gay marriage have been met by public criticism. Political turmoil ensues in the country as this issue and the results of this dismissal will continue to effect the Colombian political chessboard. It has also awoken a mobilization that, on the one hand affects the stability of the legal and political institutions, and on the other aligns different strands of left and progressive movements, tired of the high levels of corruption and impunity installed in public services and Colombian politics. The scope of this political turmoil as it can be strongly argued that the removal of Petro was a way to fight back against the penal sanctions he applied to corrupt members of public administration board. Some journalists in the official newspaper El Tiempo are already speaking of a plan to

sabotage promoted by former President Álvaro Uribe Vélez, of the peace dialogues between the Colombian government and the FARC that are currently being conducted in Havana, Cuba. However, it is unsafe to state this as there is a serious risk of facing allegations of libel and slander against those who are denouncing the plot. It is also dangerous because in Colombia there is a history of murder and persecution to those who support the left. In public opinion, the dismissal of Petro created an unusual consensus that the decision of the prosecutor Alejandro Ordoñez was not a legal or a legitimate disciplinary action, as he argued, but a clear political and ideological decision. The way the prosecutor pre-judged the case and instant decision further trampled the legal, highlighting that there is a serious problem on the design of legal, political and constitutional institutions in the country. This case shows a gross lack of transparency in the limits and scope of the attorney, that clashes with the Supervisory and Administrative District Court. The fact is that Petro’s establishment of the new model of rubbish collection followed the mandate of the Constitutional Court in order to protect the Welfare State in giving preference to the rights of thousands of workers over the four private companies. The subsequent actions against Petro further indicate political persecution and even a coup. The recent intervention in the case by the Inter-American Human Rights Commission is timely and fair, because such actions violate political rights not only of Gustavo Petro, but also of all the citizens who elected him.

HOW TO PARTICIPATE ? Conectando is a project developed by the Brasil Observer that aims to put into practice the concept of ‘glocal’ communication, helping a local story find a global audience of readers. You can be involved too, just send your story to us! Find out how to get involved by contacting


Picture: Reprodution

Gustavo Petro, the now deposed major of Bogotá 15

Brasil Observer

GUIDE THE SOUNDS AND COLOURS OF BRAZIL A new book and album focused on Brazilian music and culture shows the country in a completely new light – and stays as far away as possible from the usual stereotypes and clichés. >> Read more on pages 16 and 17

Novo livro e CD focados na cultura e música brasileira mostram o país de uma perspectiva diferente, ficando o mais longe possível de todos os clichês e estereótipos que nos cercam. >> Leia mais nas páginas 16 e 17

foto divulagação



Book and album explore Brazil’s cultural diversity By Antonio Veiga

The understanding of a country and its culture usually starts in our imagination. Films, music and books help to build these images of other places and people, but undeniably it is difficult to escape the stereotypes that they can generate. Each country is haunted by various prejudices – anything made in Italian is expensive, German’s are methodical, that the Japanese are always polite and that the Irish start drinking at the breakfast to name a few. Any Brazilian who has met, let alone lived with foreigners at home or abroad, soon realises the reach of the stereotypes that precede our country. To the “gringos”, if you were born in Brazil, you have to like Carnival, samba and football. If you happen to be a Brazilian woman then you can add a hot body and confident sexuality to this, with many reports of women who feel hey are viewed as a piece of meat because sexual fantasies are constantly applied to them. On a more positive note, thanks to figures such as Tom Jobim, João Gilberto and Dorival Caymmi, and others, Brazil has become synonymous with good music. Bossa Nova and the Brazilian guitar sound conquered the planet, helping to build the image and sounds of Brazil, though it’s important to remember that observing a culture only based on clichés (even the good ones) is a shallow and superficial mistake.

