Interview with Instrutor Diego Guerreiro from “Travel Explotion”

Instrutor Diego Guerreiro (Capoeira Mandinga Shanghai)TE: What is your name, where are you from and what do you do?

DIEGO: My name is Diego Pappalardo. I’m from Italy, I live in Shanghai, work for a European Bank and teach capoeira.

TE: Can you describe capoeira for us?

DIEGO: Originating in Brazil in the 1600s, Capoeira is the only indigenous American martial art, it was developed by African slaves in Brazil. Capoeira began to take form amongst the community of slaves that worked on the sugar cane plantations. It became a strong weapon in the life and death struggle against their oppressors. Capoeiristas learned to camouflage the forbidden fight with singing and clapping as though it were simply entertainment.The fight was disguised behind the dance – a dance that could be as graceful as a panther and as treacherous as a snake.Capoeira is an art form and self-defense; with strong aerobic and dance elements. It is a harmony of forces that gives you power, flexibilty, endurance and self-discovery. Capoeira balances the body, soul and mind. It is a graceful, exciting art form that teaches you to be alert.

TE: In China, how would you compare capoeira to other martial arts?

DIEGO: Capoeira is less martial, more creative. It involves music and history. It is a great workout and is demanding, even though the environment is friendly and students have fun during the training.


TE: Capoeira is often seen performed without much physical contact. Is that by design?

DIEGO: As some Capoeira Master said, “There is no physical contact if you’re fast enough to avoid the kick.” The first thing that a capoeira student learns is to escape from kicks. The second thing is to kick with control. Our goal is not to hurt the opponent but to challenge him and to dialogue with him. We say “to play capoeira”, even though there is a challenge and there can be contact.

TE: How long have you been in China and what’s it been like there for you as a foreigner?

DIEGO: I have been in Shanghai since 2005, while I had also been in Beijing as student in 2004. I have now a full time job and a full time commitment to teach capoeira: I love my life here and as a foreigner who can speak mandarin I find the life in Shanghai pretty easy and convenient.

TE: If you had one tip for someone visiting China, what would it be?

DIEGO: If you’re visiting, be Chinese: eat Chinese food, visit the parks, the narrow streets, go to Beijing and have just a quick look at Shanghai. If you’re moving here for long term, then take this opportunity to realize your projects: China is the right place to do that.

Original article: “Travel Explotion

Capoeira Mandinga Shanghai Interview with Bolacha and Biscoito

Instrutora BolachaInstructora Bolacha (23):

I have been practicing capoeira for over 10 years now, since I was 11-years-old. I remember picturing myself doing everything that these people were doing with their bodies during an assembly demonstration at my elementary school and signed up for the program right away. I began training capoeira as an after school activity and fell in love with the art. I was quiet and shy growing up; capoeira has given me self-confidence and helped me overcome so many obstacles.

Everyone has a different story and journey in life. I have come to realize that my place on earth is to help others not only to teach others, but to also learn from anyone and everyone. To have a positive outlook and to dream big is my personal philosophy in life and this is only the beginning of what capoeira has offered me so far. All it takes is imaging your self doing something and that first step can make a huge difference. I cannot imagine where I would be if I did not sign up for this after school program to take capoeira. I believe this is faith and my calling in life to continue benefiting and growing from this beautiful art.

Continue reading “Capoeira Mandinga Shanghai Interview with Bolacha and Biscoito”

Interview Joaninha from “Mandingueira” blog

Joaninha’s blog is everything you can expect from a good Capoeira blog, with stories about her own training experience, tips, cultural aspects of Capoeira… But this Canadian camara has chosen a feminist and feminine approach to our practice. She tracks mysogynistic song lyrics in our rodas, she fights the upper body strength myth in female capoeirista’s minds and introduces talented and creative women who became mestres and contramestres. She was kind enough to answer our questions.

Joaninha (Mandingueira blog)About her capoeira experience…

Joaninha — the ladybug, in Portuguese – has started to train in 2005 and got more and more involved in her practice with time. She trained up to 5 times / week, despite her father calling Capoeira a “Brazilian street cult” when she started classes !

About the Mandingueira blog…

Joaninha wanted to start a blog to practice her writing skills in preparation for a future career in journalism. Her modesty led to a great concept: she didn’t want to compete against great websites such as The Capoeira Blog so she gave a feminist twist to her own capoeira blog. And she doesn’t regret it thanks to all the exchange among her readers’ community.

About the Capoeira Mandinga Shanghai group…

“Embrace the exception, not the rule”, she advises through this Tom Robbins quote. Being a small group, it’s crucial for CMS to remain as open as possible to welcome all countries, styles and opinions.

• Previous portratit: Gringa Mansa

Interview with Mestre Marcelo: Meet the real Eddy Gordo!

Real Eddy Gordo - Mestre Marcelo Caveirinha
Eddy Gordo in Tekken 3

This interview is from GamePro Online Magazine. It was deleted and found on web-archive, so I just post it here.

Editor’s Exclusive: Meet the real Eddy Gordo!

Scary Larry interviews capoeria artist Marcel Pereira—the man who gave Tekken 3’s Eddy Gordo his moves.

Marcelo Pereira was born in Sao Paulo, Brazil. He has been involved with theater since 1970. He started playing (dancing, entertaining, fighting) capoeira as a child on the streets, and was later referred to one of the most famous capoeira masters, Mestre Suassuna.

He opened his own school, Associacao de Capoeira Senzala Grande in 1979, and in 1984, came to the U.S. to perform and teach. He then founded The Capoeira Institute Inc., and Brazil Dance Revue, but his school’s traditional name as of today is Capoeira Mandinga.

Namco motion captured Marcelo’s smooth moves for Eddy Gordo in Tekken 3. As Namco preps Tekken 3 and Eddy Gordo for the PlayStation, GamePro found out more about the art of capoeria from the master himself. Continue reading “Interview with Mestre Marcelo: Meet the real Eddy Gordo!”

Capoeira Blogs Review: Gringa Mansa

From Editor:
A French member of our group, Agathe “Requebra” Nougaret has reviewed for
us some popular blogs about Capoeira.
I hope you will find these blogs interesting and add them to your bookmarks.
Obrigado Requebra!

Gringa Mansa Portrait Sabrina’s life is driven by Capoeira, even if she can’t practice anymore. Her blog is a goldmine for those eager to find out more about Capoeira culture. Gringa Mansa dedicates her time to introduce famous mestres, history, books, movies, exhibitions, songs and so on. She even gave us a short interview.

What’s your Capoeira experience?

I started training in Los Angeles in 1984 or so, with a Brazilian teacher (not a mestre) named Paris. In early 1987 I joined GCAP in Bahia, Brazil, training with mestres Moraes, Cobrinha and João Grande.

What about the Gringa Mansa blog?

I started the blog as a sort of autobiography, including the diary I wrote when I first arrived in Brazil, and it has become a way of keeping people informed about what is going on in the Capoeira world these days, particularly in Bahia. I’ve had visitors from all over the world – including China, it seems!

What would you like to say to the Capoeira Mandinga Shanghai group?

Make sure that Capoeira is more than just a physical activity. It has to include the mind and soul, and involve music, song, African-Brazilian culture and the spirit of resistance.

• Next portrait: Joaninha from “Mandingueira” blog