Frevo added to UNECSO’s cultural heritage list


UNESCO has added frevo to its list of the intangible cultural heritage of humanity. One of 16 new elements inscribed in December 2012.

UNESCO states: “Frevo is a Brazilian artistic expression comprising music and dance, performed mainly during the Carnival of Recife. Its quick frenetic and vigorous rhythm draws upon the fusion of musical genres such as marching music, Brazilian tango, square dance, polka and pieces of classical repertoire, performed by martial bands and fanfares. The music is essentially urban, and like the accompanying dance, ‘Passo’, is vigorous and subversive. The dance stems from the skill and agility of capoeira fighters, who improvise leaps to the electrifying sound of steel orchestras and bands.”

Among the reasons listed for its adoption on the list were:

1: Frevo constitutes a syncretic artistic expression recognized by the people of Recife as a festive symbol of their identity and continuity and constantly recreated by them in response to changing social conditions;

2: Its inscription on the Representative List could favour dialogue, promote mutual understanding, and foster appreciation of the creative spirit of humanity, thanks in particular to its openness to diverse people and communities;

3: The description of safeguarding measures is thorough and extensive, with well-identified activities focused on promotion, dissemination, documentation and education; the commitment of the communities and the support of the State Party are demonstrated;

4: The element was nominated following wide and active involvement of the community, associations and groups concerned, and their free, prior and informed consent is amply demonstrated;



Rio de Janeiro awarded UNESCO World Heritage status

The city of Rio de Janeriro was elected by UNESCO on 1 July 2012 to be a World Heritage Centre. The reason given by UNESCO was for Rio’s iconic landscape and setting.

Rio is the 19th Brazilian World Heritage Centre.

The full list is:


  • Brasilia (1987)
  • Historic Centre of Salvador de Bahia (1985)
  • Historic Centre of São Luís (1997)
  • Historic Centre of the Town of Diamantina (1999)
  • Historic Centre of the Town of Goiás (2001)
  • Historic Centre of the Town of Olinda (1982)
  • Historic Town of Ouro Preto (1980)
  • Jesuit Missions of the Guaranis: San Ignacio Mini, Santa Ana, Nuestra Señora de Loreto and Santa Maria Mayor (Argentina), Ruins of Sao Miguel das Missoes (Brazil) (1983)
  • Rio de Janeiro: Carioca Landscapes between the Mountain and the Sea (2012)
  • Sanctuary of Bom Jesus do Congonhas (1985)
  • São Francisco Square in the Town of São Cristóvão (2010)
  • Serra da Capivara National Park (1991)


  • Atlantic Forest South-East Reserves (1999)
  • Brazilian Atlantic Islands: Fernando de Noronha and Atol das Rocas Reserves (2001)
  • Central Amazon Conservation Complex (2000)
  • Cerrado Protected Areas: Chapada dos Veadeiros and Emas National Parks (2001)
  • Discovery Coast Atlantic Forest Reserves (1999)
  • Iguaçu National Park (1986)
  • Pantanal Conservation Area (2000)