Essay " Rural Maracatu in Pernambuco’s Carnival "


The Caboclo de Lança (spear caboclo) are the warriors of Ogum. Descendants of slaves. They dress with luxury and shine during Carnival days in the small city of Nazaré da Mata.

Their delicate collars are embroidered with Portuguese tiles. Each colored cellophane wig glows in the sun and antecipate their spiritual guide (yellow: Oxum, blue: Oxóssi, red: Xangô). The spear reinforces their warrior nature. They carry bells, big and heavy, with the sound of the machetes of the cane cutters.

This almost mythical figure is the main character of the Maracatu do Baque Solto, also known as Maracatu Rural (a festival that was born in the interior of Pernambuco and has a very close relationship with the sugarcane culture and the African origins of the people).

His sambada is engaging and enchanting: full of jumps, twists, falls and bumps. Dancing and playing in a costume that weighs about 30kg is always a huge challenge, but at the same time, a proof of the great capacity of overcoming of this warrior people.

The pride of playing as a caboclo is passed down from generation to generation: proof of the resistance (physical and cultural) that keeps the party so active and vibrant.

São Paulo - Brasil