Copyright (c) 2008 Andre Skowronski
During Brazil’s Carnival, one of the most disputed (and sometimes controversial) unofficial contests is deciding who was the “ultimate muse”, after the four-day party holiday is over. Brazilians, international press, and publicity agencies, reflect upon who was the most dazzling drum queen or parading muse in Rio’s Sambadrome. There is no official title for this informal contest, but national media always try to elect Carnival model number 1. Many criticize this “new” beauty frenzy. People question why does this vibrant contest even exist? Is it a sin to be a muse in the Brazilian Carnival? Is it there any problem in being attractive, sensual or graceful? This is main topic of this article.
Celebrities, actresses, models are usually selected and the top Brazilian beauty during the Carnival holidays. Carnival muses are extremely well paid by the publicity market and pampered by top samba schools. The beer, retail, cosmetics and fashion industry are some of segments that constantly rely on Brazilian models to support their brands. Actresses, celebrities, and performers legitimately see carnival as an opportunity to cash in the investment they have made along their carrier in their mythical attributes. Many of them enhance their media visibility in the samba parade, while being evaluated for movie and TV soap operas casts and TV shows. Nothing wrong with that! Although we have seen some infuriated perspectives, beauty has its decisive place when appropriately shown.
A famous quote by “The girl of Ipanema” songwriter Vinicius de Moraes says: “The ugly will pardon me, but beauty is fundamental,”. Nothing new since “Beauty is truth, truth is beauty” from Keats “Ode on a Grecian Urn”.
Amanda Fran?o – model and talk show presenter
Juliana Paes – Model and Movie Actress
Sabrina Sato – model, TV presenter and comedian
Graziella Massafera – model and TV actress
Natalia Guimar? – Miss Brazil
Mirella Santos – model and dancer
Gracyanne Barbosa – Model and Mangueira Drum Queen
Paola Oliveira – TV Actress and Model
All of these beauties reached the limelight in Brazil (and abroad) not only because of their natural gifts, provided by genes, sweat and tears. They have true talents such as representing, dancing, modeling and other artistic expressions. Beauty alone is incapable of lending more than the Andy Warhol’s original 15 minutes of fame. Muses have much more to offer in their souls than symmetric lines and sensual poses.
I leave you to make the final call who is the ultimate carnival muse in 2008. The important point to notice is that most of these muses deliver wonder and magic to earth largest popular show, which is the Brazilian Carnival. I believe Brazilian women are authentic in every aspect of their vibrant personalities. Brazilian Carnival is obviously much more than this. (In the collective unconscious abroad, Brazilian carnival is sometimes linked to nudity).
Brazilian women are indeed magically esthetically gifted, and again, I personally think there is nothing wrong with that. Beauty has been worshiped since the Greeks, Romans, and even before, when our ancestors walked the African plains. Many evolutionary psychologists point out today that back in the pleistocene days, beauty was an important fitness indicator. In essence, the beauty debate is a much more complex issue than a simple dichotomist approach can imagine.
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