Mestre of the month

Mestre Leopoldina

‘Dermeval Lopes de Lacerda’

(Dec 2nd 1933 – Oct 17th 2007)

Mestre Leopoldina passed away at the age of 74 in Sao Paulo Brazil.

Leopoldina’s live story starts less prosperous in Rio de Janeiro though. He didn’t grow up with his own mother and therefore he was often beaten and neglected. At a certain age he decided to leave his home. He slept in train wagons and made living selling sweets at public places. He started to make up rhymes to enhance his selling and also started to sell in the trains. People say he was nicknamed after one of Rio’s train stations, but he states that his nickname was after a locomotive he used to imitate. Having lived like this for a while Leopoldina heard of a place were street children were sheltered and fed. This made the struggle a bit easier.

Somewhere in 1952 or ’53 at the age of nineteen was the first time Leopoldina encountered Capoeira. He saw a guy named ‘Quinzinho’ leaping from left to right, standing on his feet and next on his hands. Leopoldina thought:’ Wow, I want to learn that stuff’. In order to do so he had to get nearer to his only example (Capoeira had been prohibited till that time and was therefore nearly absent in public live). This guy Quinzinho was a ‘malandro’ (as in criminal). Just a month before him being released from five years of imprisonment, Leopoldina started to go to the bars frequented by Quinzinho and offered him beers.

One of those occasions all of a sudden Quinzinho grasped Leopoldina’s hat challenging him to a fight. Leopoldina had a reputation as a street fighter to live up to. But at every move he made, Quinzinho easily leaped away. Finally Leopoldina had to give up. He was scared, but knew he had to come up with something. He left for the place where he hid his knife. On his way someone, seeing how upset Leopoldina was, stopped him to find out what was going on. Explaining him, Leopoldina spotted the boy to whom Quinzinho had given the hat, still wearing it. Leopoldina took it back and used other routes for a while. One day he was waiting at the final stop for the bus to come. When it arrived, first six of Quinzinho’s friends and finally Quinzinho himself came out.
When Quinzinho saw that all of his friends were happy to see Leopoldina again, he smiled and accepted him as part of the group. Now Leopoldina felt confident to reveal his wish to learn Capoeira. The first morning he arrived at Quinzinho’s house in a Favela, Quinzinho had already left. But from the next day on he came every day at seven to train with Quinzinho at the front of his house. Quinzinho would show him a movement and ask him to imitate it. Quinzinho didn’t use any names for the  movements.
After three or four months they could play together and Leopoldina was joining in Quinzinho’s fame, because he was the only one that could play with him. One day the two came across someone who could also play. This guy was called ‘Juvenil’. He invited Leopoldina to come play a little. When Juvenil struck Leopoldina with a ‘meia-lua’, Quinzinho pulled his gun and put it on Juvenil’s head saying: “Don’t do that. You will make him afraid to learn”. One of the other adventures Leopoldina had with Quinzinho was when the latter made him drink a few shots of straight cachaça (sugarcane liquor) before training. It made Leopoldina so sick and dizzy, that he kept easy on the stuff for the rest of his life. Finally Quinzinho got killed in a dispute over a woman. Now Leopoldina had to train by himself. He would do so on a soccer field, very early in the morning: “Otherwise people would say I was some lunatic!”.

The next capoeirista whom Leopoldina met was called Artur Emidio. He was top performer at the Waldemar Santana Academy. The owner of the academy had heard that Leopoldina could play Capoeira and invited him to come see the performance. Leopoldina entered a new world on the day of that performance. At first he even wondered if Artur was gay. Leopoldina was used to the dressing code of the malandros: wearing toe slippers and a scarf around his neck. The people at the academy were of different social standing. Though after Artur had done his solo, Leopoldina knew he had found a better player then Quinzinho. Artur had heard another capoeirista was present and invited him to come and play. Leopoldina made a good impression on Artur, because he invited Leopoldina to come to his lesson. The new contacts Leopoldina made in this group got him a job of which he enjoyed a pension until the day of his death. This is how Capoeira got Mestre Leopoldina ‘out of marginality into society.’

Mestre Leopoldina trained six years with Mestre Artur Emidio.

Mestre Leopoldina is resting in a very special place we all know because he were a very special kid, man, malandro, friend, son, father, brother and Mestre.