Photo: Rômulo Seitenfus

Metá Metá

In the case of Brazil, considering the county’s size and cultural diversity, the lack of understanding generated by popular stereotypes is even more pronounced. It was with the desire to enhance the awareness of Brazil’s sounds, colours, tastes and beliefs that British journalist Russell Slater decided to develop the book and album Sounds and Colours Brazil. Setting out to delve deeper into the vast melting pot of Brazilian popular culture, Slater has complied a series of articles by researchers, journalists and authors. “Sounds and Colours Brazil” is an anthology of things that catch the eye and echo in the ears of those who know and understand Brazil. With 200 pages featuring articles on new sounds, traditional celebrations and emerging trends, the book will help many who want to expand their knowledge of Brazil. During the process, Slater felt that words alone would not manage to describe everything being explored, to address this, the text is accompanied by many photographs, illustrations, and a CD, so that the reader can listen along. This means that new topics such as Carimbó, the indigenous dance that emerged around Belém, capital of Pará State, can be better explained and appreciated. According to the creators, selecting the music for the album was one of the processes that occupied the most time and demanded attention. Throughout the publication and CD, themes emerge from the urgency of hip-hop and TecnoBrega, to travels through sounds that result from Brazil’s moving story of migration such as jongo and afrobeat. Incredibly well known musical figures, including the King of Baiao - Luiz Gonzaga, also feature, carnival also makes an appearance, though it’s plurality such at events in Recife, along with lesser known styles like maracatu, frevo and ciranda are discussed, rather than focussing on Rio.

Photo: Divulgation

The book travels from north to south and old to new Brazil, to show that Bossa Nova is just the tip of the iceberg to a very rich and diverse musical culture. You’d be wrong to think that the project is “limited” to music, major festivals and popular culture, to celebrate the contrast between regions and eras, Sounds and Colours Brazil also looks at the country’s visual arts, literature and national cinema. This Brazilian edition is the second one of Slater’s “Sounds and Colours” series, the first project covered Colombian culture and eventually he hopes to showcase each corner of South America. According to the website: “Sounds and Colours began as a means of promoting South American music and culture. We felt that Latin American culture was often shown through a narrow lens, missing much of the diversity that makes it such a rich culture. Our aim from day one has been to show all sides of South American culture, especially those that have been under-represented in the past”. The website is also an important space for the Sounds and Colours project, where you can find a lot of content about Brazil’s culture and even buy a copy of the book! Go there:

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Os Nelsons

Livro e álbum exploram diversidade cultural do Brasil Por Antonio Veiga

A compreensão de um país e sua cultura, geralmente, inicia-se dentro de nosso imaginário. Filmes, músicas e livros colaboram e muito para a construção desta imagem do que é o outro. Mas, inegavelmente, não há muito como escapar dos estereótipos. Aquele senso comum que beira o preconceito e supõe que o italiano é expansivo, que o alemão é quadrado, que o japonês é educado e que o irlandês começa a beber no café da manhã. Ao conhecer um estrangeiro, seja como hóspede ou visitante, o brasileiro percebe a dimensão do estereótipo criado em cima de si. Para o gringo, se você nasceu no Brasil, você, necessariamente, gosta de carnaval, samba e futebol; é bem-humorado e, também, malandro. No caso das mulheres, se adiciona a sexualidade. Muitos são os relatos de garotas que acreditam ser vistas como um pedaço de carne, tamanha fantasiada criada em cima da mulher brasileira. Graças a figuras como Tom Jobim, João Gilberto e Dorival Caymmi, entre outros, o Brasil tornou-se sinônimo de boa música mundo afora. A Bossa Nova e a sonoridade do violão brasileiro conquistaram o planeta e venderam muito bem o nosso peixe, ajudando na construção da imagem – e do som – do Brasil. No entanto, observar uma cultura somente em cima de seus clichês não é somente um erro: é raso, superficial. No caso do Brasil, considerando o seu tamanho e a sua diversidade cultural, isso fica ainda mais acentuado. E foi o desejo de aprimorar o

Photo: Divulgation

Orquestra Contemporânea de Olinda

olhar sobre a salada brasileira de sons, cores, sabores e crenças que levou o britânico Russel Slater a desenvolver Sounds and Colours Brazil. Para ir mais a fundo na ebulição da diversa cultura popular brasileira, Slater reuniu uma série de textos de pesquisadores, jornalistas e escritores. Praticamente uma antologia do que salta aos olhos e fascina os ouvidos de quem conhece o país sul-americano. São 200 páginas com artigos sobre assuntos, ritmos, celebrações tradicionais e novas tendências, que vão ajudar muito quem admira o Brasil a se atualizar e compreender ainda mais seus detalhes. Como as palavras, mesmo com todo o seu alcance, não são capazes de descrever tudo, o livro está repleto de fotografias e ilustrações, e vem acompanhado de um CD, para que o leitor, instantes após ter o interesse despertado pela leitura, possa escutar o que é o Carimbó, por exemplo. A dança indígena que despontou nos arredores de Belém, capital do Pará, no norte do Brasil, é um dos assuntos que podemos encontrar em Sounds and Colours Brazil. A seleção musical foi, segundo os idealizadores, um dos processos que mais ocuparam o tempo e demandaram atenção. Tanto na escolha dos temas dos textos quanto na dos sons que foram para o disco. O projeto conta com ritmos que estão em evidência, como o hip-hop e o tecnobrega; e passeia por sonoridades que são resultados da miscigenação brasileira, como o jongo e o afrobeat. Também estão no livro músicos centenários, como o Rei do Baião, Luiz Gonzaga, além da pluralidade do carnaval de Recife e seus maracatus, frevos, cirandas, bonecos e adereços. Enfim, vai de norte a sul, do antigo ao novo, no intuito de mostrar que a Bossa Nova é só a ponta do iceberg

