Marchas Populares ExhibitionPopular Festivities
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Ó-i-ó-ai, I’ve been to buy some basil
Ó-i-ó-ai, and now I’m off to the dance
And here I have a boy hanging
which really is a portrait of my boyfriend
Balãozinho, A Canção de Lisboa, 1933
With well-tuned voices and well-trained steps, groups from different Lisbon neighbourhoods make their way down the Avenida da Liberdade and the city gets all dressed up for what is the high point of the Festas de Lisboa. This year, Vasco Santana and the Canção de Lisboa (film) are the inspiration for the Grande Marcha (Big Parade): the song Vasco é Saudade promises to get the city rocking on the night of Santo António.
Hundreds of people, including costume designers, paraders, choreographers and musicians, work for months on a project that has its grand finale on the night of the 12th June. The Marchas Populares (Parades) are the ultimate symbol of the traditions and peoples of Lisbon’s different neighbourhoods, with the elders giving way to the youngsters in a renewal of traditions and a show of life and love that is celebrated each year.
This year, the neighbourhoods of Lumiar, São Domingos de Benfica and Bairro da Boavista return to the parade, while the Vila da Lousã Parade is the special guest.
Infantil “A Voz do Operário”, Olivais, Belém, Alcântara, Mouraria, Bica, Lumiar, Carnide, Alto do Pina
Mercados, Penha da França, Campo de Ourique, Benfica, Graça, Bela Flor – Campolide, Bairro da Boavista, Alfama, Bairro Alto
Santa Casa, Castelo, Ajuda, São Domingos de Benfica, Madragoa, Marvila, São Vicente, Santa Engrácia