Mar 4, 2011

Training in St Kilda

Treinando na St Kilda

No matter where we train, it's the training itself that matters - but a warm, light filled space sure does help.
African Drumming has just opened it's brand new Centre for West African Music and Culture at 252 St Kilda Rd, St Kilda - and Flor da Gente classes will be conducted in an upstairs Dance Studio space.

Jan 25, 2011

Globe to Globe

O Globo a Globo

As Capoeira Angola spreads across the Globe, it can be viewed as a form of cultural exchange. Along with it, spread other cultural forms of art, dance and music. The Globe to Globe World Music Festival over the weekend was a perfect platform to show people a small insight into what Capoeira Angola can be.

A large amount of thanks to all students, and a happy new year to come!

Dec 17, 2010

End of a Year

Fim do Ano

As the sun sets on 2010, Flor da Gente Australia sends a very big Thankyou to its Students for their dedication to Capoeira Angola, the hard training and their good company. The school wouldn't be what it is without you all.

Monday the 20th of December will be the last class for the year, followed by a short period of rest for all. We'll come together again for the very first class of 2011 - Monday the 10th of January.

Muito Obrigado Camaradá!

Nov 20, 2010

Day of Black Awareness

Dia da Consciência Negra
photograph by Jose Carlos Costa

Today, November 20th, marks the day that Zumbi dos Palmares died in 1695, at the hands of attackers striving to end the existence of resistance that the Quilombos embodied. The day now stands to remember, advocate and celebrate Afro-Brazilian awareness about the history of people, the injustices of the past and present, the resolutions of the future and the contributions to society by people of African descent.

A brief introduction to Zumbi dos Palmares can be found here;

Oct 5, 2010

Good Luck

Boa Viagem

Best of luck to Angoleiro and amazing person - Bala Klava. With the sadness of seeing one of us leave, comes the happiness of knowing there'll be exciting times ahead for such a deserving person. We look forward to the time coming when we can welcome him back. Muito obrigado e boa sorte colega velho!

Sep 28, 2010

Adeus, Adeus!

Bala Klava Vai Embora

Flor da Gente student, Melbourne Pare and the friendliest Angoleiro out there - Bala Klava - prepares to leave for an international voyage that will see him living abroad for at least a year. To celebrate his time with us, good fortune on his trip and his safe return, come join us for Monday night class on the 4th of October, for it will be the last chance to see him before he departs.

Sep 19, 2010

Berimbau Workshop #1

Let's Play this Sunday! The first of many Berimbau Workshop / Playing classes will kick off to a flurry of Gunga, Medio and Viola. Over the weeks, the practicalities and the main toques of the Berimbau will be made graspable; and we'll be working on emphasising sound, introducing different rhythms and begin different variations.
It's one thing to be able to play the Berimbau well enough to hear... another thing to make the Berimbau sing.


What: Berimbau Workshop 1 - Playing the Berimbau
When: Sunday the 26th of September, 2:00 - 3:30 pm
Where: African Drumming - 12 Grey St, St Kilda, 3182
Cost: Normal class prices for students, free for first time visitors

Sep 15, 2010

First Lesson Free

Everyone's a beginner at something...

Remember the first time we tried Capoeira? A mixture of uncertainty, awkwardness and excitement can sometimes turn people away.... or if the mix of new feelings is just right - they can make people fall in love with it for life.

To recognise and celebrate being new to something, Flor da Gente is giving a free lesson to anyone welcomed to the class for their first time. Flor da Gente students can tell all their friends, colleagues, casual acquaintances and the people we strike up conversations with on the tram - that to try something like Capoeira Angola for the first time is engaging, fun and best of all - free.

The Berimbau - Part I

Firstly, an Instrument...

Photograph by Bala Klava

As we gear up for our first Berimbau Workshop, where students will prepare to make their own instrument, we kick off our thirst for Berimbau knowledge with an incredibly detailed look at the instruments' continued use and impact within Brazilian Music and Culture. The following link is made available by Prof. Eric A. Galm, a work entitled; 'Beyond the Roda: The Berimbau de Barriga in Brazilian Music and Culture'.

Instead of solely focusing on the history of the Berimbau and its association with Capoeira, the book looks at the applications of the instrument in Modern, Electronic and Brazilian Art Music, with references to Berimbau players that will change the way we think about what's possible on the Berimbau.

A brief glimpse of the sources cited by Prof. Galm in the bibliography is exciting enough in itself before even reading the chapters. The links that follow are works that are methodical and enlightening studies that track the Berimbau's overall life as a Musical instrument.

Article in .pdf format
'Beyond the Roda: The Berimbau de Barriga in Brazilian Music and Culture'

A slightly more accessible, printed form, is available from;

Thanks go to for Prof. Galm for his consent

Sep 14, 2010

Berimbau Workshops

"The Berimbau cannot be forgotten. Berimbau is the primitive mestre."