Photo: Divulgation

de uma cultura musical bastante rica e diversa. Engana-se, porém, quem pensa que o projeto “limita-se” à música, às festas tradicionais e à cultura popular. Com a mesma intenção de mostrar o contraste entre regiões e épocas, Sounds and Colours Brazil pinça também a arte, a literatura e o cinema nacional. A edição brasileira é a segunda de Sounds and Colours, que já viajou pela cultura colombiana e pretende colocar em evidência um pouco de cada cantinho da América do Sul. “Sons e Cores começou a fim de promover a música e a cultura sul-americana. Nós sentimos que a cultura latino-americana foi muitas vezes mostrada através de uma lente estreita, perdendo muito da diversidade que a torna tão rica. O nosso objetivo desde o primeiro dia foi mostrar todos os lados da cultura sul-americana, especialmente aqueles que foram sub-representadas no passado”, descrevem os organizadores no site. A plataforma, aliás, é um espaço importante do projeto Sounds and Colours, onde o internauta pode encontrar muitos conteúdos sobre a cultura do continente e inclusive comprar um exemplar do livro. Vai lá:



It’s time to share what I know about Brazil

Photo: Léo Corrêa / Arquivo Secom

Taking advantage of Tirando vantagem this importan year deste importante ano Por Shaun Cumming

By Shaun Cumming The big year for Brazil has arrived and, in the next few months every Brazilian will be praying that the Selecao stars remain fit and healthy for the World Cup. One of the players I think will be key to success of Brazil is David Luiz. Luiz has earned respect from supporters of both his club Chelsea in London, and of Brazil, by putting in determined and passionate performances. He has been so important to both sides’ success; for example, at the Confederations Cup last year, his goal line clearance in the final against Spain at the Maracana, I believe, was the moment that killed Spain’s enthusiasm and led to Brazil’s triumph. Luiz is eccentric in appearance and playing style, and that’s not a bad thing. Toweringly tall and with a mad bush of hair, his personality booms out every time he plays football, every time he posts to social media networks,

and when he interviews with the media. On the pitch, his style can be equally eccentric. As a full back, he is always prone to moments of madness, but is solid nonetheless. He is a natural leader, always encouraging younger players – often allowing them to shine above him. It has been argued that his talents are wasted in central defence, and that he should actually play in central midfield. Perhaps so, but neither of his managers seems keen. I’d argue that David Luiz is as important a player to Brazil’s World Cup as Neymar is. During performances of the last year; every time David Luiz has been in the mood, has played with passion, Brazil has generally been successful. If Brazil is to do well in tournament, David Luiz needs to be playing and needs to be at his eccentric best. Whether or not the national team succeeds

on the field, there is an enormous opportunity for Brazil to take advantage of the attention of the world. Of course, many are unhappy at the expense when public services are so poor and corruption still widespread, and so they should be. I just hope people can channel this energy into something meaningful that leads to change. I have decided to share everything I know about Brazil in this important year in two ways. First is something I’ve been working on for several years. I’ve wrote a book based on the true story of one gringo in Brazil – you’ll find out more about that soon, but it will be of interest to everyone who knows or likes Brazil. Second is more immediate – I’ll be blogging regularly at www.thebrazilblog. com. Please make sure to come on to my blog and leave some comments.

