Nossas Referências: How was living with the old mestres, something that is already distant from the young generations?
M Lua Rasta: Man, life in those days, it was the old mestres who maintained this resistance, a resistance that was at times even naïve. But they were our role models. Waldemar, Mestre Canjiquinha, Mestre Bimba, Mestre Bobó, these guys were our leaders, they were the guys that, damn, idolizing has nothing to do with it, but we believed in them!!! Canjiquinha was a hero for me. He was a capoeirista who participated in a ton of films. You see a film like Barravento or O Pagador de Promessas, and the whole theatrical part, the performances , the culture, the production crew left it all in his hands; he was the one who gave the flavor of the popular culture to the film… Mestre Caiçara was another guy who was really good, in the era when Bahia had a lot of mysticism. Even this has been lost…Mestre Caiçara of Oxossi, damn, the guy was of Oxossi, which at the time was something strong, understand? Oxossi, the orixá of the forests. It was great to live with Mestre Caiçara in day-to-day life and see his way of being. Mestre Caiçara was a totally radical guy, totally rebelling against society, the system, the police system. All this was very important for people today who are 45 and 60 years old- resistance, you know? Real political resistance! Today a lot of people say, “Ah, but the old mestres played by the system’s rules.” No, but it was different, today it’s we who play by the rules of the system,in that era it was the system who played by their rules…
Thanks to ShaynaM for the translation. You can read her entire translation (the original was done in Portuguese) at her website.
The whole thing is available for your further enlightment in our archives.
**If you have an interview with your mestre or teacher that you would like to see posted, please email it to us. We can do the translation English <-> Portuguese.