The Bateria: Meeting Point of Many Cultures

The African roots of capoeira are well-known, but the contributions of other cultures to the art form may surprise many angoleiros.

In his seminal work Capoeira Angola: Ensaio Socio-Etnográfico, the celebrated scholar of Afro-Bahia culture, Waldeloir Rego, traced the origins of the instruments present in the modern capoeira bateria and found a true musical kaleidoscope.  Rego describes the berimbau as an instrument frequently used not only in capoeira but also in Afro-Brazilian parties, particularly in samba de roda. Its specific origins or how it arrived in Brazil, according to Rego, are unknown: “There are mentions of this instrument in various corners of the universe, including Africa…” In Latin America, Rego identifies Cuba as the other country where the instrument is as well-known as it is in Brazil, but, unlike its Brazilian cousin, the Cuban berimbau—also known as burumbumba, sambi, pandigurao, or gorokikamo—was used specifically in Afro-Cuban religious ceremonies to ‘talk with the dead.’

The pandeiro is, according to Rego, “one of the oldest musical instruments of Ancient India” and was used by Hebrews in religious ceremonies.  With the Moorish invasions of the Iberian Peninsula, the pandeiro, became popular throughout Portugal and Spain, frequently used in weddings and religious ceremonies and was a favorite of the Catholic monarchs, Ferdinand of Aragon and Isabella of Castile.  It arrived in Brazil through the Portuguese and was first used in Bahia in the processions of the Feast of Corpus Christi.  Another musical instrument with a heavy Arabic influence is the atabaque. According to Rego, the instrument’s name is Arabic and “is an Oriental instrument very old among the Persians and the Arabs, but well known in Africa.”  Rego states:  “Although Africans already knew the atabaque, and other varieties of the instrument came from Africa, I believe that when Africans arrived in Brazil, they found that the instrument had already been brought [to Brazil] by Portuguese hands to be used in parties and religious processions in the same circumstances as the pandeiro.

Reco reco
Rego writes that the origins of the reco-reco or ganzá and of its name are unknown, but that the instruments has been widely used in the Northeast of Brazil and has been mentioned in many of the poetic verses sung by Northeastern troubadours.  The instrument was a favorite in carnival processions in Rego’s time.  Oddly, Rego states that he never saw the reco-reco being played in capoeira rodas.  The agogô is, according to Rego, an African instrument that arrived to Brazil through the slave trade.  Its name is a Nagô word that means “bell.”  The instrument has been widely popularized throughout Brazil and is used popular festivities.  Rego, however, says that the instrument features prominently in Afro- Brazilian religious ceremonies, where it is used to greet the orixás.  Interestingly, in the capoeira context, Rego mentions that he only saw the agogô being used in the schools of M. Canjiquinha and M. Pastinha.

Many might dispute Rego’s theories of the origins of the capoeira instruments.  One thing may be certain, though. The capoeira bateria, like many other aspects of Brazilian culture, is an amalgam of many cultural traditions.   Rego’s Capoeira Angola: Ensaio Socio-Etnográfico is only available in Portuguese and is now out of print, but if you’d like to read the entire chapter on the capoeira instruments, there are some versions of the book scanned on the web or you can come to the FICA DC Archives in Washington, DC!


We're back.... With Some Rock Star Angoleiros

In his My Rock Stars Experimental, Volume I, 2012, Moroccan artist, Hassan Hajjaj, describes his subjects as ordinary people he admires who are "...comfortable in their own skins... Real rock stars: not aware of anything, they just go for it." His nine-panel video installation currently on display at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) features nine performers from around the world showcasing their musical talents.  Among the Jamaican female hip hop artists and the Malian kora player is one familiar face: a London angoleiro named Toca Feliciano playing berimbau and singing a ladainha.


Two FICA-DC angoleiras recently visited LACMA and took this amateur video of Toca just "going for it."  Enjoy! (and apologies for the low quality sound!).  If you're in LA, check out LACMA and this fantastic exhibit currently on display in the Ahmanson Building.  Keep rockin'!!


Berlin, Germany: 2011 Easter Encounter

Easter Capoeira Angola Meeting 2011

Berlin, Germany

April 21 - 24, 2011

Mestre João Grande (New York), Mestre Cobra Mansa (Salvador), Mestre Roberval (Salvador), Mestre Rosalvo (Berlin), Mestre Ciro (Salvador), Mestre Paulo Siqueira (Hamburg) and Contramestra Susy (Berlin)

Professor Marquinho, Professor Angola, Professor Zequinha

· Capoeira Angola classes (movement and music) for all levels
· Rodas
· Afro-brazilian dance classes and streching classes
· Capoeira Angola classes for kids
· Discussions and lectures: „Em busca das Raizes“. Mestre Cobra Mansa will present his research from his travels in Angola 20006-2010 on African dances such as N`golo, a Cabangula which influenced Capoeira in Brazil
· Partys

Thursday, 21.04.2011
12-2, Capoeira Angola class: movement and music
2.30-4:00, Capoeira Angola class: movement and music
4:30, RODA
8:00, Dinner

Friday, 22.04.2011
8-9, Breakfast
10-12, Capoeira Angola class: movement and music
12:30-2:30, Capoeira Angola class: movement and music, Dance class
3:00-4:00, Capoeira Angola class for kids (4-8 years)
4:00-5:00vCapoeira Angola class for kids (>8 years)
3-5, Capoeira Angola class with training roda
5:30-7, Comida
7:00, Discussion and lectures: „Em busca das Raizes“ de Cobra Mansa
10:00, Party/Bar