O grande ano do Brasil chegou. E nos próximos meses todos os brasileiros estarão rezando para que as estrelas da Seleção Brasileira continuem em forma e saudáveis para a Copa do Mundo. Um dos jogadores que eu acredito ser a chave do sucesso para o Brasil é David Luiz. O zagueiro conquistou o respeito dos torcedores do Chelsea e da Seleção graças à determinação e paixão de suas performances. Ele tem sido muito importante para o sucesso dos dois times; na Copa das Confederações do ano passado, por exemplo, o zagueiro salvou uma bola em cima da linha na final contra a Espanha no Maracanã que, em minha opinião, foi o lance que matou o entusiasmo dos espanhois e levou o Brasil ao título. Luiz é excêntrico tanto em sua aparência quanto em seu estilo de jogo – e isso não é uma coisa ruim. Alto, meio desen-

gonçado e com um cabelo nada menos que chamativo, Luiz expõe grande personalidade toda vez que joga futebol, a cada postagem nas redes sociais e em cada entrevista que concede a jornalistas. Dentro das quatro linhas, seu estilo pode ser igualmente excêntrico. Como zagueiro central, tem sempre momentos de loucura, mas bastante sólidos. Ele é um líder natural, sempre encorajando jovens jogadores – frequentemente fazendo estes brilharem. Há quem diga que seu talento está sendo desperdiçado como zagueiro, e que ele poderia jogar no meio-de-campo. Talvez sim, mas nenhum de seus treinadores quer apostar nisso. Eu diria que David Luiz é tão importante para o Brasil na Copa do Mundo quanto Neymar. No ano passado, toda vez que Luiz jogou bem, a Seleção Brasileira saiu vitoriosa. Para o Brasil se dar bem no Mundial,

David precisa estar em seu melhor. Sendo a Seleção campeã mundial pela sexta vez ou não, há uma enorme oportunidade para o Brasil tirar vantagem da atenção que receberá do mundo. Evidentemente, muitos estão insatisfeitos com os gastos enormes e os persistentes problemas do setor público – e devem estar mesmo. Só espero que toda essa energia possa ser canalizada para algo significativo que leve a uma mudança. Eu decidi compartilhar tudo que sei sobre o Brasil neste importante ano de duas maneiras. A primeira é algo em que venho trabalhando há tempos – um livro baseado na história real de um gringo no Brasil, sobre o qual trarei mais novidades em breve. A segunda é mais imediata – um blog onde postarei regularmente: Te vejo lá? 19

NINETEEN EIGHT-FOUR The wolf pack’s back By Ricardo Somera

No, they haven’t decided to film “Hangover 4” - yet. The pack I’m referring to is the duo of Leonardo DiCaprio and Martin Scorsese along with their regular collaborators and excellent actors - Jonah Hill, Matthew McConaughey, Jean Dujardin in “The Wolf of Wall Street”, one of the best films of the year. An yes, I know we’re still in January! Not since DiCaprio and Scorsese’s “The Departed”, have I left the cinema feeling so thrilled about a movie. The latest masterpiece is based on the life of Jordan Belfort, from his rise to wealthy stockbroker living the high life to his fall involving crime, corruption and the federal government. Like any good film on the greed and depravity of the super rich, the the movie has glittering parties to match “The Great Gatsby”, the

opulence last seen in “Boogie Nights” and the nihilistic greed of “Wall Street”. “The Wolf” as it’s already becoming affectionately known, is also enjoying success in major film awards. DiCaprio won the Golden Globe for best actor in a comedy or musical and the film has received five Academy Award nominations (including Best Movie). The story might not be telling us anything new: Belfort is a totally dishonest banker who’s addicted to sex, drugs and parties. While ‘friends’ who envy his lifestyle might surround him, all of them fail to realise that behind every many great fortunes is an even greater crime. Though it doesn’t matter that we’ve seen this story before, what matters is how it is told and in Scorsese’s hands this makes for a compelling tale. Now the stars - apart from Leonardo DiCaprio,

who has more than proven he is not just a pretty face, Jonah Hill also stands out, with his balance of comic and tragic characterisation that keeps us invested in him. Matthew McConaughey, seen here unusually skinny (albeit not as gaunt as his role in “Dallas Buyers Club”), ugly and almost unrecognisable, in the role of “instructor” to the drugs and orgies Belfort consumes. The film has grossed over US$ 150 million worldwide and promises to accumulate even more after the Academy Awards in March. There’s no way you can see this movie and not want to join the wolf pack, even if it is only for the three hours of the film’s duration. This is a perfect means of escapism and just like the “ludes” (methaqualone) enjoyed by Belfort and his entourage: “it makes you feel wonderful, and doesn’t leave you with a hangover the next day.”

