To our community,
It is with heavy hearts that we announce the dissolution of Unidos de Brisbane.
Udb began as a way to fill an empty spot; by 3 women frustrated with the lack of samba socials, in comparison to the plethora of salsa ones. However, that spot has now been filled and we’re so appreciative at the amazing amount of choice we have now; samba do imigrante for your social fix, workshops to drummers, passista style training and plenty of performance opportunities.
Regrettably, we have received too much objection and push back from the community, and whilst we have always tried to position ourselves to fill a gap in the community, particularly with a samba school and carnaval, it has been a difficult balance to achieve, we didn’t always get everything right, but we always did it from a place of love for samba and wanting to spread our passion for Brazilian culture. We made it our priority to employ local Brazilians and artists in our quest to promote samba culture and to promote every school where you can learn to dance to and play samba music.
We have always been here to serve the community and we have always considered your needs and wants. We would like to lastly address some concerns over the criticism that we have been “profiteering” off Brazilian culture. For the past 3 years the committee has invested their own money, and thousands of hours organising events. These events have been free or under an association membership model, which is by law not for profit. Our financial statements have always been open to the public, but ultimately, we only ever charged enough money to ensure that we could appropriately pay for our artists and ateliers (most of which have been local Brazilians), costumes, venues and insurance, and to not undersell the local dance and drumming schools. To this day the board members have never received a single dollar.
On the lighter side, we will be forever grateful to those who were involved in our 2019 carnaval – it is still our biggest achievement and we will remember it always as Brisbane’s first fully structured Rio style carnaval. We hope to be on the other side and participating in the next one sometime in the near future, rather than organising it. We are also really proud of our monthly samba socials, our International Samba day celebrations and our beautiful passista sistas who were the soul of our association. A special thanks to our Maestre de Bateria Lucas who provided the heartbeat for our socials, carnival, and events.
For all those who already signed up, we will refund your funds as soon as possible and for any leftover money, we are looking to host one last night samba party. Stay tuned! In the meantime, we ask that you please do not send direct messages to UdB, we have much work in unpacking this organisation.
Obrigada!! Beijos XOXO