Photos: Rio de Janeiro pines for its Covid-cancelled carnival

  • Rio de Janeiro would normally be kicking off its famed carnival now, but instead of booming drumlines, glittering floats and barely clad dancers, the Brazilian city's "Sambadrome" is hosting a Covid-19 vaccination drive this year. The pandemic forced Rio authorities to cancel carnival for the first time in 109 years, leaving the iconic beach city full of "saudades" -- a Portuguese word that roughly translates as "longing" -- for its biggest party of the year.
UPDATED ON FEB 14, 2021 03:48 PM IST 10 Photos
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Anilson Costa, a reveller of the annual block party "Ceu na Terra", walks along the Santa Teresa neighborhood where the block party used to be celebrated, as Carnival celebrations have been canceled, amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on February 12.(Pilar Olivares / REUTERS)

Anilson Costa, a reveller of the annual block party "Ceu na Terra", walks along the Santa Teresa neighborhood where the block party used to be celebrated, as Carnival celebrations have been canceled, amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on February 12.(Pilar Olivares / REUTERS)

UPDATED ON FEB 14, 2021 03:48 PM IST
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Caretaker Walel looks at parts of carnival floats from last year at samba school Imperio di Tijaca's warehouse, exactly opposite of the Sambadrome venue in Rio de Janeiro on February 13. The cancellation has left the small armies of costume designers, mechanics, choreographers, dancers and others who usually prepare the sumptuous carnival parades, out of work.(Carl De Souza / AFP)

Caretaker Walel looks at parts of carnival floats from last year at samba school Imperio di Tijaca's warehouse, exactly opposite of the Sambadrome venue in Rio de Janeiro on February 13. The cancellation has left the small armies of costume designers, mechanics, choreographers, dancers and others who usually prepare the sumptuous carnival parades, out of work.(Carl De Souza / AFP)

UPDATED ON FEB 14, 2021 03:48 PM IST
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Marcus Vinicius Araujo, 25, wears a costume which he would have worn during the Carnival had it not been cancelled, in Rio de Janeiro on February 10. "It is a moment of understanding which we need to live. We are not celebrating Carnival now, but we are going to party from home, respecting the health security protocols and getting ready to come back on the next carnival with the usual happiness." Araujo told Reuters.(Ricardo Moraes / REUTERS)

Marcus Vinicius Araujo, 25, wears a costume which he would have worn during the Carnival had it not been cancelled, in Rio de Janeiro on February 10. "It is a moment of understanding which we need to live. We are not celebrating Carnival now, but we are going to party from home, respecting the health security protocols and getting ready to come back on the next carnival with the usual happiness." Araujo told Reuters.(Ricardo Moraes / REUTERS)

UPDATED ON FEB 14, 2021 03:48 PM IST
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A set of colored lights illuminates the Marques de Sapucai avenue, known as Passarela do Samba, in Rio de Janeiro on February 12. The light show was a homage to the samba schools of Rio de Janeiro that will not perform the carnival parade due to the Coronavirus pandemic.(Andre Coelho / AFP))

A set of colored lights illuminates the Marques de Sapucai avenue, known as Passarela do Samba, in Rio de Janeiro on February 12. The light show was a homage to the samba schools of Rio de Janeiro that will not perform the carnival parade due to the Coronavirus pandemic.(Andre Coelho / AFP))

UPDATED ON FEB 14, 2021 03:48 PM IST
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Actress Dandara Machado Abreu, 32, at home in her Carnival costume, in Rio de Janeiro on February 11. "Actually I haven't accepted that we won't have the carnival yet, I think it is so sad, all this process, the pandemic, culminating in not having Carnival makes the sadness even bigger" Abreu told Reuters.(Ricardo Moraes / REUTERS)

Actress Dandara Machado Abreu, 32, at home in her Carnival costume, in Rio de Janeiro on February 11. "Actually I haven't accepted that we won't have the carnival yet, I think it is so sad, all this process, the pandemic, culminating in not having Carnival makes the sadness even bigger" Abreu told Reuters.(Ricardo Moraes / REUTERS)

UPDATED ON FEB 14, 2021 03:48 PM IST
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The phrase "All For Vaccines" is seen on Sao Paulo's Sambadrome on February 13. City officials in Rio de Janeiro have also turned their venue into an impromptu vaccination center. Among the first to be vaccinated on February 13 was veteran samba composer Monarco, 87.(Amanda Perobelli / REUTERS)

The phrase "All For Vaccines" is seen on Sao Paulo's Sambadrome on February 13. City officials in Rio de Janeiro have also turned their venue into an impromptu vaccination center. Among the first to be vaccinated on February 13 was veteran samba composer Monarco, 87.(Amanda Perobelli / REUTERS)

UPDATED ON FEB 14, 2021 03:48 PM IST
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Paula Penteado and Reginaldo Pingo from Vai-Vai samba school dance on the phrase "All For Vaccines" written at Sao Paulo's Sambadrome, on February 13.(Amanda Perobelli / REUTERS)

Paula Penteado and Reginaldo Pingo from Vai-Vai samba school dance on the phrase "All For Vaccines" written at Sao Paulo's Sambadrome, on February 13.(Amanda Perobelli / REUTERS)

UPDATED ON FEB 14, 2021 03:48 PM IST
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Businessman Andre Basto, 35, at home in Rio de Janeiro wearing his Carnival costume on February 11. "The city will try a different way to live without the carnival, which is so unusual to a city like Rio de Janeiro. We are also so used to our problems and chaos and so much wrong things that it is going to be only one more problem to the city, and it is really sad." Basto told Reuters.(Ricardo Moraes / REUTERS)

Businessman Andre Basto, 35, at home in Rio de Janeiro wearing his Carnival costume on February 11. "The city will try a different way to live without the carnival, which is so unusual to a city like Rio de Janeiro. We are also so used to our problems and chaos and so much wrong things that it is going to be only one more problem to the city, and it is really sad." Basto told Reuters.(Ricardo Moraes / REUTERS)

UPDATED ON FEB 14, 2021 03:48 PM IST
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Teacher Juliana Motta, 34, with a family member while in a costume which she would have worn to this year’s Carnival celebrations in Rio de Janeiro, on February 9. "It is sad, but it's necessary, it is a necessary temporary evil, it hurts but it is transient" Motta told Reuters about not having Carnival celebrations.(Ricardo Moraes / REUTERS)

Teacher Juliana Motta, 34, with a family member while in a costume which she would have worn to this year’s Carnival celebrations in Rio de Janeiro, on February 9. "It is sad, but it's necessary, it is a necessary temporary evil, it hurts but it is transient" Motta told Reuters about not having Carnival celebrations.(Ricardo Moraes / REUTERS)

UPDATED ON FEB 14, 2021 03:48 PM IST
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Architect Helena Schmidt, 37, lounging in her Carnival costume in Rio de Janeiro on February 10. "It is a not ending sadness, we lose the happiness we have to move on all the year, without the carnival we lose the beauty, the child side of people. It is when we forget all the problems, so we miss something in the city without the Carnival", Schmidt said.(Ricardo Moraes / REUTERS)

Architect Helena Schmidt, 37, lounging in her Carnival costume in Rio de Janeiro on February 10. "It is a not ending sadness, we lose the happiness we have to move on all the year, without the carnival we lose the beauty, the child side of people. It is when we forget all the problems, so we miss something in the city without the Carnival", Schmidt said.(Ricardo Moraes / REUTERS)

UPDATED ON FEB 14, 2021 03:48 PM IST
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