Saturday, 23.04.2011
8-9, Breakfast
10-12, Capoeira Angola class: movement and music
12:30-2:30, Capoeira Angola class: movement and music, Dance class
3:00-4:00, Capoeira Angola class for kids (4-8 years)
4:00-5:00, Capoeira Angola class for kids (>8 years)
3-5, Capoeira Angola class: movement and music
5:30-7, Lunch
7:00, RODA
10:00, Party/Bar

Sunday, 24.04.2011
8-9, Breakfast
10-11:30, Capoeira Angola class: movement and music
12:00-1:30, Capoeira Angola class: movement and music, Dance class
1:00-2:00, Capoeira Angola class for kids (4-8 years)
2:00-3:00, Capoeira Angola class for kids (>8 years)
2:00-3:30, Capoeira Angola class: movement and music
7:00, Dinner

Monday, 25.04.2011
8-9, Breakfast
10-12, Capoeira Angola class: movement and music
12:30-2:30, Capoeira Angola class: movement and music
3:00, Lunch

Before Abril 1: 150€ (includes a sleeping place and breakfast)
After Abril 1: 170€
3 days: 145 € /125 € (before 01.04.11)
1-2 days: 115 € /95 € (before 01.04.11)

Please deposit the amount on the following bank account:
Capoeira Angola e.V. Postbank Berlin
BLZ 10010010 Kto 672233107 IBAN DE78 1001 0010 0672 2331 07 BIC PBNKDEFF

· Lunch: We will serve every day a delicious brazilian lunch or dinner, with a vegetarian option. Price will be around 5 Euros.
· Rodas: Please bring white clothing for the rodas .
· Sleeping place:Please bring a sleeping bag.

Check out the pictures from last years great event!
Capoeira Angola Oster Treffen 2011

Berlin, 21.04.-25.04.2011

Mestre Joao Grande (New York), Mestre Cobra Mansa (Salvador), Mestre Roberval (Salvador), Mestre Rosalvo (Berlin), Mestre Ciro (Salvador), Mestre Paulo Siqueira (Hamburg) and Contramestra Susy (Berlin)

Professor Marquinho, Professor Angola, Professor Zequinha, Carlos da Silva

· Capoeira Angola Klassen (Bewegung und Musik) für alle
· Rodas
· Afro-brasilianischer Tanz und stretching Klassen
· Capoeira Angola für Kinder
· Diskussionen und Vorträge: „Em busca das Raizes“. Mestre Cobra Mansa wird seine Forschungen und Untersuchungen von seinen Reisen nach Angola 20006-2010 vorstellen. Wie der Afrikanischen Tanz z.B. N`golo, oder Cabangula die Capoeira in Brasilien beeinflusst hat.
· Partys

Donnerstag, 21.04.2011
12-2, Capoeira Angola Klassen: Bewegung und Musik
2.30-4:00, Capoeira Angola Klassen: Bewegung und Musik
4:30, RODA
8:00, Essen

Freitag, 22.04.2011
8-9, Frühstück
10-12, Capoeira Angola Klassen: Bewegung und Musik
12:30-2:30, Capoeira Angola Klassen: Bewegung und Musik, Tanz Klassen
3:00-4:00, Capoeira Angola Klasse für Kinder (4-8 Jahre)
4:00-5:00, Capoeira Angola Klasse für Kinder (>8 Jahre)
3-5, Capoeira Angola Klasse mit Trainingsroda
5:30-7, Essen
7:00, Diskussion und Vortrag: „Em busca das Raizes“ de Cobra Mansa
10:00, Party/Bar

Samstag, 23.04.2011
8-9, Frühstück
10-12, Capoeira Angola Klassen: Bewegung und Musik
12:30-2:30, Capoeira Angola Klassen: Bewegung und Musik, Tanz Klasse
3:00-4:00, Capoeira Angola Klasse für Kinder (4-8 Jahre)
4:00-5:00, Capoeira Angola Klasse für Kinder (>8 Jahre)
3-5, Capoeira Angola Klassen: Bewegung und Musik
5:30-7, Essen
7:00, RODA
10:00, Party/Bar

Sonntag, 24.04.2011
8-9, Frühstück
10-11:30, Capoeira Angola Klasse: Bewegung und Musik
12:00-1:30, Capoeira Angola Klasse: Bewegung und Musik, Tanz Klasse
1:00-2:00, Capoeira Angola Klasse für Kinder (4-8 Jahre)
2:00-3:00, Capoeira Angola Klasse für Kinder (>8 Jahre)
2:00-3:30, Capoeira Angola Klasse: Bewegung und Musik
7:00, Essen

Montag, 25.04.2011
8-9, Frühstück
10-12, Capoeira Angola Klasse: Bewegung und Musik
12:30-2:30, Capoeira Angola Klasse: Bewegung und Musik
3:00, Essen

Bis 1 Abril 2011: 150 € (Inklusive Schlafplatz und Frühstück)
Nach dem 1 Abril 2011: 170 €

Preise für einzelne Tage:
3 Tage: 145 € /125 € (vor 01.04.)
1-2 Tage: 115 € /95 € (vor dem 01.04.)

