Friday, October 30, 2009

A Fellow Morehouse Man Comes to Teach Capoeira

As the Dance and Creative Movement Teacher, I have an opportunity to bring in guest teachers who are experts in their field and live locally to present to the BUGS Students what they know and teach it to them. I have had an African dance teacher, drum instructor, and tap instructors. This time around the students are learning about Capoeira. I had a great opportunity to bring another Morehouse Man and guest teacher, Jason Harris, to teach this art form that originates from Brazil.

Jason is holding a Berimbau (musical bow) which by changing the tension of the string effects the tone and sound that the berimbau makes. Along with the berimbau, he used an Agogo (double bell). It was in a woven capsule that had bells inside. As he strummed the berimbau, he would shake the agogo. The students were mesmerized. How could he play two instruments at once? They wanted to try to do the same. A few were successful but they tried and were interested in something new and that was more important than playing like Jason who has been studying and learning for years.

After the introduction of the instruments, he began with the Ginga (a two step movement that goes from side to side). This movement was the first step that they learned. He asked the students to do what they thought was the two step. All of them did what they had learned from videos. How wrong they were! This two step was very different from what they were used to seeing.

The students were taught how to execute a Meia Lua (half-moon kick). As the Meia Lua was executed, the partner fell to the ground in a motion called Negativa. Negativa is a movement where one falls toward the ground and stopping their momentum with their hands on the ground.

Bria going into her negativa.

A great deal of thanks to Jason Harris for his expertise!

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