‘Onde quer que o Senhor esteja Mestre Leopoldina, a Capoeira e nós seus verdadeiros e nobres amigos sempre estaremos juntos’

Mestre Val Boa Morte

Ganga Zumbí
Mestre Leopoldinha

Alguém me disse
Que pareço Ganga Zumbí
Foi o Rei lá dos Palmares
Outros já me disseram
Que na outra encarnação
Eu era rico, muito rico
Que eu tinha muitas fazendas
E grande canavial
E eu era um bom patrão
Só mulher eu tinha nove
só mulher eu tinha nove
Com idade variada
Mais agora, o que eu tenho?
Nem sequer tenho casa pra morar
e nem dinheiro pra gastar
Mas tenho a Graça Divina
Que é a minha companheira
E esta grande amizade
Dentro do meu coração, camarada…Iê Galo Cantou…
Someone told me
I look like Ganga Zumbí
He was the king in Palmares
Others already told me
That in another incarnation
I was rich, very rich
I had a lot of farms
And a big sugar cane plantation
I was a good boss
Just women I had nineJust women I had nine
Of different ages
But now what do I have?
Not even a house to live in
Nor money to spend
But I have the divine grace
Which is my companionAnd that great friendship
Deep in my heart, comrade

 

MESTRE OF THE MONTH – Mestre Bimba

Mestre Bimba

‘Manuel Dos Reis Machado’

November 23, 1899 – February 5, 1974

February 5th – The Anniversary of Mestre Bimba’s Death

The Creator of Capoeira Regional

MESTRE BIMBA’s MONTH

February @ Capoeira Filhos da Bahia School

Come & Enjoy learning

“Mestre Bimba Style” CAPOEIRA REGIONAL

Let’s all SHARE THE BRILLIANCE of MESTRE BIMBA’s Capoeira

The son of Luiz Cândido Machado and Maria Martinha do Bonfim, Manuel dos Reis Machado known famously as Mestre Bimba was born on November 23rd, 1900, at the “Bairro do Engenho Velho” in Salvador, Brazil. The nickname “Bimba” came up due to a bet between his mother and the midwife during his birth; his mother bet that he was going to be a girl and the midwife bet he would be a boy. After he was delivered, the midwife said it’s a boy, look at his “bimba” (penis). He started learning Capoeira when he was 12 years old, with a capitão da Companhia Baiana de Navegação from Estrada das Boiadas in Salvador called Bentinho, even though, in those days, the authorities were still persecuting Capoeira. He would later be known as one half of the legendary founding fathers of contemporary Capoeira. The other would be Mestre Pastinha, the father of Capoeira Angola.

The Birth of the Regional Style

At 18, Bimba felt that Capoeira had lost all its efficiency as a martial art and resistance, becoming a folkloric activity, reduced to nine movements. It was then that Bimba started to retrieve movements from the original Capoeira fights and added movements from another African fight called Batuque – a vicious grappling type of martial art that he learned from his father, as well as introducing movements created by himself. This was the beginning of the development of Capoeira Regional.

In 1928, a new chapter in the history of Capoeira begun, as well as a change in the way black people were looked upon by the Brazilian society. After a performance at the palace of Bahia’s Governor, Juracy Magalhães, Mestre Bimba was finally successful in convincing the authorities of the cultural value of Capoeira, thus ending the official ban in the 1930’s.

Mestre Bimba founded the first Capoeira School in 1932, the Academia-escola de Capoeira Regional, at the Engenho de Brotas in Salvador, Bahia. Previously, Capoeira was only practiced and played on the streets. However, Capoeira was still heavily discriminated by upper class Brazilian society. In order to change the slyness, stealthy and malicious reputation associated with Capoeira practitioners at that time, Bimba set new standards to the art.

His students had to wear a clean, white uniform, show proof of grade proficiency from school, show good posture and many other standards. As a result, doctors, lawyers, politicians, upper middle class people, and women started to join his school, providing Bimba with better support.

Capoeira Regional is Established

In 1936, Bimba challenged fighters of any martial art style to test his Regional style. He had four matches, fighting against Vítor Benedito Lopes, Henrique Bahia, José Custódio dos Santos and Américo Ciência. Bimba won all matches.

In 1937, he earned the state board of education certificate after he was invited to demonstrate Capoeira to the President of Brazil at that time, Getúlio Dorneles Vargas.

In 1942, Mestre Bimba opened his second school at the Terreiro de Jesus – rua das Laranjeiras; today rua Francisco Muniz Barreto. The school is open until today and supervised by his former student, “Vermelho”. He also taught capoeira to the army and at the police academy. He was than considered “the father of modern Capoeira”.

