Brazil’s Cultural Attaché in London speaks exclusively with BBMag
This edition of BBMag is launching a new section that will feature interviews with successful and prominent Brazilians in London. And we couldn’t ask for a better start: meet Paula Rassi, Cultural Attaché at the Embassy of Brazil, whose fabulous work so far shows how much she loves her role promoting Brazilian culture in London.
BBMag: Hi Paula, tell us a little about your work to promote Brazilian culture in London and some of the initiatives led by the Brazilian Embassy throughout the UK.
PR: The Embassy promotes over 60 cultural projects a year encompassing music, film, literature, visual arts, theatre, among others. In addition to some of the regular activities (like the Book Club – monthly, Cineclub – biweekly, BREEZE – annual), we aim to offer new initiatives to the British public, alongside and in line with the UK’s cultural calendar (musical seasons, associations with London’s fairs and festivals, etc.). Those wanting to learn more about Brazilian culture are able to find at least one relevant activity going on at the Embassy each of the 52 weeks of the year.
BBMag: Which exhibition or event at the Embassy in London has most stood out for you, and why?
PR: What a difficult question! Just like one should not prefer one child over the other, I genuinely believe that each cultural project holds its own importance, usually for quite different reasons. To cite just a few memorable initiatives of recent times, I would say: some of the exhibitions (The Art of Diplomacy, for its exceptional narrative, history and execution; Rhythmic Beats: Ivan Serpa and his legacy, for its sensitivity and for transcending the importance of his practice and influence; and Somos Brazil, by Marcus Lyon, for creating such harmony between photography, technology and science, and for illustrating the beauty of Brazilian diversity); the concerts (The Music of Brazil, with pianist Sonia Rubinsky, for her boundless talent and for the important partnership between Itamaraty and classical music label Naxos) and Pablo Rossi, for the impeccable performance of such a varied, and mostly national, repertoire; the cinema (Cinema of Brazil, with films by award-winning Brazilian directors, and the CineClub sessions, with the participation of academics, directors and actors); and our theatre programme, such as the Nelson Rodrigues Festival, which was both critically and publicly acclaimed.
BBMag: What about the overall influence of Brazilian culture in the UK? Do the Brits embrace it? What’s your take?
PR: The international appeal of Brazilian culture is undeniable, and I am pleased to say that the UK can’t resist it either! It is not just how the culture is perceived either, there is also a very real and growing interest in different types of Brazilian art within the UK. This is a view supported by the increasing number of live musical performances, as well as the noticeable rise in purchases of Brazilian art (by private collectors and public institutions, such as the Tate Modern).
BBMag: Where can we find out more about the upcoming schedule (November 2019 – May 2020) of public events?
PR: Embassy programming is promoted through our own media channels (our website, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter), depending on the event or activity. One good way to stay informed is to keep an eye on our Eventbrite page, and it’s also worth making sure your email is registered in our mailing database (contact details can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org).