NIU Capoeira Club to Host Brazilian Martial Arts Exhibition – Northern Star

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NIU Capoeira Club is hosting an exhibition match on Thursday at noon.

NIU Afro-Brazilian Capoeira Club Hosts Capoeira Exhibition Match in MLK Commons with Capoeira Mestre Iuri Santos. The main event takes place from noon to 1 p.m. on Thursday.

“(Capoeira) was formed around 500 years ago, developed by slaves from Brazil,” said Oliver Camacho, educational advisor and founder of the Capoeria club. “Capoeira is about cultural preservation, to help maintain culture and create culture. This art form is ancient and has been passed down from generation to generation. Afro-Brazilian slaves encapsulated it and kept it as well. It’s important because it’s a way to move the body, mind and soul.

This art form begins to mix martial arts and dance moves to liberate body and mind. Camacho explained that the The berimbau, a special percussion instrument, is an integral part of the movements of Capoeira, intertwining with and guiding other instruments to maintain the tempo and flow of the dance movements. During the warm-up session, Camacho explained the importance of freedom and how essential it is to the art of Capoeira.

Gregory Beyer, professor and director of percussion studies, said this connection is really essential because training for the club takes place in the Music Building of the percussion studio. Considering how integral percussion is to Capoeira, it is important to have this connection. Beyer is very passionate about Capoeira and encourages people to come to the club.

Arely Ferreira-Nava, president of the Afro-Brazilian capoeira club and sophomore majoring in chemistry, mentioned the idea that Coeperia was a kind of game; it can be considered a sport, although with a more spiritual element. Ferreira-Nava said she liked this aspect of Capoeira because she liked the physical activity she got from it.

“One of the best things about the club, at least for me, are the events because they really bring everyone together,” Ferreira-Nava said. “Sometimes we do events with the Music Club, and they really get more people and it feels like a game.”

Ferreira-Nava explained that because musical instruments are important, the more people involved the better, as there are usually about ten people playing. She said that at a minimum you need two people to do the mock combat and the moves, but the game is more fun with more participation. Ferreira-Nava expressed how great she thinks it is to connect and meet new people beyond the classroom.

“In Capoeira you meet people and you kind of develop a bond with them because you have to know them, play with them and you need that confidence when you play with them,” Ferreira-Nava said.

The club also hosts a variety of Brazilian and capoeira cultural workshops as part of Latin Heritage Month, including: Introduction to World Culture, Capoeira Percussion, Song, and Poetry, and Racism in American Culture. There will also be a Capoeira training session after the events. Interested students can contact Oliver Camacho at [email protected] or Gregory Beyer at [email protected].