Bitte Überweisung auf das folgende Konto:
Capoeira Angola e.V. Postbank Berlin
BLZ 10010010 Kto 672233107 IBAN DE78 1001 0010 0672 2331 07 BIC PBNKDEFF

· Essen: Wir bieten jeden Tag ein leckeres brasilianisches Essen mit einer vegetarischen Option. Es wird so um die 5 Euros kosten.
· Rodas: Bitte weisse Kleidung für die Rodas mitbringen.
· Schlafplätze: Bitte Schlafsäcke mitbringen.

Sehen sie sich die Bilder von letzten großen Treffen vom letzten Jahr an:

FOTOS (unsere alte Webseite)

Dank an alle Teilnehmer, die diesen wunderbaren Event möglich gemacht haben!!!


Santiago de Compostela, Spain: 3rd International Encounter

III International Capoeira Angola Encounter

Grupo Zimba

Santiago de Compostela, Galicia, Spain

April 15 - 17, 2011

"Capoeira and Negritude"

Address: Avenida Castelao
At the Jose Saramago de Vite Cultural Center, 15704

Special guests: Mestre Pedrinho de Caxias of Rio de Janeiro, Mestre Laércio of Grupo Filhos de Angola, Berlin, anf Contramestre Dirceu from Grupo Liberdade de Vadiar based in Madrid.


Orgnaized by Mestre Boca do Rio.


Cachoeira, Bahia, Brazil: 16th Annual Encounter Dates

Mark your calendars, angoleir@s!

The 16th International FICA Conference will be held July 28 - August 1, 2011, in Cachoeira, Bahia, Brazil (a couple hours away from Salvador).

More information about registration, housing, transportation and other details will be coming soon - but for now save the date in your calendars!


Seoul, South Korea: Event Introducing Capoeira Angola

Building Bridges: Getting to know Capoeira Angola in Korea

March 18th-20th, 2011

Special Guest: Contramestre Rogério Teber of FICA

On behalf of Contra-mestre Rogerio Teber of FICA and the Capoeira Angola Study Group in Korea we would like to cordially invite you to participate in our event “Building Bridges: Getting to know Capoeira Angola in Korea.” The event will be held on March 18th – 20th, hosted by Escola Alegria in Seoul, South Korea. We are excited about contributing to the growth and betterment of Capoeira in Korea and hope to have your groups support. More details of the event can be found on our website or feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns that you may have.

저 희가 주최하는 행사, “Building Bridges: Getting to know Capoeira Angola in Korea.”에 FICA의 콘트라마스터 호제리오 테베와 한국 까뽀에이라 앙골라 스터디 그룹의 이름으로 당신을 정중히 초청하고자 합니다. 행사는 3월 18일~20일에 에스꼴라 알레그리아 열립니다. 저희는 이 행사가 한국의 까뽀에이라의 성장과 발전에 기여하리란 기대에 흥분된 기분을 감출 수 없으며, 여러 다른 그룹들도 이 행사를 지지해 주었으면 합니다. 행사에 대한 더 자세한 정보는 저희 홈페이지(www.capoeirakorea.org)에 있으며, 질문이나 의문 사항이 있으시면 언제든지 연락주십시오.

Peace and axé,

Grupo de Estudo Capoeira Angola na Coreia

한국 까뽀에이라 앙골라 스터디 그룹

Capoeira Angola Study Group Korea

Grupo de Estudo Capoeira Angola na Coreia
Seoul, South Korea
Group Leader: Kevin Giddens
Phone: 010-2728-9533


Belo Horizonte, Brazil: Women's Encounter

National Women’s Encounter
Angoleira Sim Senhor!

March 25 – 27, 2011
Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil

FICA-BH Academy
Rua Itatiaia, 86, Bonfim (across from Radio Itatiaia)

Opening Roda
March 25, 7 pm

Invited guests: Comtramestre Alcione, Contramestre Cristina, Treinel Gege

registration: R$50,00


London, UK: Encounter Celebrating Women

London Capoeira Encounter
Celebrating Women in Capoeira

March 4 – 5, 2011

Friday, March 4
7 – 10 pm
Gibbs Green Community Center, W14
(West Kensington Tube)
Training & Roda followed by fruit & other treats
(requested £ contribution)

Saturday, March 5
(1 – 8 pm)
The Thanet Centre, Herbert Street, NW5 4HD
(Chalk Farm Tube)
Movement & Music, 1 – 3 pm; Roda 3 – 5 pm
food, film and discussion to follow

“Cada um e cada um. Ninguém luta do meu jeito”.
Mestre Pastinha

March is recognized as the time for everyone to remember the political role of women inbuilding a society with equal rights. In the world of Capoeira many groups take advantage of this moment to celebrate and reinforce the presence of women and their role in Capoeira. For the first time in London many different groups will be together doing the same thing.

Amazonas, Kabula, Marazul and Capoeira Angola London are offering this opportunity for the London Capoeira Community. It is not a event only for women. It is a event for Capoeristas and all the Community which feels that Capoeira movement is important. We will be connected with the old philosophy of Capoeira. Capoeira is for women, men and girls and boys. Come to visit us on the 4th and 5th of March. We will be together playing, singing, discussing, chatting, and celebrating.


Rio de Janeiro: Birthday Roda

February 26, 2011
11 am
Mercado das Pulgas @ Rua Almirante Alexandrino, Largo dos Guimarães, Santa Teresa, Rio de Janeiro RJ
contact: 21 3770.7256, cel: 21 9876.9915

Mestre José Carlos and N’Golo will host once again one of the most traditional Rodas de Capoeira Angola in Rio, Santa Teresa. In addition, it will be celebrated Mestre Carlão’s (from Kabula Arts) birthday in Mercado das Pulgas.