Photo: Divulgation Leonardo DiCaprio more than a pretty face

A alcateia está de volta Por Ricardo Somera

Não, ainda não inventaram de filmar “Se Beber Não Case 4”. Quem voltou foi a dupla Leonardo DiCaprio e Martin Scorsese – mais sua turma de excelentes atores (Jonah Hill, Matthew McConaughey, Jean Dujardin) – em “O Lobo de Wall Street” (“The Wolf of Wall Street”), um dos filmes mais incríveis do ano (eu sei que ainda estamos em janeiro!). Desde “Os Infiltrados” (“The Departed”), também da dupla DiCaprio e Scorsese, não saia da sala de cinema tão animado, excitado e entusiasmado com um filme. A obra prima conta a história baseada na vida de Jordan Belfort, um corretor de títulos e ações de Nova York que dirige uma firma, a Stratton Oakmont, que praticava fraudes de seguro e corrupção em Wall Street na década de 1990. É uma mistura de festas de “O Grande Gats-

by” (“The Great Gatsby”), putaria de “Boogie Nights” e o mundo de “Wall Street – Poder e Cobiça” (“Wall Street”). “O Lobo” também está fazendo sucesso nas principais premiações do cinema. Leo ganhou o Globo de Ouro de melhor ator em comédia ou musical e o filme recebeu cinco indicações para o Oscar (incluindo melhor filme). A história não é novidade: um trapaceiro, com muito dinheiro, viciado em sexo e drogas, cercado de festas e amigos; todos invejam o seu “life style” e todos esquecem por um momento que por trás de toda grande fortuna há um crime, normalmente um proporcional ao outro. E também não importa se a história é a mesma, o que importa é como ela é contada – e Scorsese sabe contar ótimas histórias desde sempre. Agora vamos às estrelas... Além de Leonardo

DiCaprio, que tem provado que não é só um rostinho bonito, outro ator que chama a atenção é Jonah Hill. Há tempos ele tenta mesclar seus filmes pastelões com ótimos e bons papéis, como em “Superbad” e “Moneyball”. Matthew McConaughey, magro, feio e quase irreconhecível, faz uma ponta importante como “instrutor” de drogas e orgias de Belfort. O filme já arrecadou mais de US$ 150 milhões em todo o mundo e promete acumular ainda mais após vencer os prêmios do Oscar em março. Não tem como ver o filme e não querer se juntar ao bando de lobos, nem que seja por apenas três boas horas. Pois são três horas com o efeito de “ludes” (Methaqualone): “they made you feel wonderful, yet didn’t leave you with a hangover the next day”.


Brasilia for all tastes

Photos: Divulgation

Brasília para todos os gostos

TRAVEL Brasilia is a city ahead of its time, her emergence has changed the landscape of the country, both in political and economic terms. Conceived by President Juscelino Kubitschek, planned by the talent of architect Lucio Costa and designed by the genius Oscar Niemeyer, the capital of Brazil was inaugurated in 1960. Monumental architecture and innovative urban design led to Brasilia being listed as a UNESCO Cultural Heritage Site in 1987. If you travel to Brasilia (and you really should), a good way to get to know the capital is the City Tour, which takes you passed the main monuments of the city: the Metropolitan Cathedral, the National Congress, the Presidential Palace, Alvorada Palace, Plaza of the Three Powers and JK Bridge. The tour can be

Congresso Nacional

Brasília é uma cidade à frente de seu tempo. Seu surgimento mudou o panorama do país, tanto político quanto econômico. Idealizada pelo presidente Juscelino Kubitschek, planejada pelo talentoso arquiteto Lucio Costa e desenhada pelo genial Oscar Niemeyer, a capital do Brasil foi inaugurada em 1960. Sua arquitetura monumental e seu traçado urbano inovador fizeram de Brasília Patrimônio Cultural da Humanidade, tombada pela UNESCO em 1987. Uma boa pedida para conhecer a capital brasileira é o City Tour que passa pelos principais monumentos da cidade: Catedral Metropolitana, Congresso Nacional, Palácio do Planalto, Palácio da Alvorada, Praça dos três poderes, Ponte JK. O passeio pode ser feito com os ônibus

taken in the newly deployed bus (R$ 25 per person) or in shared vans (R$ 80). If you want to see inside these modernist marvels, each monument offer excellent guided tours, especially the Alvorada and Planalto Palaces. The paintings, sculptures and furniture are breathtaking. For more information: http:// Amid the curves of Niemeyer’s buildings, there’s an amazing culinary culture that celebrates Brazil’s melting pot of nationalities. Cultural diversity is the main ingredient that flavors the menus and enriches the cooking. With representatives from around the world and all regions of Brazil, you can enjoy homemade food from Minas Gerais, traditional dishes from all of the country’s great regions,

