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Notting Hill Carnival

The Notting Hill Carnival takes place in Notting Hill, London, England. This is an annual street event which lasts more than two days. Over two million people have been attracted to this event in the past making Notting Hill Carnival the second largest festival in the world after the one in Rio de Janeiro.

DateSunday 23rd August 2009 to Tuesday 25th August 2009
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Children, families and young people, who dress in traditional Caribbean-style, parade in elaborate costumes. Painted faces and matching T-shirts designed on a theme can be seen in various groups. Great enthusiasm and high spirits help the participants to enjoy the mass event. Costumed masquerades and many sound systems spread throughout the area play a range of music at high volume. You can see athletic women in feathered-costumes as well as towering puppetry structures which are manpowered by four individuals .The bands and their costumes are an essential part of the Carnival. Elaborate and sophisticated costumes and designs for the event create an interesting and colourful phenomenon.

Notting Hill Carnival is the high-point occasion of the year for hundreds of participants who prepare for months, designing and working on complex costumes to synchronize with dance and music on the eventful day. Every band must have at least thirty participants in costume and should be accompanied by a sound system or steel pan playing predominately Soca/Calypso music. Performances are constructed around a pre-selected subject matter or theme. Generally political and social issues are highlighted and emphasized.

The Caribbean flavour of the event became obvious in 1976 when around 150,000 people attended the festivities. Notting Hill Carnival is sometimes flawed with fights and trouble. The police keep a close vigil and are prepared for the security of the visitors and participants. Despite the controversy over the public safety aspects in some narrow streets of London, Notting Hill Carnival seems popular among street festivals. Prince Charles remains one of the supporters of this event.