All capoeiristas are welcome to this day of celebration and comradeship. Bring your friends and familly to join us and lets rise the energy of capoeira and carnival.
Note that this Saturday there is no class in Kabula Rio due to N’Golo Roda.


São Paulo, Brazil: Workshops with M Janja

Mestre Janja in São Paulo

Capoeira Angola Open Workshop

Lecture: 30 years without Pastinha

Sunday, February 20
2:30 pm

Nzinga Space
Rua dos Cariris, 13

Contribution: R$20,00


London, UK: Open Roda and Classes with M Roberval

Open Community Roda with Mestre Roberval
March 20

Geffrye Community Centre
Falkirk Street

Adult class - Young peoples class - Roda - Food

Classes will be taught by Master Roberval - Alex Carrapeta
The idea is to have a "day of capoeira and food" a chance to meet people from other groups and encourage young people to develop their understanding of our art.

Running order and cost
1. Adult Master Class - 2 hours
2. Young peoples class - 1 hour
3. Roda - children and adults together one running into another
4. Food. The food will be a traditional Brazilian or Jamaican type food appropriate for a hungry capoeirista!

Adult class 12pm start £10 - Master Roberval - Filhos de Angola
Children Class 2pm start £5 or contribution
Food £5


St. Petersburg, Russia: February Workshops

Capoeira Angola Sao Petersburgo presents

Workshops with Toca (FICA London)


February 11 - Training during 4-hours in the afternoon
February 12-13 - Training during full day with a lunch break

In the program: music, songs, movement, roda and discussions.

The total cost of the seminar - 50 euros

We can guarantee accommodation for visitors if you will send us a request before 26 January.

Information & registration:

paratynka (at) yandex.ru- Masha
8950 044 8 222 - Masha



Easy Ways to Help an Important Mestre

Now’s the time to walk the walk, folks.

Here’s a message from Mestre Lua Rasta in regard to Mestre Bigodinho in Salvador.

He gives some easy suggestions that every group can take to help. If we all give, we can make a big difference!

Keep in mind that euros, dollars, and yen go far in Brazil.

Oi galera,

Mestre Bigodinho is recovering from a fracture in his leg and it is hard for him to get around, and consequently, work.

So, we are asking everyone to pitch in and help.

If everyone who understands the importance of Mestre could do a little, I believe that we can ease this difficult time for him.

The following actions would be a lot of help:

- A fund-raising event at your space (roda, workshop, film screening, party, feijoada) to support Mestre.
- Buy a Mestre Waldemar cd (a single one or an entire box!) from Teimosia who has proposed that the proceeds be donated to Mestre. Email requests to: cdmestrewaldemar (at) gmail (dot) com
- Buy the DVD "Tributo ao Mestre Bigodinho" from o Atelier de Mestre Lua Rasta. The proceeds from this will be donated to Mestre. E-mail requests to: atelierlua (at) hotmail (dot) com
- Visit Mestre because it’s no fun to feel lonely during a hard time. You can contact him by calling his daughter Joanice at: 55 71 3257 98 05 or 55 71 8854 56 80

Once again, we have reached a troubling situation in regard to capoeira mestres in Brazil. Through thousands of processes where rivers of money are spent on contracting professionals – that in many cases aren’t even capoeiristas – to “decide” the destiny of capoeira as a historic patrimony, our true patrimonies (the guardians of culture, as the intellectuals like to say) do not have support of the government in moments like this, that happen all the time.

It falls to us capoeiristas, the people who understand the path of a capoeira mestre , to resolve to, at the very least, lessen the suffering of someone who has dedicated his life to capoeira and who is now facing difficulties buying expensive prescription medicines, pay the bills and at the same time be cared for and fed with the dignity he serves.

For these and for others, we ask for your help. And don’t wait! É hora é hora.

If you can help, let us know!

Mestre Lua Rasta



Reminder about Mexico Event in November

hey everyone: just a reminder that the early registration for the November Mexico event closes on October 15 (Friday!).

Don't wait til the last minute!

For more information about the event, check out our original posting.

Compañer@s y amig@s,

La Fundación Internacional de Capoeira Angola - México (FICA-MX), tiene el placer de invitarlos al 6° Aniversario de la FICA-MX "Tres raíces, una cultura", que se llevará a cabo del día 3 al día 7 de noviembre de 2010, en las ciudades de México y Xalapa, Veracruz.

En este evento participarán Mestre Cobra Mansa (FICA-BA), Mestre Jurandir (FICA-BH), Contramestre Rogério Teber (FICA-MX), Treinel Beto (FICA-Chicago) y Treinel Daniel (FICA-Oakland).

El costo del evento es de $1500 en preventa (hasta el 15 de octubre) y de $1800 después de la fecha indicada.

Las primeras 20 personas que se inscriban al evento tendrán un lugar asegurado en el transporte México-Xalapa-México. Le pedimos a los interesados que se comuniquen con nosotros lo antes posible, los lugares son limitados.

Este será un gran momento para descubrir el universo de la Capoeira Angola, no duden en invitar a todos sus amig@s y familiares.
Esperamos contar con su presencia.


Curitiba, Brazil: 10 Years of ACAD!

