ICAF Bellingham is a non-profit educational organization committed to the cultivation, preservation, and growth of the African Brazilian cultural art form Capoeira Angola. Our goal is the creation of a strong and vibrant community committed to social transformation through empowering individuals to overcome both self and societally imposed limitations.
Capoeira in Bellingham began in 2007 when members of the community formed the WWU Capoeira Club at Western Washington University. Through campus connections with Mestre Silvinho of FICA Seattle, the group was invited to join the organization under his oversight.
The FICA Bellingham Study Group has been training since Spring of 2010. Our community efforts have been contunially supported by Mestre Silvinho, who oversees the study group with regular visits and special workshops. The study group has always been open to all, whether beginner or experienced, students and members of the community.
MESTRE JURANDIR NASCIMENTO
Mestre Jurandir Nascimento founded the International Capoiera Angola Foundation Seattle in 1997. A small group of students invited him from Brazil to teach them the philosophy, movement and music of Capoeira Angola.
Mestre Jurandir worked tirelessly to bring the rich traditions of Capoeira Angola to the Pacific Northwest. The first classes were held at Miller Community Center on Capitol Hill. Mestre Jurandir also taught workshops in various schools in the greater Seattle area.For many years ICAF Seattle trained in a studio of their own where he taught music and movements, and endowed students with his rich knowledge and philosophy of Capoeira Angola.
Mestre Jurandir lived and taught in Seattle until 2005. The community he worked so hard to create continues to grow. Mestre’s Jurandir’s first Contra Mestre, Silvinho from Belo Horizonte, Brazil, currently leads the group.
ICAF Seattle is now based in the culturally diverse Ranier Valley neighborhood.
Mestre Jurandir visits Seattle often to give workshops, demonstrations, and lectures.
Silvio Aleixo Dos Reis, Mestre Silvinho, Belo Horizonte, Brazil-USA
He has dedicated 23 years of his life to Capoeira Angola. He started capoeira with Mestre Rogerio,Belo horizonte/Brazil in 1986 and as Mestre Jurandir's student he was the leader of FICA-BH for 8 years.
In Belo Horizonte he has taught for social programs created by the city council such as Homeless People and for street kids, named Kids in the Park. There he also taught for a Youth Project created to teach African Brazilian music, drums, and dance known as Tambolele.
Since 2004 he has leading the International Capoeira Angola Foundation, ICAF Seattle, founded in 1997 by Mestre Jurandir, as well as the TESC Capoeira Angola Club at the Evergreen State College in Olympia, which was started by Evergreen students under Mestre Jurandir leadership since 1998.
Mestre Silvinho has taught at middle and high schools in Seattle and vicinities since 2004 while supporting the development of other ICAF Groups in the USA. He has presented and have been supporting the development of ICAF African Brazilian Community Festivals in Seattle and Olympia.He has been traveling and presenting at conferences in the USA since 2000.
Our training sessions normally take place on Western Washington University's campus. At times sessions will be held at other venues within the Bellingham Area.
Fall Quarter training: WWU campus; Multipurpose Room, Monday 5:30-7:30
WHAT IS CAPOEIRA ANGOLA?
Capoeira Angola is an Afro-Brazilian art form--a fluid, rhythmic martial art; a ritual; a dance of deceptive vulnerability, wit, and grace. The intricate movements of Capoeira Angola weave tradition, history, spirituality, and philosophy into a uniquely beautiful "game". Like many African based traditions, it is orally transmitted from masters (mestres) to students.
Capoeira was used by enslaved Africans in Brazil to fight against colonial oppression. After emancipation of the slaves, Capoeira continued to develop in Brazil, however, it was outlawed for almost 400 years and so it was practiced in secret. To teach and practice Capoeira Angola was legalized in the 1930's. It survives because of the wisdom and dedication of a handful of mestres and their devoted students.
Played in a circle (roda), the game (jogo) of Capoeira Angola is an improvised combination of movements, a mix of acrobatics, rituals, and dance. The players respectfully demonstrate their skills in Capoeira while singing songs in Portugese and playing instruments.
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FICA Bellingham Study Group / WWU Capoeira Club
SECTION UNDER CONSTRUCTION
FICA Bellingham has collaborated with both the Lummi Youth Organization and Raizes Culturales as a way to promote capoeira with kids in Whatcom County.