With Pânico na TV (lowest common denominator late night telly fluff) presenter Sabrina Sato as rainha da bateria, there will be no escaping the presence of Vila Isabel as she again does her best to court the limelight over the weekend. This is one of the older schools, however, and with such a rich history of music coming from the neighbourhood they can never be discounted from the honours, finishing in the top four in the last four years. Vila Isabel, Boulevard 28 de Setembro 382, Vila Isabel. Rehearsals Tuesdays 8pm & Saturdays 10pm.
- Founded - 1946
- Titles - 2
- Colours - Blue and white
- Theme - The agriculture of Brazil
- Queen - Sabrina Sato
- Last won - 2006 (3rd last year)
- Fact - in 2006 Vila Isabel's carnival was predominantly funded by a donation, estimated at somewhere between $450,000 and $2million, from the Venezuelan state oil company PDVSA. Five hundred Venezuelans were said to have been flown to Rio by the company to take part in the procession, which just happened to be their first victory in two decades following several years languishing in the Grupo de Acesso.
- Chances - 80/1 (unlikely to sparkle this year)
- Read our full guide to Rio Carnival 2013