Associação de Capoeira Angola Dobrada

Invites all to participate in
the celebration of 10 years of

ACAD Curitiba
November 11 – 15, 2010

Mestre Rogério - ACAD Germany
Mestre Índio - ACAD Italy
Contra-mestre Negão - ACAD Curitiba
Contra-mestre Alexandre -ACAD
Treinel Iran - ACAD BH

Invited Guests: Mestre Peixe -Cosmos RJ & Mestre Manoel - Ypiranga de Pastinha RJ

Location: ACAD Curitiba home, Rua Presidente Faria, 372, sobreloja, Centro

Cost: R$ 60,00
Single day R$ 25,00

contacts: (41) 9626-0713/ 8480-0201/ 3328-8969;
contramestrenegao (at) yahoo (dot) com (dot) br


Porto Velho, Rondônia, Brazil: November Workshops

Workshop 2010
November 23 - 25

Free workshops!

Capoeira Angola workshops with Mestre Cobra Mansa e Contramestre Urubu
in homage of Mestre Pastinha

lectures, workshops, video screenings, bazaar, expositions, stretching, techniques, gingas, instruments, capoeira roda, and a show by Banda Leão do Norte

starting at 6 pm

Teatro Banzeiros
rua Jose do Patrocinio, 512
Centro Porto Velho


Youth in Action in NYC


Njoli from FICA-NY send this write up about their June event for kids:
June 12th-!3th, 2010.

It was the Youth in Action: Service through Movement Conference in NYC. A really beautiful event with workshops taught completely by volunteers from around the city, country and the world. It was a wonderful thing to have such a variety of workshops: african & african brazilian percussion, capoeira movement & music, yoga, health & nutrition, art & the environment. Young people of all ages were with us and the energy was vibrant. Family and friends were there to support and to learn. There were struggles and obstacles (as there are with all events) but in the end, we were so glad for the outcome and look forward to all the opportunities to bring more events like this to the young people in our worldwide capoeira community.

We want to give a huge thanks again to all of guest instructors:

•Treinel Kamau - FICA Philly
•Atlanta Amado Forsyth - Samba
•Aloan Damasceno - FICA Bahia
•Karen Nicely - Yoga
•Stephen Dahmer MD - Health & Nutrition
•Ted Gousse L.Ac. - Health & Nutrition
and to our Mestres for their support and guidance.

Check out our website for even more pictures of this exciting event.

Be well.


Barcelona, Spain: 12 Years of Filhos de Angola

12th Anniversary
Filhos de Angola Barcelona
Mestre Laércio, Contramestre Pezão, Contramestre Gato Preto
November 26 – 28, 2010

Get the details here (in Spanish).

Special Guests: M Laércio, Mestre Valmir, Contramestre Pezão, Contramestre Gato Preto, Contramestre Dirceu, Treineu Gege and others!

Release of new cd: “O jogo da malicia”

Contact: Anderson, (00 34) 651 81 89 89

12º Aniversario Filhos de Angola Barcelona
26, 27 y 28 de Noviembre

Toda la información la encontrareis en nuestro blog.

Con la presencia de:
y otros invitados por confirmar…

Presentación de nuestro nuevo CD : "O jogo da malicia"

contato: Anderson,(00 34) 651 81 89 89


Capoeira in Recife: the Tough Guys & the Troublemakers

We know much about the history of capoeira in Rio de Janeiro thanks to work of Jair Moura and Carlos Eugênio Líbano Soares. Likewise, we have a lot of information about its history in Bahia thanks to the research of Frede Abreu, Antonio Liberac Cardoso Simões Pires, and others. However, there is significantly less known capoeira's past in the city of Recife, the capital of the state of Pernambuco, despite being one of Brazil's largest metropolitan areas and a major port city.

Bernardo Alves, a researcher who wrote a book about capoeira in Pernambuco discussed his findings in an interview with the group CICA (Centro de Instrução de Capoeira Angola) that was published in their journal, Biriba, in April 2002.

In the interview, Alves touches on many different themes: the various identities of capoeiristas of early twentieth century Pernambuco, the consequences of the lack of organization, and the "ethics" of capoeira.

Here is an excerpt of their conversation:
CICA: The fact that the maltas came together to fight, this rivalry between them, shows us that there was not solidarity around this work, but only a shock. Do you think that this also determined the lack of development of capoeira in Pernambuco?

Alves: I don’t believe so. It was more like partisanism. So, there were those that supported the more famous groups of the 4th Infantry Battalion and the guys that supported the other one that was famous, the band of Pedro espanhol, the Espanha. There were the criminals doing security for the officials. They would go there cheering and the capoeiras in the front were doing security work. In truth, they weren’t interested in doing security. They wanted to play. If you took out the capoeiras who were supporting this group, the others would come in and make trouble, breaking it up with clubs. But I will answer your question. So, there was this partisanism. In Bahia, capoeira was preserved because the Bahian preserved capoeira in the academies. If the academies had not been created, the same thing would have happened there that happened here [in Recife]. Those from here were expelled and those from there stayed around. A large majority of capoeiras from Bahia stayed there. So, they transformed this thing into a dance, or something; they disguised it; there was this disguise that did not happen here. I believe that they stopped passing capoeira from generation to generation and it ended. There wasn’t this passing down between generations, and there in Bahia this happened because of the existence of academies… you always have those guys that say no, this is a thing of the people, it has to be spontaneous, it can’t happen in the academies. But if there had not been academies, it would have disappeared in Bahia as well.

CICA: Did you not find any references to organized groups? Be it on the stage or in fights?

Alves: It was a neighborhood thing. The capoeira from Madalena didn’t enter in Coellos. He wouldn’t go under any circumstances. They are tribes. This is a very primitive thing.