Important names to the Brazilian society at that time such as Dr. Joaquim de Araújo Lima , Jaime Tavares, Rui Gouveia, Alberto Barreto, Jaime Machado, Delsimar Cavalvanti, César Sá, Decio Seabra, José Sisnando and many others were Bimba’s students.

Bimba’s Legacy

Mestre Bimba was a coalman, carpenter, warehouse man, longshoreman, horse coach conductor, but mainly Capoeirista; a giant with strong personality! Unhappy with false promises and lack of support from local authorities in Bahia, he moved to Goiânia in 1973 by invitation from a former student. He died a year later, on February 5th, 1974 at theHospital das Clínicas de Goiânia due to a stroke.

Bimba managed to recover the original values within Capoeira, which were used amongst the black slaves centuries before him. For Bimba, Capoeira was a fight but “competition” should be permanently avoided since he believed it was a “cooperation” fight, where the stronger player was always responsible for the weaker player and helped him to excel in his own fighting techniques.

Mestre Bimba fought all his life for what he strongly believed was best for Capoeira and succeeded. After he died in 1974 one of his sons, Mestre Nenel , at 14, took over his father’s Capoeira academy. Mestre Nenel is still responsible for the remarkable cultural and historical legacy his father left him and he is the President of Filhos de Bimba School of Capoeira.

Bimba’s Academy Rules

Bimba strongly believed Capoeira had an extraordinary value as a self-defence martial art, hence his efforts to develop its learning in a structured and methodical way.

Bimba developed a Capoeira teaching method with commandments, principles and traditions , which are still part of the Capoeira Regional up to this day. Some of his commandments are:

  • To stop smoking and drinking since it interferes with the players’ performance
  • To avoid demonstrating one’s progression as a Capoeira player outside the academy
  • Avoid conversation during training, instead observe and learn from watching
  • Practice daily the basic fundamentals
  • Do not be afraid to come close to your opponent – the closer that you get, the more you will learn
  • Keep your body relaxed
  • It is better to get beat up in the roda than on the streets

Bimba also established his own Capoeira principles to fundament his Capoeira teaching method:

  • “ Gingar sempre”  (to Ginga always) “Ginga” is the Capoeira basic movement
  • “ Esquivar sempre ” (to Esquiva always)
  • All movements must have a purpose
  • To preserve a constant fixed position on the ground
  • To play according to the rhythm determined by the berimbau
  • To respect a player when he/she can no longer defend an attack movement
  • To protect the opponent’s physical and moral integrity

Consequently, Bimba created several traditions and rituals to support his methodology:

  • A chair was used in order to train beginner students/players
  • The “ charanga ” is the Capoeira orchestra, composed by a berimbau and two pandeiros
  • The singing, songs composed by Bimba to accompany the game
  • The “ batizado ”

The aspects that still makes Capoeira Regional so peculiar and outstanding is its method:

  • Admission exam;
  • The “ sequência ”  of the basic 17 Capoeira attack and defence movements
  • Practice of the different rhythms of the game
  • Specific movements: traumatizing, projection, connected and unbalancing
  • Practice of “ cintura desprezada ”
  • “ Formatura ”
  • “ Especializacdo ” and “ emboscada ”

February @ CFdB School

Come & Enjoy learning “Mestre Bimba Style” CAPOEIRA REGIONAL

In commemoration of the Anniversary of his Death, we’ll be learning Mestre Bimba’s Sequences, Music & Games during FEBRUARY – from MONDAY 4th Feb – SATURDAY 16th Feb 2013!!

  • Capoeira Regional Workshops, Rodas, Music & more…
  • Come & Join in! Share in the ENERGY – Have fun!

So, let’s all SHARE THE BRILLIANCE of MESTRE BIMBA’s Capoeira with our friends & loved ones!

mestre bimba

Mestre of the month

Mestre Pastinha

‘Vincente Ferreira Pastinha’

(April 5th 1889 – November 13th 1981)

Mestre Pastinha played capoeira for more than eighty years. His father was a Spaniard, his mother an African. He was taught capoeira by an African from Angola, Mestre Benidito.
Benidito had seen the ten year old Pastinha, who was a very small boy being beaten by a stronger boy. Afterwards, he told Pastinha that if he came to his house he would be taught something very valuable. Benidito was of course talking about Capoeira Angola or n`golo as he called it. Pastinha was a brilliant capoeirista whose game was characterized by agility, quickness and intelligence. Pastinha was the great traditionalist. Pastinha wanted his students to understand the practice, philosophy and tradition of pure Capoeira Angola.

