Thursday, October 9, 2008

Capoeira Angola Videos

As people who first learn Capoeira Regional (well... IMHO, we are actually learning Capoeira Contemporanea), we have a tendency to caricaturise Capoeira Angola: we understand it as what Regional is not. Regional is high, objective, acrobatic (well, again, acrobatics is something in Capoeira Contemporanea), fast. So, Angola must be low, ludic, scrunched up and slow.

Wrong, wrong, wrong. I don't know much, but I do know it isn't just. When we delve into a body of knowledge, structure (i.e. Regional vs Angola vs Contemporanea vs Benguela vs Iuna vs...) is there to facilitate learning. But ultimately, as the postmodernists rightly claim, structure is there to be dissolved. Take everything with a pinch of salt, especially capoeira, which resists (hey hey!) being put into a box.

How you know not to trust a barber:

Actually, the rhythm that should be played in not Angola, but Santa Maria. It sounds like this:

French Capoeira Documentary with Mestre Pastinha in 1963. This was probably while Regional (and Angola, for that matter) was still being polished. Notice how the game is not very pretty. Then again, this is a documentary, so beware of editing (and the players 'acting up' for the camera.

Mestre Cobra Mansa vs Mestre Acordeon (~1990). They used magnetic VHS tapes back in those days to record things. Excuse the distortions and no music. Yes, this is violent (you can almost feel it seething, about to erupt, no?). Yes, this is Angola (or rather we should say, 'Capoeira is Capoeira'--no boxes, please.).

Samba de Roda (nothing to do with Angola--at least directly)

Woo!!! (fans self)Yes, I've noticed--that butt has a person attached to it.

Heh heh, sorry, just letting off some steam.


Guys: Yes, macho men dance. Ladies: Don't learn how to dance from straight men.


Bryan said...

Oh My God...

mvken said...