- Mestre Pastinha

To truly practice Capoeira Angola is to know the workings of the Berimbau. In the coming weeks, Berimbau workshops will be given, and the process of making one will be taught from start to finish. From cutting and preparing the wood, right through to varnishing and painting the cabaça, students will be able to intimately know 'the primitive Mestre'.

Anyone interested should contact Treinel Gingadinha on

Sep 13, 2010

Welcome Back

Volta ao Mundo

Returning from his international travels, Flor da Gente senior student, Papagaio, is back in Melbourne. He returns with more knowledge of Capoeira, a head full of travels and adventure stories and a smile that can only come from circumnavigating the globe. Welcome back rapaz.

Sep 8, 2010

Warm up, warm down

Training for the long term

Putting an emphasis on being flexible can help us all play longer - plus when we're all touched with the grace of old-age, the chances are that we'll be still moving with ease... maybe even a little bit of malandragem as well. Here is an article on the ways and reasons for stretching our body parts.

Sep 7, 2010

Back to Class

Classes for all resume in Melbourne

Treinel Gingadinha has returned from training in Flor da Gente, Rio de Janeiro. Accompanying him are new songs, musical equipment, stories of good games, training exercises and although none thought it possible, more positive vibes for the love of Capoeira Angola.

Sep 5, 2010

New class times and info

6:30 - 8:00 pm - All levels
Aboriginal Youth Centre - 184 Gertrude Street, Fitzroy

6:30 - 8:00 pm - Beginners
8.15 - 9.30 pm - All levels
African Drumming Centre - 252 St Kilda Road, St Kilda

Student Promotion

If you've been getting asked by people about where you disappear to every week, and would like something to show them - try giving them a small flyer with the class info.

Any help we can do to strengthen the Capoeira Angola classes in Melbourne is rewarding for us all - the more people that come to learn with us, the more people we have to sing and play our game with!

Aug 29, 2010

Class in Rio

More news from Brazil - Treinel Gingadinha prepares a shipment of materials for instruments for the Melbourne School. Expect a supply of various Capoeira instruments for our school rodas. After more classes with the Flor da Gente School in Catete, Rio de Janeiro, the excitement felt by Gingadinha to get back to Melbourne students is growing.

Luckily, us students here in Australia have this direct link with the Flor da Gente School in Brazil as a source of information, inspiration and support for our own learning. A wealth of knowledge exists there in the classes taught by Mestre Mano. For the Melbourne students considering travelling to Brazil soon - a visit to the school would see them welcomed with open arms.

Aug 20, 2010

Flor da Gente Brasil

Treinel Gingadinha is currently in Rio de Janeiro with Mestre Mano at the Flor da Gente School's academy. This picture was taken from one of the games Gingadinha played with Mestre Mano.

Gingadinha has been holding classes at the academy, training with Mestre Mano and training with Treinel Cigano, Treinel Rato, Treinel Ajax and Treinel Maicol. It is a very important time, to be working with people at the Academy and taking part in some changes to its organisation. Many thanks to all the students, old and new, and the visitors to the Catete Academy.

Aug 8, 2010

Angola Keywords

Here's a link to an article written by Shayna McHugh, that describes some of the thoughts and concepts that our bodies should one day know off by heart. Read it, understand it, and then forget it all when you go into the roda...

Jun 28, 2010

After the Quilombos

For those who have heard the word 'Quilombo' before, this post is to urge you to further your knowledge of it and what it means. The Ministério das Relaçoes Exteriors (Ministry of External Relations) of Brazil publishes in one of its articles the notion that there is no documented evidence supporting the widely believed idea that Capoeira was practiced and used to defend the Quilombos of the 17th century.

This could greatly be attributed to the fact that many documents relating to slavery, and the attacks on the Quilombos, were destroyed after the fledgling Republic of Brazil abolished slavery officially in 1888. The article below speaks of the documented history, a good glimpse of what came after the 'un-documented', yet widely accepted history that the word 'Quilombo' evokes.

Article in English

Article in Portuguese

May 13, 2010

Abolishment of Slavery in Brazil

Abolição da Escravatura em Brasil

This day in 1888, the formal abolition of Slavery was granted by the Republic of Brazil, a country largely founded on the lives of people forced into manual labour. While officially abolished, the practice was effectively continued in society well into the 20th century. When talking about the African slave trade, the amount of people which were actually forced into slavery is often not considered with enough solemnity. A sobering overview of statistics on the African Slave Trade, the regions people were taken from, the places that received them and the overall numbers is given in the following link;

These figures point to a body of research conducted and presented in the following publication;

'Transformations in Slavery - A History of Slavery in Africa' by Paul E. Lovejoy provides a fascinating read of the history of the greatest forces migration of a people, over a period of centuries, an event which shaped the world in which we find ourselves and and one in which we can trace the origins to our Beautiful Game

Contents, preface and a large preview of the book can be seen here