Dance Festival in the City of Flowers, Joinville – Brazil
Every time I heard about Joinville my heart was beginning to bump up quickly. I don’t know really if it was about the origin of the name which sounds very French to me or about something more than intuitively intrigued me so much.
One day I was at the library, waving through the bookshelves hesitating what book should I choose when Ana rushed into the room:
“Go to Jessica! She has a big announcement to give!”
Jessica is Ana’s ballet teacher and what I can say is that she is really doing a great job. My daughter is crazy about her classes. The big announcement was about a trip to Joinville at the Dance Festival, the biggest dance festival in the world regarding the number of participants, more than 3,3 thousand ballet dancers from all over Brazil and other countries.
The next week, early in the morning, mothers and daughters were gathering in front of “Casa da Cultura Piana do Crivo”, in Morrinhos, waiting for the bus to leave for Joinville. They were like a flock of birds chittering with joy ready for the big adventure.
From Bombinhas to Joinville there is about 137 km, the entire transport was free, offered by Culture House for its participants. Thumbs up for Brazil and its interest in culturing the people.
Joinville, known also as The City of Flowers, The City of Bikes, The City of Princess or the Capital of Dance, is nowadays one of the most visited cities in the State of Santa Catarina and the South of Brazil.
According to the North Mythology, the Norwegian, the German and the Swiss people were the first settlers of the city. This trio of cultures and genius minds in time, transformed the city into the biggest city of the state, more than 500.000 inhabitants and into the city that collects the greatest amount of money paid for taxes. I should add that taxes in Brazil are outrageously big!
Joinville is really magic: flowers and gardens, decorated houses, buildings, parks, avenues, factories, colorful passageways, modern buses are part of the scenery. The most traditional means of transportation is the bicycle adding a Dutch touch to the painting.
It’s winter time in Brazil, the weather is subtropical, so winter is mild. We were very lucky for an incredible sunny day. The locals are happy and relaxed. I don’t know if it is about the Dance Festival and its vibe or if this is their normal state of mind! For 10 days the city looks like a huge stage. The dancers come from every corner of Brazil and also from other countries. They dance at parks, industries, streets and of course at Centreventos Cau Hansen where the Festival is held.
It is here, at Centreventos, that the Bolshoi Ballet School was established an independent unity. The well-known school has in Joinville the only branch outside Russia.
The trip was one of a kind! Ana was in heaven, watching ballet performances with her eyes wide open or rushing through the stores at “Feira da Sapatilha” searching for bargains, dance shoes, ballet outfits or accessories. For less than 40 $ we bought, shoes and skirts and tights. Here you can really feel the artist soul of Joinville. Among all the arts, music and dance have a unique expression. There is a place for the classic, for the folkloric and for the modern. We took a lot of pictures and we recorded as much as we could. Many of the moments are caught on camera but most of them are printed on our souls.
Ana’s favorite photo was taken at the entrance hall of Cau Hansen Centreventos, right there on the stairs, in a ballet position, framed by the scenes of a circus presentation that decorate the entrance. This art piece belongs to Juarez Machado, the most famous artist of Joinville. Ana asked so many questions during the trip that Google doesn’t have time to reply at all of them. She was so curious about the place, the dancers, the food.
We also visited a painting exhibition “Movimento Iminente” of Iraê Beck, an artist from Florianopolis. She loved more the brightest paintings that she really appreciated rather than the darkest ones. She can be the harshest critique sometimes!
We came back late in the night, tired and happy. It was one of a kind mother and daughter time and a rewarding one, a quality time spent with my youngest daughter.
Being a full time traveling family it is not always so easy to give every each of the three kids individual time and full attention of us, as parents. During this one on one time with Ana, I found out a lot of new things about her and her interests. Evan if Ana is not an introverted child and she is not shy at all, I know that sometimes it is difficult for her to express and be open with two other older siblings. Her behavior during the trip was impeccable and in the end, she told me that it was the most beautiful day of her life. The funny thing is that is not the first time she is telling me this! This kid really knows how to live in the present moment. I just know that she felt loved, valued and important and this is a must for every one of the kids.
Travel is more than education. It is parenting, self-development and education at the same time and Joinville was the magic environment to discover ourselves at the most profound levels and to strengthen even more our mother and daughter relation.
We’ll sure come back to Joinville, this charming Brazilian city with a French name and German accent that for a day welcomed a Romanian mother and her 7 yo ballerina offering such a great togetherness time and vibration. In November the city will hold the Flower Festival that I really want to catch on my camera. A great opportunity to build more memories with my family!