Mato Grosso, Bahia, Rio de Janeiro, Espirito Santo, Amazonas and gaucho’s food from the plains. This forms a mosaic of flavors to please any taste. Make sure you go to the commercial district, 404/405 South, which offers so many options that is known as “restaurant’s street”, as well as the 201/202 South and 213/214 North. Other good options are in the Pontão do Lago Sul and the edge of the JK Bridge where you can enjoy the summer atmosphere of the Paranoá Lake with great alfresco dining.

Palácio do Planalto

estilo jardineira recém implantados (R$ 25 por pessoa) ou por vans compartilhadas (R$ 80). Além da vista externa dos monumentos, as visitas guiadas são imperdíveis, principalmente ao Palácio do Planalto e Palácio da Alvorada. As pinturas, esculturas e mobiliário são de tirar o fôlego. Mais informações: E em meio às curvas de Niemeyer, encontram-se cantinhos com culinária que desvenda as origens de vários povos. A diversidade cultural é o ingrediente principal que tempera os cardápios da cidade. Com representantes do mundo todo e de todas as regiões brasileiras, encontra-se uma pitada da caseira comida mineira, da típica comida baiana, carioca, mato-grossense, capixaba, amazonense, até

a tradicional comida gaúcha - formando assim um mosaico de sabores que agrada qualquer paladar. A dica é a comercial 404/405 Sul, que oferece tantas opções que é conhecida como “rua dos restaurantes”, assim como a 201/202 Sul e a 213/214 Norte. Também o Pontão do Lago Sul e a orla da Ponte JK, que unem o clima de verão do Lago Paranoá ao da boa comida. 21

ECO-TOURISM For those who enjoy nature, the state of Goiás, where Brasilia is located, offers a great variety of ecotourism options, with adequate infrastructure and native flora preserved. The National Park of Chapada dos Veadeiros (229 km away from the capital) is great for long walks followed by epic views of the park’s waterfalls, with some that are over 100 meters high, with hundreds of springs and watercourses. For more information, go to Finally, Pirenópolis (182 km from Brasilia) is a city that invites its visitors to know and immerse themselves with the city’s colonial buildings, rich gastronomy and natural beauty with many waterfalls.

Catedral Metropolitana

ECOTURISMO Para quem curte a natureza, o estado de Goiás – onde Brasília está localizada – oferece vasta opção de ecoturismo, com infraestrutura adequada e vegetação nativa preservada. O Parque Nacional da Chapada dos Veadeiros (229 km da capital) é ótimo para caminhadas e relaxar nas inúmeras cachoeiras - algumas com mais de 100 metros de altura -, e centenas de nascentes e cursos d’água. Para mais informações: Já Pirenópolis (182 km de Brasília) é uma cidade que convida seus visitantes a conhecer e interagir com suas construções coloniais, gastronomia e, também, numerosas cachoeiras.

Chapada dos Veadeiros






February 10 – 18, 2014

February 21, 2014

Where Embassy of Brazil / Tickets Free

Where 1 Richmond Rd / Tickets £5 before 10pm;


£8 after 10pm >>

London-based designers, Barbara Casasola (photo), Lucas Nascimento and Fernando Jorge, as well as two emerging talents from Brazil, Vitorino Campos and Guilherme Vieira, participate in Brazil’s inaugural International Fashion Showcase exhibit.

Supernatural tropical brass band the Voodoo Love Orchestra will be leading the Passing Clouds party in February, with the infectious Afro-Latin jams of Animanz and Movimientos DJs.

Egberto Gismont + RALPH TOWNER

Guida de Palma & JAZZINHO

February 27, 2014

February 28, 2014

ABC TRUST – DANCEATHON February 7, 2014 Where Hammersmith Club / Tickets £35 >>

With a unique voice full of sensuality and strength, De Palma says she is into many styles and does not limit herself to a very narrow genre. That, in essence, in Jazzinho, a bouncy and captivating release featuring De Palma’s awesome vocals and swing.

