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Every year before the beginning of Lent, Brazilian carnivals featuring massive parades that double as samba dancing competitions are held across the country. Preparations are already well underway for the events, including in Brazil's two largest cities, São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, whose parades will be held Feb. 8-9 and Feb. 10-11, respectively.
Teams set to compete in the carnivals spend months preparing. Here, a member of Imperatriz Leopoldinense samba school paints a yaguarete effigy on Feb. 4, during preparations for the famous carnival parade at the Sambodromo in Rio de Janeiro.