For the 2017 edition, the audience’s most loved street is inspired by a continent, Africa, which will be represented in the musicians, street attractions and architecture of the houses. There will be exclusive shows with iconic African artists during the 7-day event. The artistic curator of the space will be Toy Lima, in partnership with artistic director Marisa Menezes, who is in charge of all the programming on the street as well as its distinctive characters.
Since 2011, Rock in Rio has offered its visitors a space dedicated to different artistic installations, where the audience feels like part of the performance and interacts with the show. Rock Street seeks inspiration in iconic places from the world of music: New Orleans in 2011, the UK and its neighboring Ireland in 2013; and in 2015, the inspiration was Brazil. Aware of the vast contribution of African music to the world stage, Rock in Rio, which has celebrated the most diverse musical segments since its first edition, decided to dedicate Rock Street entirely to Africa and show the origin of all the rhythms that will be on the other stages of the festival.
The entire representation of the continent will be playful and focus on entertaining the audience. Visitors will see elements of African culture close up, highlighting its multiculturalism in the rhythms to the costumes, which were developed from authentic fabrics and colorful beads. The traditional features of the clothes will also be present, in addition to the shells, bells and fringes, with everything being as close as possible to the real thing.
On Rock Street, three couples will represent the different people of Africa and be responsible for interacting with visitors. There will be performances, percussion and lots of dancing representing African rhythms - from traditional to modern - as well as a choir. Among the inspirations are weddings from the Congo, with courtship between the men and women. As for the dance, it will be the responsibility of a group of percussionists and youth from the Carioca School of Black Dance. They will use Dogon-inspired clothes with vibrant colors.
The plurality of Africa will also be represented in the set design of João Uchôa and Glauco Bernardes. The architecture of the countries, their historic buildings and typical structures were researched and each location served as a reference in the design of the 20 houses set up along the street. Additionally, typical animals from each country are represented, whether in the signs or sculptures, in a reference to the fauna of the continent.