It is said that in the early days of Capoeira, Capoeira was called many things including:

 

 Capoeira is everything that goes through the mouth?

Brincadeira de Angola

Vadiacâo

Jôgo de Angola

Malandragem

Capoeira Angola

 

 

 

 

 

Mestre Pastinha once said:
I practice the true Capoeira Angola and in my school they learn to be sincere and just. That is the Angola law. I inherited it from my grandfather. It is the law of loyalty. The Capoeira that I learnt, I did not change it in my school … When my students go on, they go on to know about everything. They know: this is fight, this is cunning. We must be calm. It is not an offensive fight. Capoeira waits… The good Capoeira needs to be able to cry at the foot of the aggressor, he is crying but his eyes and spirit is active. Capoeiristas do not like to be grabbed, he does not like to turn the corner with his chest open. The good capoeirista must know how to sing, play Capoeira and instruments of Capoeira.

He was a composer who wrote many Capoeira songs. He also loved to talk and philosophise about Capoeira:

Capoeira is at a time a dance and a religion.
Capoeira is the special magic (mandinga) of slaves in there longing for freedom. Its’ essence/origins/philosophy doesn’t have methods, its end is inconceivable to the more knowledgable capoeirista.

…The code of honour is indispensable …. To be obeyed by the capoeiristas, therefore…. ” It is the control of the game “… for the judge… for the rules… regulations… and for the rhythm of the orchestra… ” That it prevents the violence and the accidents “…

Mestre Pastinha is without a doubt the most famous of all the Capoeira Angola Mestres but please let us not forget the other great Angoleiros of that time. For at that time to go to a Capoeira Angola School or academy was unheard of. One would pick out a “teacher” and hopefully he would teach you or it was also common to go to a roda and try to pick up some movements and practise in private. I believe that in this way Capoeira Angola was able to keep the individual style, mystique and unpredictability so comman to Capoeira Angola. This is opposed to a “teacher” offering his services to all who showed interest.

Mestre Pastinha opened the first Capoeira Angola School.
The Academia De Capoeira Angola, in 1941 in the city of Salvador, Bahia, Brazil. Some say in response to the fact that regional players had lost contact with the roots and context of Capoeira, Promoting Competition and grading. The object is to try to keep as sincere to the roots as possible. Hence the addition Angola. He would say to his students…

Capoeira Angola can only be taught without force, but naturally. For the person to learn, you must make good use of free gestures. Each owns his own way to play and know one plays like me. In my students lies the wisdom of what I know, I can see it in them each one is his own.

Mestre Pastinha dedicated his school to preserving and continuing the long tradition of this African art form. Only after he died did he receive the recognition he deserved. In a brochure celebrating his hundredth birthday the state of Bahia declared him the heritage of Bahia.

Mestre Val Boa Morte

[morfeo_basic 6 /]

Mestre Pastinha

Mestre Ezequiel

Toda Bahia chorou – repite

No dia em que a Capoeira de Angola, perdeu o seu protetor

Mestre Pastinha foi embora / Oxalá que os levou

Lá pras terras de Aruanda / mais ninguém se comformou

Chorou general menino / chorou mocinha doutor

Preta velha, feiticeira / Oganzí, Babálaô

Berimbau tocou Iúna / num toque triste de morte

A Capoeira foi jogada / ao som da triste canção

Da boca do mandigueiro / de dentro do coração

Mas não ouve na Bahia

Quem não cantasse esse refrão – repite

IÊ, vai lá menino / mostra o que o mestre ensinou

Mostra que arrancaram a planta / Mais a semente brotou

E se for bem cultivada / dará bom fruto e bela flor

Ai, ai, aidê / O aide, aide, aidê

AI, AI, AIDÊ

Mestre Pastinha eu canto pra você….

Mestre of the Month

Mestre Nô

Norival Moreira de Oliveira was born in Coroa, Itaparica, Salvador, Bahia, Brazil on June 22, 1945. At 7, Norival and his family moved to Massaranduba, a poor neighborhood not far from the church of Bomfim. Mestre Nilton and Mestre Cutica, brothers and highly respected capoeiristas who lived down the block, took young Norival to meet the elder masters Pirró and Zeca. Pirró, Zeca and Nilton organized and commanded many capoeira rodas in the streets.

