The performance at Blessed Sacrament (Grades 3-8 in a packed gym) was spectacular! The level of the very ‘acrobatic’ dance/martial arts was superior and the total involvement of the children was always in evidence.The teaching aspects were incorporated into the introductions in an engaging, often humorous manner. The children were reminded of the African influence as slaves in Brasil and how they accomplished a semblance of freedom in creating and incorporating a martial arts aspect into their dance. No forcing or reiterating of the ‘history’ was needed. The children were asked to repeat several Portuguese ‘calls’ which they did with intuitive response and enthusiasm. Their participation in dance was highly responsive, too. The explanation of the origin of one of their ‘musical instruments’ and of resonance was highly imaginative and humorous. The children, no doubt, must have reflected on the unique athleticism of the members: each was lean, flexible and highly energetic. The costumes, sometimes outrageous as befits the times and culture, were authentic and used to superb effect. Here was teaching at it’s summit. There was no unnecessary talking, just the revealing of the history by highly energetic dance and movement which conveyed the story completely. It provided a golden opportunity for teachers at all grade levels to discuss African influence in the slave culture in a South American country. It was pure delight from beginning to end. Mary Legge, Principal – Blessed Sacrament Elementary – Toronto, ON
“Brazilian acrobat Eclilson De Jesus took his body-space perception to the limit, twirling spears and kicking his feet within inches of front-row viewers, physically portraying how enslaved people used to practise martial arts in the fields, unbeknownst to their masters.” by Kevin Dunn, The Georgia Straight
“Describing the capoeira as a fusion of kick-boxing, break-dancing and the samba would give you no idea of its grace or of its power. With lashing kicks, spins and continuous rolling cartwheels, the dance involves the body’s spinning a carapace of movement around itself, or enclosing itself in spherical blur of vector lines.” Lloyd Dykk, The Vancouver Sun
“Dancers demonstrate ‘NINJA’ moves”. “The students asked about the backflips, flying kicks and other ‘ninja moves’, the performers were doing as part of one of the traditional dances AchÃ© Brasil specializes in.” Gregg Chamberlain, Times Review – Revelstoke, BC.
“Dance is a fine art, but don’t imagine that means striking graceful poses in a lot of flowing draperies to a background of tinkling music. It can mean muscle-cracking contortions to the beat of drums and a speed that turns feet into weapons. Excellence is inspiring, and these Brazilians are undoubtedly masters of their craft.” Constance Rulka – The Squamish Chief
“The performers who also play the congas and berimbau (a bambo and wire bow-shaped instrument), couldn’t seem to perform enough for Monday’s audience, even in a hot tent that had them dripping with sweat” Lloyd Dykk, The Vancouver Sun
“In another break, Capoeira dancers, a style of dance developed in Brazil based on martial art, tore up the air as they twisted their bodies to the music while defying gravity.” Virginia Leeming – The Vancouver Sun
“Capoeira is a spectacular Afro-Brazilian dance form, derived from martial arts, that combines the power of kickboxing with the energy of break dancing and the grace of gymnastics.” Tony Montague – The Georgia Straighte Georgia Straight