CICA: Without a system nor an academy, capoeira here was more about malandragem… So, in the past the only people who practiced capoeira were the tough guys and bullies?

Alves: Yes. Remember that there were these two currents of capoeira in Pernambuco. That this here was the tough guy, and this here was the troublemaker. The tough guy was the guy who was more ethical, had more scruples. And the troublemaker was the guy who wanted to create trouble. He arrived and started fighting. But the tough guy, no. The tough guy was more dangerous than the other. It wasn’t a technical dispute. It was a fight to really knock the other out. Nascimento Grande was a very interesting guy. He was funny, that is, he would knock the other guy down and afterwards, he would carry the guy on his shoulders to the hospital and say, “Look, take good care of this friend of mine, here is some money, ok?”

CICA: Was there any kind of ethics between the capoeiristas in hand-to-hand combat?

Alves: Among the tough guys.

CICA: And among the troublemakers?

Bernardo: Among the troublemakers it was anything goes and a little more.
Extremely interesting! Would you be as genteel as to carry on your shoulder and pay the medical bills of the person you knocked down?

We'll be presenting works that highlight the history of capoeira in other cities over the next few months.

Do you know anything about the roots of capoeira in your city (perhaps you are the roots - especially if you are reading this side of the blog!)?

The whole conversation (in Portuguese) can be found in the FICA-DC archives.


São Paulo, Brazil: Celebrating São Cosme e Damião

4th Festa de São Cosme e Damião
September 26 at 2 pm

Candy and games
Caruru and samba de roda

Rua Conselheiro Ramalho, 945
Bela Vista – São Paulo – SP

This has to be the best poster ever.

Salvador, Brazil: Celebrating 21 Years of Acanne

Acanne presents

November 16 – 21, 2010
Salvador, Bahia

An autonomous body within capoeira
To redefine: this will be the objective of the workshops led by Mestre Renê.

Where, through exercises of corporal un-conditioning, we will look to stimulate the construction of an autonomous identity within capoeira.

Cost: 100 reais, includes feijoada and a place to sleep at the Acanne space.

Location: Rua do Sodré nº48 Dois de julho, next to the Sacred Art Museum

You may register by email. Contact:
mestrerene (at) yahoo (dot) com
acannezion (at) hotmail (dot) com

Telephone contacts:

For a complete schedule of events (in Portuguese, but you’ll understand), which includes classes, lectures, frescobol on the beach, rodas, and parties, click here.


Helsinki, Finland: Workshops with M Valmir

FICA-Helsinki presents

Workshops with Mestre Valmir

November 5 - 7

Friday: 18:00-22:00
Saturday: 11:00-18:00
Sunday: 11:00-18:00

Zodiak, Kaapelitehdas
Tallberginkatu 1

70 euros (60 euros paid before 22.10.)
Friday 25 euros
Saturday 35 euros
Sunday 35 euros

Information & registration:
tapani (at) capoeira-angola (dot) fi


Bogotá, Colombia: Enconter with M Valmir

Mandinga en Colombia 2010
4th International Capoeira Angola Encounter

Mestre Valmir
October 11 - 18
Bogotá, Colombia

Grupo de Estudo
FICA - Bogotá
Fundação Internacional de Capoeira Angola

ficabogota (at) gmail (com) com


Thanks to Fabricio for the poster.


Boston, USA: 16th Annual Roots of Bahia Encounter

"Mestre Bimba meets Mestre Pastinha"

October 29 - 31

Presented by The Brazilian Cultural Center of New England and Mestre Deraldo Academy João Pequeno de Pastinha, Centro Esportivo de Capoeira Angola.

Invited guests: Grand Mestre Joao Grande, Mestre Deraldo Ferreira, Mestre Laercio dos Angos Borges, Mestre Pe de Chumbo, Contra-Mestre Iuri Santos, Mestre Amen Santo, and Mestre Efraim Silva (full bios below).

The Dance Complex
536 Massachusetts Ave
Cambridge, MA


Friday, October 29
Studio 1
5:00-6:00pm Capoeira Angola
6:00-7:00pm Capoeira Angola
7:00-8:00pm Capoeira Angola
8:00-10:00pm Roda

Saturday, October 30
Studio 1
1:30-3:00pm Capoeira Angola
3:00-4:00pm Maculele
4:00-5:30pm Capoeira Angola
5:30-7:00pm Capoeira Angola
7:00-9:00pm Roda

Studio 2
1:30-3:00pm Capoeira Angola
3:00-4:30pm Afro-Brazilian Dance
4:30-6:00pm Capoeira
6:00-7:00pm Capoeira

Sunday, October 31
Studio 1
12:30-1:30 Capoeira Angola
1:30-2:30 Capoeira Angola
2:30-3:30 Capoeira
3:30-6:30 Roda

Studio 2
1:30-3:00 Afro-Brazilian Dance

Price List:
- Friday only: $60
- Saturday only: $90
- Sunday only: $80
- Afro-Brazilian Dance Workshop only: $20
- Full encounter before October 15th: $170 (includes Halloween dance party**)
- Full encounter after October 15: $190 (includes Halloween dance party**)
- Encounter T-shirts: $12

**The Halloween Dance party will be with live Brazilian music and dancing. Groups Samba Tremeterra and Raizes do Forro will perform Saturday night at Ryles Jazz Club - 212 Hampshire St, Cambridge.

