10th July 2014 Brasilia, Brazil

Creativity and the work of British consulates – pubs, lingerie and more! Guest blog by Richard Turner

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When you think of the work of diplomatic missions, you might think it is all political and consular work. You would be wrong. The largest amount of work is supporting British business connections and partnerships with Brazil. The Creative Industries sector is one of the most successful of the UK’s economy , having exported more than £31 billion in services and products in fashion, design, cinema, videogames  and other areas. Some highlights of the sector were represented during the World Cup on the GREAT Britain House, at the Brazilian British Centre in Sao Paulo. The GB House brought together public and media with lectures, exhibitions and events which have shown the strength of British creativity and culture.

 Pubs rule!

Pubs are all about music, drinks and food.  Musically, we had the GREAT Pub Rock Festival, which brought new alternative British  musicians Dan Croll, Dave McCabe, Silent Sleep and the MacManus Brothers to São Paulo’s main pubs. The drinks were covered by a master class on the art of  English beer with Fuller’s chief-brewer John Keeling. And the food was provided by Kenwood’s chef  Elzio Callefi in a packed tasting of gastro pub food. The British brand also showcased  a sample of its most innovative and beautiful pieces of cuisine accessories, like the multitask cooking pan in which you can make almost everything – even brigadeiro, the typical Brazilian sweet.

 Royal connections

The presence of Sir Tim Rice and Sir John Sorrell were a highlight in the GREAT Britain House. Rice, writer of massive West End hits such as The Lion King , was the star of a dinner offered by the British Consul in Sao Paulo, John Doddrell, to Brazilian artists and producers. Sorrell, creator of the London Design Festival, provided a happy day for the students of Escola São Paulo, where he spoke about design and commented on the creativity and simplicity of the Brazilians, with which he declared himself quite impressed with.  The third GB House – royal connection comes by the film industry: Simon Egan, co-producer of Oscar winning film The King’s Speech, was part of the Education Day in Rio and Sao Paulo with a masterclass.  And the fourth and final royal – GB House link comes in the form of a Prince, but that is for another post.

Lingerie and diplomatic missions?

British university De Montfort  (DMU) showcased portfolios, costumes and shoes designed by their students. DMU is the  first and only university in the world to offer a graduate course on lingerie design – starting this year, in September. The subject was the theme of an inspiring talk from Gillian Proctor, Principal-Professor of Fashion Contour at DMU, revealing lots more than the public imagined to know about soutiens, swimsuits and  underwear. Nichole de Carle, a DMU alumini whose lingerie brand has been a success in London and has Beyoncé among its clients, also talked about her experience in the field of lingerie design.

This goes to show that the work of the British missions in Brazil is quite diverse. It is merely a  reflection of the variety of connections between our two countries. And long may they grow and prosper in the future.

Richard Turner is Deputy Consul General, in São Paulo

About Chris Brealey

Chris Brealey has been a diplomat since 2000 and in Brazil for the last 4 years. Currently he works on foreign policy issues. Previously he worked in Ghana on issues…

Chris Brealey has been a diplomat since 2000 and in Brazil for the last 4 years. Currently he works on foreign policy issues. Previously he worked in Ghana on issues ranging from climate change to conflict resolution. Prior to that his focus in London was on the EU and Eastern Europe. In his spare time he has no spare time because he has two children.. but he does love visiting the Cerrado with his family.

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