11th Annual Samba Queen and King Contest

Samba Fogo's Annual Samba Queen and King contest is inspired by Rio's world-famous Carnival tradition. The Queen and King of Carnival is chosen through a contest based on their dance ability, energy, stage presence, ornate costume, beauty and style, but above all they must have the "Carnival Spirit".


This annual event serves as an opportunity for community members to celebrate and honor the deeply-rooted tradition of Carnival - a tradition where imagination comes to life, fantasies become realities, and everyday people transform into royalty.


Samba competition with live music performed by Samba Fogo.

THIS IS NOT A SIT-DOWN EVENT. There is live music and dancing for all, all night. It’s a dance party in addition to a dance contest!

Metro Music Hall is in the heart of downtown Salt Lake City. The event is open to ages 21+. Cash Bar hosted by Metro Music Hall, serving Caipirinhas (yummy Brazilian cocktails)

Doors open at 8:00pm and the dance contest starts at 9:00pm.


Tickets are now on sale!

Tickets to the Samba Queen Contest are $25 in advance or $30 at the door the night of the event.

VIP tables and single VIP tickets are available for $50 – $100 per person. VIP tickets come with cocktail service to your table, a great view of the stage, and VIP treatment. VIP options are limited, so act fast.

To purchase tickets or VIP tables visit: https://www.24tix.com/event/438040921/samba-queen-contest

Samba Queen Workshop Weekend

Leading up to the competition, we are holding a full weekend of dance workshops with several local and guest samba experts.

Our guests this year include:

– Amrahu Ibraheem – 3-time National Samba King

– Nascimento Gabriella – 2019 Samba Queen and dancer with Portela’s Comissāo de Frente

– Angelique Marquand Starks – director of SambAZ and host of the National Samba Queen Competition

– Lorin Hansen – 2-time Female Malandro Champion and director of Samba Fogo

– Aninha Malandro – organizer of the International Samba Congress and Brazilian samba royalty

Everyone is welcome to participate in the workshops, regardless of ability level – these classes are for all genders, all levels.

Workshop Schedule

Friday 02/28
Aninha Malandro, 6:00-7:00pm
Angelique Starks, 7:00-8:00p
Rodson de Jesus, 8:00-9:00pm

Saturday 02/29
Aninha Malandro, 11:00-12:00pm
Amrahu Ibraheem, 12:00-1:00pm
Lorin Hansen, 1:00-2:00pm
(Samba Queen that night at 8:00pm!)

Sunday 03/01
Amrahu Ibraheem, 11:00-12:00pm
Angelique Starks, 12:00-1:00pm
Gabriella Nascimento, 1:00-2:00pm

Workshop Weekend Registration:

To register ONLY for the workshops, select this button. You may purchase either the full 3-day package (9 classes) or single, drop-in classes.

*to register for both the Samba Queen and King Contest and the Workshop Weekend, please see Contest Registration below.

Contestant Information

NEW THIS YEAR: Group, King, & Semi Pro Divisions!

This year, we are adding new divisions to the competition!

-Group Contest – group choreography section
-King Contest – Rei Do Samba section
-Semi-Pro Contest – a section for those who are just beginning their samba journey, but want to enter the contest!

And of course, we will crown our 2020 Rainha Do Samba, Princesa do Samba, and Musa do Samba!

The contest is open to all who are aged 21 and up. Costumes are available to rent, and each contestant gets a chance to perform a two-minute solo on stage with a live Brazilian Bateria (drum line)! Guest judges and audience voting determine our 2020 winners.

Samba Queen and King Contest Registration

To register for the contest, select this button. You may also package together contest entry and workshop registration with this option.