Norival began playing in the mestre’s rodas and in 1965 he started teaching in his own academy. Mestre No founded Capoeira Academies Retintos, Orixas da Bahia and Capoeira Palmares. He has taught to thousands of capoeristas. He is founder, president, and grand master of Associacao Brasileira Cultural de Capoeira Palmares (ABCCP) an organization dedicated to teaching, promoting and maintaining the traditions of Capoeira Angola.

Today, Mestre No lives with his wife, children and grand children in Boca do Rio, Salvador. He teaches capoeira in Pituba and travels throughtout Brazil in the US and other parts of the world.

[morfeo_basic 18 /] 

MESTRE OF THE MONTH

MESTRE BOA GENTE

Mestre Boa Gente (born: Vivaldo Conceição Rodrigues) was born in May 17th 1945, in Ibicarai, in the South of Bahia, Brazil

Capoeira Angola captured his heart and soul in 1956 in Ilhéus after watching teachers João Grande, João Pequeno and Antônio Cabeceiro, among others, play capoeira during the celebration of St. Sebastian, patron saint of the city. There he began his journey with mestre Antônio Cabeceiro, on the streets of Ilhéus. He learnt capoeira in the same manner with which the slaves learnt to play in “capoeiras” (cleared areas in the jungle), by watching others and applying what he saw in the roda, because at that time there were no Capoeira schools in Ilhéus. Then, by virtue of fate, he went to Salvador. Finding his brother Dominguinhos, he trained at the “Escola Baiana de Capoeira Angola “ (Capoeira Angola School of Bahia) with Mestre Gato for several years.

When Valdemar Santana, the “Black Leopard” (Leopardo Negro), Brazilian champion of MMA (wrestling) at the time, visited the Escola Baiana de Capoeira Angola, The “Black Leopard” was so impressed by the student Boa Gente, he invited him to join his MMA academy. As always, an engaging and dedicated student, Boa Gente became the MMA champion of Bahia in 1974.

In 1972, when Boa Gente attended a presentation of the “Sons of Oba” in Casa de Pedra, where he trained Capoeira, he was invited by Professor Lee to train Korean Karate. Along with Professor Lee, Boa Gente founded the Tae kwon-do Association of Bahia, and he continued to train there for some time.

Part of Boa Gente’s training of MMA included visiting other gyms and academies. When Boa Gente went to train at the Academy of Mestre Bimba, who had gone to Rio de Janeiro, mestre Vermelho 27 had taken over the training at the academy, providing the hard-training that Boa Gente needed. After this visit he was invited by mestre Vermelho 27 to train with him and from there Mestre Boa Gente went on to found the “Associação de Capoeira Mestre Boa Gente “ (Association of Capoeira Mestre Boa Gente) in 1981.

Thereafter Mestre Boa Gente devoted his life to social work in “Vale das Pedrinhas”, “Nordeste de Amaralina”, Santa Cruz and about 17 years of teaching at the College of São Paulo, one of the most respected institutions in the State of Bahia. He has taught workshops, courses and lectures throughout Brazil, the United States (New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Las Vegas), Europe (Lisbon, Portugal) and Australia, and has become one of the pioneers in teaching Capoeira to children and adolescents in schools to aid learning development.

Today, Mestre Boa Gente still teaches and supervises classes daily in the area called “Vale das Pedrinhas“.

[morfeo_basic 17 /]

HOMEN VALENTE


Cuidado com quem é esse homem!
Cuidado com quem é esse homem!
Esse homem é valente,
na fazenda Caco Velho
Colega vê, matou muito de gente
Vou me embora meu irmão,
vou sair dessa parada!
A roda tâ muita boa,
mas vai ter muita porrada!
Se nao respeitar o mestre,
Colega vê levar uma Cabeçada!
Se tiver com uma navalha,
vaï tomar muita pancada!
Tudo isso é brincadeira,
Colega vê quem briga nao tâ com nada!