Mestre Deraldo Ferreira is Founder and Artistic Director of The Brazilian Cultural Center of New England, one of three Brazilian Cultural Points in the US, designated by then Brazilian Minister of Culture, Gilberto Gil. A Mestre (official master) of Capoeira Angola, Mestre Deraldo brings a 35-year tenure in Capoeira, Samba drumming and dancing, musical composition and choreography. Mestre Deraldo began studying Capoeira at the age of 14. He founded the Academy of Capoeira in his hometown of Santos, Sao Paulo, Brazil, and he became a certified Mestre of Capoeira in 1984. Deraldo studied Capoeira Angola with Grand Mestre João Pequeno de Pastinha, student of Grand Mestre Pastinha, the "father and protector of capoeira" from an early age in Brazil. Grand Mestre João Pequeno graduated Deraldo as a master of Capoeira Angola in 2004. In the 1990’s he founded the Brazilian music and dance ensemble Samba Tremeterra. Mestre Deraldo is a featured music and dance soloist with Osvaldo Golijov’s 'La Pasión Segun San Marcos' in running performances worldwide. He was one of the first to bring Capoeira and Brazilian samba to North America. Over the past 25 years, Mestre Deraldo has taught regular classes at Amherst College, Hampshire College, MIT, Smith College, Wellesley College, Wheaton College, numerous dance and music studios, Canada, and Italy.

Grand Mestre João Grande was born in 1933 in Itagi, Bahia. Grand Mestre Pastinha accepted João as a student at age 20, and made him a master in 1968. After Grand Mestre Pastinha passed in 1981, Grand Mestre João Grande stopped playing Capoeira. Persuaded by Mestre Moraes he returned in the mid-1980's. In 1989 Jelon Vieira invited him to the U.S. and he returned in 1990 to present Capoeira Angola in Atlanta and New York; he has been teaching in New York ever since. He received a Doctorate of Humane Letters from Upsala College in 1995, and the National Heritage Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts in 2001.

Mestre Laércio dos Anjos Borges was born in Salvador, Bahia, in 1966, and started learning Capoeira in 1978. Mestre Laércio is a founding member of the Grupo Filhos de Angola (1984) and the Associação Brasileira de Capoeira Angola (1991). He currently lives and teaches in Berlin and gives workshops throughout Europe. He is keenly dedicated to teaching the art, knowledge, philosophy and awareness of Capoeira Angola in Europe in a dynamic manner.

Mestre Pé de Chumbo, born in 1964 in Floresta Azul, Bahia, began practicing Capoeira at age 10. In 1981, he began training with Grand Mestres João Grande and Grand Mestre João Pequeno, who graduated him as a mestre. Mestre Pé de Chumbo continues to remain close to Grand Mestre João Pequeno (93 yrs old) and is committed to teaching the traditional Capoeira he learned under this great Capoeira Mestre. He has established schools in Brazil, Europe, Mexico, the U.S. and in Germany, where he now resides.

Contra-Mestre Iuri Santos grew up immersed in the rich Afro-Brazilian culture of Salvador, Bahia, where he learned the art of Capoeira Angola. In 1998, he moved to Indiana and founded North Star Capoeira. Iuri teaches Capoeira at Indiana University, IUPUI, in Bloomington and in Indianapolis.

Mestre Amen Santo, born and raised in Salvador, Bahia, is a mestre of Capoeira and master drummer and dance teacher. He began Capoeira with Mestre Waldemar da Paixão and Mestre Avila. In 1989 he founded the Brasil Brasil Cultural Center and the Capoeira Batuque Academy, in Los Angeles. He has been honored in the Martial Arts Hall of Fame, and as a pioneer by the World Sokeship Council.

Mestre Efraim Silva was born in 1964, in Guaruja, São Paulo. He learned Capoeira under Mestres Trindade and Humberto. He moved to the U.S. in 1989 and received a Master of Capoeira certificate from the São Paulo Federation of Capoeira in 1994. He teaches at Yale among other schools and is the Artistic Director of Afro-Brazilian Performing Arts of CT and Ginga Brasileira Dance Company.

Call 617-388-8403 or 617-407-6525 to sign up and spread the word!


Hamburg, Germany: 7th International Encounter

7th International Encounter
Hamburg, Germany

September 23 - 26

Mestre Robson Bocao - Grande Pequeno Sou Eu
Contra Mestre Silvinho - Capoeira Angola Mae
Contra Mestre Moreira - Escola Mukambu

Professor Charel - Angoleiros do Mar
Professor Geyson - Escola Mukambu
Professor Papagaio - Ginga Camará
Professora Moranguinho - Grande Pequeno Sou Eu

Treinel Ceguinho - Grande Pequeno Sou Eu
Treinel Cabecao - Grande Pequeno Sou Eu
Treinel Angolinha - Grande Pequeno Sou Eu


25 years of Capoeira: MESTRE ROBSON BOCÃO.

Like every year in September - as a tradition of our group, a workshop will take place on this festive occasion besides to celebrate a birthday at the same time. A 'get together' of mestres, professores and various other guests - invited from all over the world of Capoeira!

Special guest:
MESTRE LITO [Colorado - Paraná - Brasil]
Mestre Bocão's first and always honoured teacher in Capoeira.

This weekend we celebrate not only more than 25 years of life dedicated to Capoeira approved as an always faithful companion - it is also the perfect chance to get deeper into this fascinating, inspiring and sage art of lived culture by encountering the intensive spiritual energy of Capoeira at this 'convivência' [live together].

