Black Women of Brazil

The site dedicated to Brazilian women of African descent

Meet Michelle: Rio’s 2013 Carnaval season passista dancer

Michelle Fernandes

Michelle Fernandes, iG Passista of Rio de Janeiro 2013

Note from BW of Brazil: Hard as it may be to believe, but Carnaval season n Brazil is right around the corner. In Rio, another brown-skinned beauty was named Rio’s Passista dancer of 2013 heading into the new year. Learn about her victory below.  See more of Michelle here.  

Michelle Fernandes is named the iG Passista of Rio 2013


The winner of the contest sponsored by iG (1) returned to Sapucaí (2) at dawn on Sunday (17) to parade for the Unidos de Vila Isabel, the Rio carnival 2013 Samba School champion.

The Passista iG 2013 in Rio, Michelle Fernandes, defends the Unidos de Vila Isabel Samba School, carnival association 2013 champion of Rio. The muse spoke a bit moments before returning to Sapucaí at dawn on Sunday (17).


“It’s very exciting coming from the winning school. This is my third year as a passista (dancer) (3) in Vila. I’m having this privilege of my school being champion and I the iG Passista,” Michelle said. “Today I was very nervous because, first they told me I could not march with the iG sash. I was very upset, but then they called me and said that everything was all right,” added the passista, relieved.

Surrounded by fans at the sambódromo (2), Michelle stopped to distribute autographs and pose for pictures. Friendly, Michelle commented on the attention that is already beginning to reach her. “It’s very nice to receive this affection from the public,” she said.


However, Michelle knows she can’t lose her simplicity, one of the reasons that made her the winner of the contest sponsored by iG. “You have to have humility above all. It’s not because I won the contest that will be different than I am,” she said.


Even having won the sash before parading for Vila Isabel, Michelle believes that she brought luck to the association. “I can say that I brought luck to school, yes. Since last year we waited for this day,” she said. “There wasn’t another school to win that wasn’t Vila, which was the only school to be applauded as a champion on the day of the parade.  The people wanted the school to be champion,” she concluded.


Age: 20
Height: 4’11 (1.50 m)
Weight: 114 lbs (52 kgs)
Measurements: 30-27-37 (77-68-94cm)

Source: iG (1), iG (2)


1. Internet Group (iG) is a Brazilian online service provider and internet service provider.

2. The Sambadrome Marquês de Sapucaí (Passarela Professor Darcy Ribeiro or Sambódromo in Portuguese) or simply Sambadrome is a purpose-built parade area in downtown Rio de Janeiro, Brazil where samba schools parade competitively each year during the Rio Carnival. The parades attract many thousands of Brazilians and foreign tourists each year. Source

3. During Brazilian Carnaval, “passistas” are known for their elaborate bikini-like costumes and usually dance the Samba while leading the drumming troupe known as the “bateria”.

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This entry was posted on December 28, 2013 by in photos, Rio de Janeiro, Samba school, Sambódromo and tagged , , , .
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