RIO DE JANEIRO —
Not everything about the World Cup revolves around football.
Sometimes an event like this can bring an extra bit of excitement to a host nation, and in Rio de Janeiro flash mobs are erupting spontaneously, to the delight of locals.
Parque Madureira is a quiet park about an hour away from Rio's touristy beach spots. And Praça XV, in the center of Rio, is a place where locals arrive by ferry from Niteroi, across the bay, to start the work day.
The Brazilian Ministry of Culture has organized five-to-ten-minute long flash mobs in each location. They are performed mostly for local citizens, not the tourists that have overtaken their city during the World Cup.
“Big Dance Brazil” flash mobs will take place in all twelve cities hosting World Cup matches.
According to choreographer Carlinhos de Jesus, dance is the best way to unite Brazilians.
“This is a big country. Each region has its own choreographic characteristics. This is in our music, our history, and is part of our DNA…not just because of our African roots, or our Indian origins in which dance was the first way of communication but also because of its expressiveness and its gestures,” de Jesus said.
Just as quickly as they start, the flash mobs end. The people who were there to witness them go on about the rest of their day - though hopefully, with a little more pride in their country and a song in their heart.