"Beyond the aspect of martial arts Capoeira is understood as a vivid philosophy of life manifested in rhythm, movements, music and chant."[Homepage]

In this spirit...

Axé para a Capoeira!

If you want to participate the workshop send a message to either:
Bocaoangola (at) web.de
moranguinho (at) email.de

For planning this event accordingly - please register yourself as soon as you know you will be part of!

Fee: 120,- EUR.

For more information just give us a phone call! +0049-(0)40-415 496 78 or +0049-(0)40-413 507 53.

... or visit us on facebook...


São Paulo, Brazil: Batendo Tambor with Lots of Mestres

4th Encounter

Escola Cultural Zungu Capoeira

“Batendo Tambor”
September 16 - 19

Rua Almirante Marques Leão, 787
Bela Vista
São Paulo, Brazil

Mestre Ananias & group

Invited guests: Mestre Bigo (Francisco 45), Mestre Cobra Manas, Mestre Móa do Katendê, Mestre Russo de Caxais, Mestre Lua Rasta, MEstre Barrão, Mestre Negoativo, Mestre Ray

For more information, call:
(11) 23081306
(11) 81788486 (Cacá)
(11) 84165234 (Cabeleira)


Inglewood, California, USA: Workshops with M João Grande

Workshop with Mestre João Grande
Presented by Capoeira Angola Center Ngolo Arts

October 8 - 11, 2010

Chuco’s Justice Center
1137 E. Redondo Blvd.
Inglewood, CA 90302

Capoeira icon and master teacher Mestre João Grande will be teaching movement, music and song of the the ancient African-Brazilian tradition of Capoeira Angola in the tradition of his teacher, Mestre Pastinha. Everyone is welcome to participate, regardless of experience, style, school, gender or age!

There will also be Samba and other arts taught and exhibited at this event. We will keep you all posted.

Register early for workshop discounts:
$150 for Friday thru Monday, $50 per day up to October 3, 2010
$175 for Friday thru Monday, $75 per day, $40 half day after October 3, 2010
$20 for each roda (Friday, Saturday, Sunday evening)
Youth under 18 can participate for free!

To preregister, make out money order or cashier’s check to Ngolo Arts Preservation Society and send to:

James Simmons
Capoeira Angola Center Ngolo Arts
P.O. Box 431368
Los Angeles, CA 90043

We hope you will all take the time and collect your dollars, dimes, nickles and quarters to take advantage of learning from this great elder of this beautiful art.

If you can't make it to New York, L.A. is the place to train with Mestre João Grande!

Call Uncle James at 424-200-4968 for more information.


Philadelphia, USA: Beginners' Session

Hey folks, if you have a friend in Philly who is interested in capoeira, let them know about this great class!

Interested in Afro-brazilian music? Culture? Dance? Martial Arts?

Then come join us for our Fall 2010 Beginner's Session!

September 20 - October 20 (10 classes)
Mondays and Wednesdays from 7:00pm - 8:30pm

MLK Recreation Center, 22nd and Cecil B. Moore Avenue

$90 (includes class t-shirt)

This program of 10 classes will focus on the basic movements, philosophy, and instrumentation of Capoeira Angola.



Chicago, USA: Workshops with M Valmir

Workshops with Mestre Valmir
of FICA-Bahia

September 7 - 12

Quilombo Cultural Center
1757 N. Kimball Avenue
Chicago, IL

Classes will be as follows:

tuesday: 7pm to 9:30pm
wednesday: 7pm to 9:30pm
thursday: 7pm to 9:30pm
friday: 7pm to 10pm
saturday: 11am to 1pm & 3pm to 6pm
sunday: 1pm to 4pm RODA

Classes are open to all. Not recommended for first timers.

Investment: $20/class
$45/3 classes

Questions: info (at) quilombocenter (dot) org
or call 773.227.8879


el DF, Mexico: 6th Anniversary in November


6th Anniversary of FICA-Mexico

Tres raíces, una cultura
3 Roots, One Culture

3 – 7 of November
D.F. & Xalapa, Veracruz

Invited guests: Mestres Cobra Mansa, Jurandir, Contramestre Rogério Teber

Space is limited. Registration will close on October 15.

More information coming soon.

Contact: ficamexico (at) yahoo (dot) com

“ FICA-Mexico will provide transportation between the two cities.


La Fundación Internacional de Capoeira Angola - México (FICA-Mx), el contramestre Rogério Teber y alumnos, tienen el placer de invitarlos al "6° Aniversario de la FICA-Mx: Tres raíces, una cultura", que se llevará a cabo del día 3 al día 7 de noviembre de 2010, en las ciudades de México y Xalapa, Veracruz.

En este evento participarán Mestre Cobra Mansa, Mestre Jurandir, el Contramestre Rogério Teber y estarán presentes treneus y alumnos avanzados de la FICA. La posible presencia de Mestre Manoel (grupo Ypiranga de Pastinha, Rio de Janeiro) está por confirmarse.

Más adelante les comunicaremos los costos de este gran encuentro, así como su contenido y programación.

Además, la FICA-Mx organizará el transporte México D.F./Xalapa y Xalapa/D.F. Le pedimos a los interesados que se comuniquen con nosotros lo antes posible, los lugares son limitados y la fecha límite de inscripción es el 15 de octubre.

Este será un gran momento para descubrir el universo de la Capoeira Angola, no duden en invitar a todos sus amig@s y familiares.
Esperamos contar con su presencia.

Saludos afectuosos,