Camaradinha, é hora é hora
Iê é hora é hora, camara!
Iê vamos embora!
Iê vamos embora camara!
Pelo mundo afora,
Iê pelo mundo afora, camara!
Oï aï aï Aquinderrê!
Iê Aquiberrê, camara!
Oï aï aï quem me pega!
Iê quem me pega, camara!
Oï na mandinga!
Iê na mandinga, camara!
Oï aï aï da capoeira!
Iê da capoeira, camara!
Oï o menino é bom!
Iê o menino é bom, camara!
Iê sabe jogar!
Iê sabe jogar, camara!
oï ele é cabeceiro!
Iê ele é cabeceiro, camara!
Iê ele é mandiguegueiro

Iê ele é mandiguegueiro camará

THANK YOU NOTE from Mestre Val Boa Morte

THANKS EVERYONE FOR YOUR SUPPORT

of Capoeira Filhos da Bahia 18th International Capoeira Encounter – AUSTRALIA 2011

Our 18th International Capoeira Encounter was great, Thanks to Mestre Boa Gente, Mestre Amen, Mestre Tonho Materia, Mestre Gilson, Contra-Mestres Borracha and Dinho Boa Morte, Professores Stralinho and Christopher, Sydney Energia da Bahia students, Ana Carla, all my students, Neda, Mark, Copacabana and all the local businesses for being with us and helping to support the CAO and Capoeira Filhos da Bahia School.

Axe to you all,

Mestre Val Boa Morte

Visit this NOTE on Facebook

See Mestre Val’s EVENT Photos on Facebook

See Mestre Val’s KIDS BATIZADO Photos on Facebook

CAO – Capoeira Arts Organisation

Capoeira Filhos da Bahia

& Mestre Val Boa Morte

would like to extend our heartfelt gratitude

to the following businesses

for their donations and kind contributions in supporting


Capoeira Filhos da Bahia’s

18th International Capoeira Encounter

AUSTRALIA 2011

CAFE ENTREE

COPACABANA INTERNATIONAL

FILA SPORTS OUTLET

FOO DOOS CAFE

FRIENDS OF THE EARTH CAFE

KRINKI

SAFEWAY/ WOOLWORTHS SUPERMARKET

SAM’S CASH EXPRESS

SMITH ST. CYCLES

SONSA FOODS

Also,

BRAND NiU

HAMMER & TONGS – GRAPHIC DESIGN

NEDA RAHMANI & MARRS COIRO

POKEH DESIGN

SISTANATIVE

TUMBARUMBA

Mestre of the Month

Mestre Paulo dos Anjos

‘José Paulo dos Anjos’

August 15, 1936 – March 26, 1999

 

Few of today’s Capoeira practitioners stick so close to the art’s traditions and originality as José Paulo dos Anjos.

Mestre Paulo dos Anjos was known as one of the most skilled and versatile Angoleiros of the century. He strongly resisted the attempts to incorporate the changes and fads of modern Capoeira into the traditional art. “For me, nothing has changed. I continue practicing Capoeira Angola according to tradition,” he used to say.
Mestre Paulo was born on August 15th, 1936 in the town of Instance in Sergipe. He moved to Bahia and started work young as a result of the early death of his father. Being the eldest of his brothers, he assumed the responsibility of helping to raise them with his mother. At 14 years old, Mestre Paulo made a name for himself in Salvador as a promising boxer. Later he met Master Canjiquinha, who introduced him to Capoeira. The young Paulo began to frequent the rodas of the Bahian cities, including the rodas of Mestre Pastinha’s academy. In street festivals, his technique and abilities began to attract everyone’s attention. From then on, time would transform him into a master, graduated by Mestre Canjiquinha himself. He also spent time with Mestre Gato Preto, teaching with him in Bahia and also in São Paulo.

With his own style of singing the Capoeira Angola songs, Mestre Paulo dos Anjos was venerated by all. He seemed to have an “orchestra” in his throat. He became widely respected in the Capoeira world and recorded some songs on a CD combining his unique style with the musical tradition of Capoeira. Alongside Mestre Gato Preto, he gave classes on Itaparica Island as well as other places in the metropolitan region of Salvador. His unique way of playing Capoeira helped keep alive the wit of his master and was enjoyed by all other masters alike.

In the 1970s, preoccupied with the direction of Capoeira Angola, Mestre Paulo dos Anjos decided to go to Sao Paulo in order to transmit the teachings of his master. He moved there for five years and in São José dos Campos, he formed the group Anjos de Angola (Angels of Angola). In 1978 he won the Capoeira championship at the Pacaembu Gymnasium in the state capital. However, Mestre Paulo found that he was very little understood in Sao Paulo, making it difficult to keep alive the Capoeira Angola tradition.

 Thus, he returned to Salvador in 1980 and influenced the movement of capoeiristas fighting for better working conditions. Upon his return, he also gathered his followers and told them of the wise decision that from now on he would work with underprivileged children, using Capoeira as a vehicle against ignorance and indifference. Indeed, Mestre Paulo was among the first to believe that through Capoeira, it would be possible to train people to learn critical and creative thinking, interacting positively with the world in which they live.

