News from Brazil

Brazil Weekly’s Brazil Culture & Regional News

In Brazil on March 16, 2012 at 11:48 am

PROJECT OF THE WEEK

Render of the Parque Burle Marx project for Belo Horizonte, featuring interesting solutions in intriguing landscaping (more pictures and info, in Portuguese).

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CULTURE

Brazilian pop singer Marisa Monte has long been a leading contemporary voice of Musica Popular Brasileira, a national pop super-genre that arose in the 1960s as a response to bossa nova. She continues that legacy on “O Que Voce Quer Saber de Verdade” — her first full album in six years, which will be released March 27 — with a collection of mostly original, largely safe tunes that neither rebuke nor substantially redefine her covetable standing in the world music arena (Washington Post).

FIFA WORLD CUP

Ricardo Teixeira, the controversial head of the Brazilian Football Confederation and the man charged with organising the 2014 World Cup, quit following a string of corruption scandals (Reuters).

The new head of Brazilian soccer took over, promising as few changes as possible despite an often controversial reign by predecessor Ricardo Teixeira. Career politician Jose Maria Marin praised the “stupendous” work of Teixeira, who stepped down Monday for health reasons after 23 years in charge (ESPN).

FIFA president Sepp Blatter will meet Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff to clear the air following the recent spat over preparations for the 2014 World Cup, soccer’s governing body said (MercoPress).

The mascot for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil will be an armadillo, according to a report on Sunday in the Brazilian weekly Veja. The Brazilian three-banded armadillo, native to the country’s north-east, is capable of rolling itself into the shape of a ball when it feels threatened (Football).

AMAZON

Rolling back forest protections would be the “exact wrong message to send to the world,” given the upcoming Rio+20 U.N. conference, said Riordan Roett, head of Latin American studies at Johns Hopkins University’s School for Advanced International Affairs in Washington D.C.  But Senator Katia Abreu, president of the Brazilian Confederation of Agriculture and Livestock, said in November that Brazil would lose about $100 billion in agricultural output if lawmakers fail to pass legislation that includes amnesty for farmers (Bloomberg).

The number of people whose houses face risks of flooding after the Belo Monte power plant is built is 55% higher than that estimated by the company in charge of the construction (Folha).

BRASILIA

UNESCO is deciding whether to put the Brazilian capital on its list of World Heritage sites in danger. A team of experts arrived in Brasilia for a four-day mission (Washington Post).

MINAS GERAIS

No wonder they call Bernardo Paz the “Emperor of Inhotim.” About 1,000 employees, including curators, botanists and concrete pourers, swarm around Inhotim, his contemporary-art complex in the hills of southeast Brazil. Globetrotting art pilgrims absorb stunning works like Doug Aitken’s “Sonic Pavilion,” which uses high-sensitivity microphones placed in a 633-foot hole to deliver the bass murmur of Earth’s inner depths (The New York Times).

RIO

The Bus Rapid System (BRS) was implemented on Avenida Presidente Vargas in Rio’s Centro district, initially causing crippling traffic congestion. This is the second BRS lane in Centro, the first was put in place last October along Avenida Rio Branco (The Rio Times).

Police are investigating allegations made by a young man who says he was tortured over the weekend by army soldiers patrolling a Rio de Janeiro slum. Inspector Jose Costa da Silva tells the O Globo newspaper there is “no doubt” that the 22-year-old man was “tortured” (Washington Post).

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SAO PAULO

Sao Paulo is the world’s fourth best city for investment, according to a study by KPMG. The city made the biggest leap on the list, to fourth, increasing investment by 160% over the past two years. Numbers 1 to 3 are London, Shanghai and Hongkong (BBC).

Juliana Dias, a biologist and researcher at the Sirio Libanes hospital in Sao Paulo, had been a cycling activist. Her death came just three years after another activist, Marcia Prado, was killed at almost the same spot. This time, hundreds of cyclists blocked Avenida Paulista in response and across the country — in cities as far apart as Manaus, Belo Horizonte and Rio de Janeiro — cyclists threw themselves on the ground to symbolize the deaths, lit candles and sang songs (Bloomberg).

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