The ABC Trust Danceathon will feature a diverse range of Brazilian dance lessons, including Axé, Frevo, Carnival Samba, Gafiera, Forro and Coco. You can buy a ticket for £35 and take part in as many of the classes you like, or you can register for free and pledge to raise £100 to help thousands of children across Brazil.

Virtuoso pianist and guitarist, and a seminal figure in contemporary Brazilian culture, Egberto Gismonti is the composer of an extraordinary body of music, reflected in a long association with ECM Records. His charismatic solo performances meld uplifting, exuberant rhythms with heart-stopping melody.

Where Rich Mix / Tickets £18

Where Barbican Hall / Tickets from £35



“Desde 1992 servindo a Comunidade Brasileira”

Mudança segura e personalizada! Horário de Atendimento: Segunda a Sexta das 08:00h às 19:00h Sábados das 09:00h às 12:00h Escritórios em Portugal e Espanha: E-mail:

+44 (0)1895 420303 EE1 0660 PackAndGo_50x254mm_w_Portuguese_Local.indd 1

Mudança Doméstica e Internacional

Importação e Exportação de Frete Comercial

Serviço Aéreo, Marítimo e Rodoviário

Armazenagem e Empacotamento

Serviço Especializado para Antiguidades

Serviço Porta a Porta para qualquer lugar do Brasil

20 anos

Aniversário em 2012 – Vamos celebrar! Garantia do melhor preço. Entre em contato conosco para mais detalhes. 31/08/2012 23:05


Maddison, 19

Marissa, 29

Gong, 23

Weisha, 23

Zuza, 24



By Clarice Valente, Deise Fields and Bruja Leal

THE ARRIVAL OF THE WATER BEARER In mythology, Zeus (Jupiter) bestows the mortal Ganymede with the responsibility of serving the nectar of immortality to the gods of Olympus. According to mythology, the Waterman never tastes the nectar, instead any remaining liquid is poured on Earth to establish the spiritual connection between the two worlds and nurture their paths. Uranus - the planet of electrical conductivity, rules the Aquarius star sign. This gives people of this sign, who’s revolutionary characters are in a constant flux, their creative and abstract energy. In Greco-Roman mythology, Aquarius is not a mythological god, but a primordial planet, the heaven: a creative energy. He is father of Cronus (Saturn) and grandfather of Zeus. Those influenced by this sign tend to adapt to the world around them. With their expansive perception and creative intelligence, they might be considered eccentric and distracted. They also have the gift of helping others and the skills to calm hysterical people and frightened children. Some call them “geniuses” who live on a tenuous line between wisdom and folly as they contextualize the present reality with the possible future. The Aquarius Moon governs the period, which begins on 30th January, encouraging freedom and self-expression and desiring change. After this though, the Moon grows in the constellation of Taurus on the 6th February, symbolising the search for stability and satisfaction on Earth. The Full Moon passes through Leo on the 14th, focusing on ease for affection, expanding the possibility of even more creativity. The waning moon in Sagittarius, on the 22th bringing a sense of philosophy to past events. We all have an internal aquarium, even if it seems impossible for some. In this period, the wind of freedom blows, Aquarians and many of us will feel encouraged to face our challenges, and awaken our senses.

Sun and Moon arrive in the Aquarius Constellation: the archetypal carrier that chooses what it will hold until it overflows and renews, mirroring the cycles of nature.