In 1987, he led the Brazilian Capoeira Angola Association and combined his Capoeira work with his activities as a civil servant in Salvador’s town hall. Many of his students have now become Masters and Professors with their own academies around the world. Past students are Virgílio do Retiro, Jaime de Mar Grande, Jorge Satélite, Pássaro Preto, Amâncio, Neguinho, Renê, Alfredo, Djalma, Galego, Mala, Josias, Cabeção, Jequié, Feijão, Vital, and Al Capone, among others.

 [morfeo_basic 15 /]

Mestre Paulo dos Anjos passed away on March 26, 1999 in Salvador, the victim of an infection contracted after a surgery in a local hospital. His death represents the loss of not only a very distinguished human being, but also an irreparable loss for Capoeira, especially the lineage of Capoeira Angola.

Mestre Val Boa Morte

Assisted By Elisa Osegueda ‘Passarinha’ 

MESTRE BIMBA’s MONTH

February @ Capoeira Filhos da Bahia School

Come & Enjoy learning “Mestre Bimba Style” CAPOEIRA REGIONAL

In commemoration of the Anniversary of his Death, we’ll be learning Mestre Bimba’s Sequences, Music & Games during FEBRUARY – from MONDAY 4th Feb – SATURDAY 16th Feb 2013!!

  • Capoeira Regional Workshops, Rodas, Music & more…
  • Come & Join in! Share in the ENERGY – Have fun!

So, let’s all SHARE THE BRILLIANCE of MESTRE BIMBA’s Capoeira with our friends & loved ones!

Mestre of the Month


Mestre Bimba

‘Manuel Dos Reis Machado’

November 23, 1899 – February 5, 1974

MESTRE BIMBA’s MONTH

February @ Capoeira Filhos da Bahia School


Come & Enjoy learning

“Mestre Bimba Style” CAPOEIRA REGIONAL

In commemoration of the Anniversary of his Death,

we’ll be learning Mestre Bimba’s Sequences, Music & Games

during FEBRUARYfrom TUES 1st Feb – MON 28th Feb!!


SATURDAY 5th February: Mestre Bimba’s SPECIAL DAY

Capoeira Regional Workshop, Roda, Music & more…

Fun starts: 9:30am (kids class) 10:30am (adults)!

Roda 12pm | Music 1pm

Come & Join in! Share in the ENERGY – Have fun!

ALL Current CFdB students must BRING-A-BUDDY to attend the workshop (or send 1 BUDDY to participate)!

It is a FREE EVENT for all Buddies & New Beginners

So, let’s all SHARE THE BRILLIANCE of MESTRE BIMBA’s Capoeira with our friends & loved ones!

[morfeo_basic 14 /]

The son of Luiz Cândido Machado and Maria Martinha do Bonfim, Manuel dos Reis Machado known famously as Mestre Bimba was born on November 23rd, 1900, at the “Bairro do Engenho Velho” in Salvador, Brazil. The nickname “Bimba” came up due to a bet between his mother and the midwife during his birth; his mother bet that he was going to be a girl and the midwife bet he would be a boy. After he was delivered, the midwife said it’s a boy, look at his “bimba” (penis). He started learning Capoeira when he was 12 years old, with a capitão da Companhia Baiana de Navegação from Estrada das Boiadas in Salvador called Bentinho, even though, in those days, the authorities were still persecuting Capoeira. He would later be known as one half of the legendary founding fathers of contemporary Capoeira. The other would be Mestre Pastinha, the father of Capoeira Angola.

The Birth of the Regional Style

At 18, Bimba felt that Capoeira had lost all its efficiency as a martial art and resistance, becoming a folkloric activity, reduced to nine movements. It was then that Bimba started to retrieve movements from the original Capoeira fights and added movements from another African fight called Batuque – a vicious grappling type of martial art that he learned from his father, as well as introducing movements created by himself. This was the beginning of the development of Capoeira Regional.

In 1928, a new chapter in the history of Capoeira begun, as well as a change in the way black people were looked upon by the Brazilian society. After a performance at the palace of Bahia’s Governor, Juracy Magalhães, Mestre Bimba was finally successful in convincing the authorities of the cultural value of Capoeira, thus ending the official ban in the 1930’s.

