Some of us at the Bahia Symphony/Olodum concert before the show started.
When we returned from Morro on Sunday afternoon, the people who had stayed in Salvador told us about an Olodum concert that evening. Olodum is an internationally acclaimed drumming and cultural group that I'd heard plenty about before coming to Salvador. They were supposedly leaving the country for a tour and were going to be doing one last performance with the Bahia Symphony Orchestra. I'm a classically trained musician and in the past few years I've found out my passion is world music-- music of the African Diaspora in particular. I thought it would be interesting to see a combination of symphonic music and samba reggae drumming in Brazil.
The concert was in a large outdoor ampitheater and the audiences was a mix of all ages and colors.
The whole group
It may have been because it was kind of a pops concert, but it was not at all like a typical American classical music concert. People were walking in and out during the show and vendors roamed through selling popcorn. They performed classics by Beethoven and such and popular Brazilian tunes. When they played familiar songs, the audience clapped and sang along... I would never even think about singing along at a classical concert in the US! When Olodum finally came out, the crowd went wild and everyone danced. It was quite a spectacle for the eyes and ears, much like the Tuesday night drumming in Pelourinho, but even more intense. They left the stage and the symphony performed an Afro-Brazilian symphonic piece. I was blown away by it, I wish I could have gotten the name of the composer. And then to top it off, part way through the song, Olodum came back on the stage to play with the symphony. It was amazing