É chegado Sol e Lua na constelação de Aquário: o arquétipo do portador do Jarro escolhe o que nele estará contido até transbordar e se renovar, como os ciclos da natureza. Esta leitura do céu acompanha as fases da Lua e o tempo entre Luas Novas. Cada lunação sofre influência de um signo regente e circunda as constelações zodiacais deste período. De 3 de Novembro ao dia 2 de Dezembro, a Lua desfila sobre a constelação de Escorpião. Escorpião é um signo intuitivo de água* e é regido por Plutão. O animal mora nas brechas e vive em alerta, característica que reverbera no signo. Sai quando acometido de desejo; é sedutor e desconfiado. O veneno de escorpião tem potência letal ou de cura. Neste sentido magnético, regenera ou intoxica. Como uma reação ao veneno, o período de sua regência é agitado pela busca da auto-renovação. O Escorpião motiva a negação das convenções sociais, a não-identificação que possibilita a transmutação em algo próprio de si. Lunação que motiva a criação de novos métodos. Seu período atual, pós-ápice da Lua cheia, está em Gêmeos – Razão e Aprendizado. Passará sobre Câncer – Sentimento e Estrutura. Na reflexão da minguância, Leão – Criatividade e Liderança o ajudará a encontrar saídas criativas para o período que segue para Virgem – Organização e Análise e que finaliza em Libra - Balança. Neste período, Venus passa pela constelação de capricórnio e não se dedica a devaneios líricos. Está de pés no chão em conversa com Plutão, regente de Escorpião. Estes astros em conjunção debatem racionalmente (Capricórnio) a pulsão e o desejo, do viver aos relacionamentos. Enfim, a Lua regressa à constelação de Escorpião e conclui seu ciclo na Lua Nova de Sagitário, no segundo dia de dezembro, período lunar que favorece escolhas regeneradoras, ingestão do caos ou da harmonia. Saia da toca. Arrisque e sinta.

A CHEGADA DO AGUADEIRO Por Clarice Valente, Deise Fields e Bruja Leal





For the Puree: Boil the pumpkin until soft, drain and mash. Squeeze out any excess liquid but retain this for later. Fry one onion and the garlic in butter and add the pumpkin, stirring well. Season with salt, pepper and a small sprinkle of fresh herbs then stir in the cream cheese and heat through, making sure it doesn’t stick to the bottom of pan. Prawns: Fry the other onion and garlic in olive oil and add the prawns. Add the saffron, remaining parsley, chives, salt and pepper and cook until the prawns are just cooked. Mix gently to avoid breaking up the prawns, remove from the heat and stir in the remaining cream cheese. Using either individual ramekins or in a larger oven-proof dish, start with a layer of pumpkin puree, top with prawns, cover with grated pecorino cheese then top with another layer of puree. To finish, sprinkle Parmesan cheese on the top and place it in a moderate oven (180ºC) until golden brown. Serve with a crisp green salad and lots of crusty bread.

Purê: Cozinhe a abóbora até ficar mole ao ponto de amassar no espremedor de batatas. Esprema e reserve. Refogue uma das cebolas e o alho na manteiga e junte à abóbora, mexendo bem. Coloque o sal, a salsa, a cebolinha, o queijo cremoso e misture até levantar fervura, para não pegar no fundo. Reserve. Camarão: Refogue a outra cebola e o alho no azeite e acrescente os camarões. Acrescente o açafrão, a salsa, a cebolinha, o sal e a pimenta e deixe a água que irá sair dos camarões secar. Misture com cuidado para não desmanchá-los. Desligue o fogo, coloque o queijo cremoso e misture. Montagem: Em potes de porcelana ou outro material que possa ir ao forno, coloque uma camada do purê de abóbora, camarões a gosto, cubra com o queijo pecorino ralado e coloque mais uma camada do purê. Para finalizar, salpique queijo parmesão por cima e, após montado, coloque em forno médio (180ºC) até o queijo parmesão dourar.

Ingredients 1,5 kg of pumpkin/squash cut into 1-inch cubes 2 medium onions, finely diced 2 cloves of garlic, crushed 200g cream cheese (for the sauce) 2 tablespoons butter 2 kg of medium-sized raw prawns, shelled and de-veined 2 tablespoons olive oil 300g of cream cheese (for the shrimp) 1 tablespoon saffron or curry powder Parsley and chives to taste, finely chopped Salt and pepper to taste 400g of grated pecorino cheese 200g of grated Parmesan cheese 25

Ingredientes 1,5 kg de abóbora 2 cebolas médias 2 dentes de alho 200g de queijo cremoso (para o purê) 2 colheres (sopa) de manteiga 2 kg de camarão médio 2 colheres (sopa) de azeite 300g de queijo cremoso (para o camarão ) 1 colher (sobremesa) de açafrão ou curry Salsa e cebolinha a gosto Sal e pimenta a gosto 400g de queijo pecorino ralado 200g de queijo parmesão ralado

By Luciane Sorrino

Brasil Observer #004 English Version  

The opening of the long awaited World Cup in Brazil is just around the corner.

Brasil Observer #004 English Version  

The opening of the long awaited World Cup in Brazil is just around the corner.