VIDEO: Samba spirit in Sheffield as World Cup kicks off

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Brazilian beats took over the streets of Sheffield at a carnival held to kick off the World Cup in style.

Sheffield Samba Band performers were dressed in colourful pink costumes to give West Street and Division Street a flavour of Rio de Janeiro.

Football fans took a break from the first match of the contest, Brazil versus Croatia, to enjoy the spectacular dance along in the city centre.

Brazilians Maria Rodrigues and Sonia Buckland, who now live in Sheffield, joined the celebrations dressed in the bright colours of their home country.

Sonia, who even had on green and yellow earrings, said: “I love that the World Cup is in Brazil. We are here to watch the game and we will win.”

Maria added: “The overall winner will be Germany or Brazil.”

Samba is recognised around the world as part of Brazilian culture - but Sheffield’s very own band began as part of political movements over the Iraq war.

Charlie Illingworth, leader of the Broomhall-based band, said: “Samba seems to be everywhere at the moment, you can’t turn on the television or radio without hearing it.

“Tonight was about bringing a bit of the culture and the music of Brazil to Sheffield, as well as the football that everyone will be watching

“We wore our pink costumes we like to get our boys in pink.

He added: “They tend to dress down in Brazil but we dress up here!”

The mini carnival was organised by West Street bar the Locker Room - one of many Sheffield pubs which is pulling out all the stops for the beautiful games’s biggest tournament.

A themed menu was also launched at the bar last night as well as an eight foot television and 34 screen in all to watch the match on.

James Edwards, PR and marketing spokesman, said: “We just wanted to do something a bit different.

“Every time the World Cup is on you see pubs with England flags out but we didn’t want to just do that.

“We wanted to give people the chance to enjoy a little bit of that Brazilian spirit as well as watching the first match.”

The Sheffield Samba Band will also be performing before the game between Spain and the Netherlands tomorrow night.




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