Culture capital date for samba band

ONE of Suffolk's most colourful and entertaining dance and music acts is headed to Liverpool for an international event with a difference.

Grant Sherlock

ONE of Suffolk's most colourful and entertaining dance and music acts is headed to Liverpool for an international event with a difference.

The Suffolk School of Samba will be part of a 1,000 strong contingent taking part in a unique event to celebrate the city's year as European Capital of Culture.

The 50-strong group will perform as part of a street carnival which will see groups from Brazil, Holland, Ireland, Germany, Spain and Liverpool join them in parading through the city's streets.

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Among the performers, will be members of Mangueira, Rio de Janeiro's most famous Samba school. The presence of such world famous samba outfits has the Ipswich-based group excited.

Xris Kroger, events co-ordinator for Suffolk School of Samba, said: “It's going to be unbelievable. For us it's the biggest thing ever.”

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Suffolk School of Samba received the invitation from the organisers of the August 2 event nine months ago and has been planning its trip ever since.

The school's dancers have new head gear and weekly rehearsals have been going ahead with the trademark enthusiasm which has given the group a strong reputation around the county. Yesterday they held their last rehearsal before the big day.

They will travel to Liverpool by coach before taking part in what promises to be a gruelling street carnival.

“They are having for the first time ever a Rio style carnival with a sea of costumes, colour, floats and music,” Mrs Kroger, of Mansbrook Boulevard in the Ravenswood area of Ipswich, said.

“A thousand of us in a parade all doing the same thing - samba - but from different areas of Brazil will be fantastic.

“We start at 8.30pm with a 10pm finish. Then every single samba school has been invited to showcase themselves in the street in China Town.

“We will finish in the independence district and will be finished at 6am in true carnival style.

“Each samba band and group will be separated by a float big enough to separate the sounds.”

On their return from the Liverpool event, Suffolk School of Samba is hoping to increase its numbers and will be holding induction courses for both dancers and band members.

Anyone interested should call 01473 725527 or visit

Are you part of a group which is reaching new heights? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail

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