Charme Dance

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Charme Dance. Photo: Isabela Kassow/Diadorim Ideias
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For twenty two years a black music 'stronghold', the "Baile Charme" (a party in which a variation of Rhythm & Blues music is the main attraction) gathers up to two thousand people on Saturdays under Negrão de Lima Overpass, also known as Dutão, in Madureira, at the city's "Zona Norte" (Northern Zone). It's a new Rio de Janeiro to be discovered.

Dancers occupy the lane and dance choreographed steps. The party goers portray various styles and attitudes of black culture and follow the dancers' every step. Onstage, Hip hop, Rhythm & Blues and Soul DJs are in charge of the pickups. DJ Michell, one of the event's founders, says the word "charme" was given by DJ Corello, between 1979 and 1980, in a party that took place at Mackenzie club. During the slow-tempo songs, Corello would say to the audience: "it's time to use your charm - swing your body slowly", says Michell.

The "Baile Charme" was born from a group of street vendors which liked DJing at the Madureira Overpass. The initiative was given the name of Projeto Charme na Rua (Charm Music on the Streets) and has the support of well-known DJ Malboro, who lent his equipment for the first parties. Today, the "Baile Charme" regulars are in their third generation, grandchildren of the first "Dutão" partiers. 

The "Baile" traditionally pays tribute to prominent charm dancers, with awards such as the Halley Award, a reference to one of the first regulars. The Halley was awarded to dancer and choreographer Fly. Fly, former member of You Can Dance dance crew, he also has his own website, Dance com Fly, in which he offers opportunities for charm dancers to showcase their talent and find work opportunities. 


The area below the Negrão de Lima Overpass is occupied by street vendors during the day. On the night of the third Thursday of the month, the jongo (a dance and musical genre of black communities from southeast Brazil) project and dance performances by Companhia de Aruanda.


On Saturday nights, the space between two ramps that give access to the overpass is occupied by the Charme Cultural Space, protected by a law set by the Rio de Janeiro City Council in the year 2000 to protect and promote "charme" and "pagode" music. During the parties, charm crews have their albums for sale and pastry and caipirinha (the country's national cocktail made with cachaça, sugar and lime) stalls offer partygoers food and drinks. 

General Information

Address: Negrão de Lima Overpass, Madureira, Rio de Janeiro.
Opening hours:

Saturdays, starting at midnight. 

Secretaria de Cultura do Estado do Rio de Janeiro Petrobras

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