Time Out Rio de Janeiro

Rock In Rio Music Festival 2011

Brazil's biggest festival is back.

Ten long years since the last edition blew the collective eardrums of the city's music fans, Brazil's biggest music festival Rock in Rio is ready to roll once more. Stretched out across two weekends in September and October and with the line-ups now all but signed and sealed, tickets will finally go on sale this month to the baying masses.

Costing a whopping R$190 a day they may seem a tad excessive, but with the likes of Metallica, Coldplay and many a Carioca's favourite obsession, Guns n' Roses, all on the bill, now is not the time to procrastinate about costs.

1985 was something of a landmark year for rock music across the world. In July, Live Aid took place simultaneously in London and Philadelphia raising money for Ethiopia's famine relief, with the help of the biggest bands on the planet.

Freddie Mercury's Queen played one of the most awe-inspiring sets of all time at Wembley Stadium, but the band had already been part of another momentous music event earlier in the year, itself seen live by an audience of over 200 million people in 60 countries; the first ever Rock in Rio. Mercury loved it so much the band eventually released his improvised homage to the city Rock in Rio Blues as a b-side to the single A Winter's Tale.

Roberto Medina's brand has since become a success in Europe with festivals in Lisbon and Madrid, but finally returns after a ten-year hiatus to its spiritual home of Rio de Janeiro this year. AC/DC, George Michael, Iron Maiden, INXS, Run DMC, Faith no More and Prince are just a few of the international superstars to have graced the Rock in Rio stage over the years, contributing to one of the most famous brands in Brazilian music.

The original ten-day festival saw 1.4 million music fans descend on Jacarepagua in the west of Rio. 2011 could well see all the records broken.

The location has moved only slightly from its original 1985 position, now forming a huge recreational area created with an eye on the 2016 Olympics and the surrounding entertainment that comes with that unrivalled event. A New Orleans-inspired Rock Street with live jazz, bars and restaurants, two stages and an electronic music tent make up the various zones, and the city is gearing up for a sensory overload as the event draws closer.

With the line ups finally confirmed, the main attractions look like this:

Friday 23 September
Elton John
Katy Perry
Claudia Leite

Saturday 24 September
Red Hot Chili Peppers
Snow Patrol
Capital Inicial
NX Zero

Sunday 25 September

Thursday 29 September
Stevie Wonder
Janelle Monae

Friday 30 September
Lenny Kravitz
Ivete Sangalo
Marcelo D2

Saturday 1 October

Sunday 2 October
Guns n' Roses          
System of a Down

Words by Time Out Rio de Janeiro editors

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