Mestre Bimba founded the first Capoeira School in 1932, the Academia-escola de Capoeira Regional, at the Engenho de Brotas in Salvador, Bahia. Previously, Capoeira was only practiced and played on the streets. However, Capoeira was still heavily discriminated by upper class Brazilian society. In order to change the slyness, stealthy and malicious reputation associated with Capoeira practitioners at that time, Bimba set new standards to the art.

His students had to wear a clean, white uniform, show proof of grade proficiency from school, show good posture and many other standards. As a result, doctors, lawyers, politicians, upper middle class people, and women started to join his school, providing Bimba with better support.

Capoeira Regional is Established

In 1936, Bimba challenged fighters of any martial art style to test his Regional style. He had four matches, fighting against Vítor Benedito Lopes, Henrique Bahia, José Custódio dos Santos and Américo Ciência. Bimba won all matches.

In 1937, he earned the state board of education certificate after he was invited to demonstrate Capoeira to the President of Brazil at that time, Getúlio Dorneles Vargas.

In 1942, Mestre Bimba opened his second school at the Terreiro de Jesus – rua das Laranjeiras; today rua Francisco Muniz Barreto. The school is open until today and supervised by his former student, “Vermelho”. He also taught capoeira to the army and at the police academy. He was than considered “the father of modern Capoeira”.

Important names to the Brazilian society at that time such as Dr. Joaquim de Araújo Lima , Jaime Tavares, Rui Gouveia, Alberto Barreto, Jaime Machado, Delsimar Cavalvanti, César Sá, Decio Seabra, José Sisnando and many others were Bimba’s students.

Bimba’s Legacy

Mestre Bimba was a coalman, carpenter, warehouse man, longshoreman, horse coach conductor, but mainly Capoeirista; a giant with strong personality! Unhappy with false promises and lack of support from local authorities in Bahia, he moved to Goiânia in 1973 by invitation from a former student. He died a year later, on February 5th, 1974 at theHospital das Clínicas de Goiânia due to a stroke.

Bimba managed to recover the original values within Capoeira, which were used amongst the black slaves centuries before him. For Bimba, Capoeira was a fight but “competition” should be permanently avoided since he believed it was a “cooperation” fight, where the stronger player was always responsible for the weaker player and helped him to excel in his own fighting techniques.

Mestre Bimba fought all his life for what he strongly believed was best for Capoeira and succeeded. After he died in 1974 one of his sons, Mestre Nenel , at 14, took over his father’s Capoeira academy. Mestre Nenel is still responsible for the remarkable cultural and historical legacy his father left him and he is the President of Filhos de Bimba School of Capoeira.

Bimba’s Academy Rules

Bimba strongly believed Capoeira had an extraordinary value as a self-defence martial art, hence his efforts to develop its learning in a structured and methodical way.

Bimba developed a Capoeira teaching method with commandments, principles and traditions , which are still part of the Capoeira Regional up to this day. Some of his commandments are:

  • To stop smoking and drinking since it interferes with the players’ performance
  • To avoid demonstrating one’s progression as a Capoeira player outside the academy
  • Avoid conversation during training, instead observe and learn from watching
  • Practice daily the basic fundamentals
  • Do not be afraid to come close to your opponent – the closer that you get, the more you will learn
  • Keep your body relaxed
  • It is better to get beat up in the roda than on the streets

Bimba also established his own Capoeira principles to fundament his Capoeira teaching method:

  • “ Gingar sempre”  (to Ginga always) “Ginga” is the Capoeira basic movement
  • “ Esquivar sempre ” (to Esquiva always)
  • All movements must have a purpose
  • To preserve a constant fixed position on the ground
  • To play according to the rhythm determined by the berimbau
  • To respect a player when he/she can no longer defend an attack movement
  • To protect the opponent’s physical and moral integrity

Consequently, Bimba created several traditions and rituals to support his methodology:

  • A chair was used in order to train beginner students/players
  • The “ charanga ” is the Capoeira orchestra, composed by a berimbau and two pandeiros
  • The singing, songs composed by Bimba to accompany the game
  • The “ batizado ”

The aspects that still makes Capoeira Regional so peculiar and outstanding is its method:

  • Admission exam;
  • The “ sequência ”  of the basic 17 Capoeira attack and defence movements
  • Practice of the different rhythms of the game
  • Specific movements: traumatizing, projection, connected and unbalancing
  • Practice of “ cintura desprezada ”
  • “ Formatura ”
  • “ Especializacdo ” and “ emboscada ”

Edval Santos – Mestre Val Boa Morte

Facebook Twitter You Tube