When local group Axé Capoeira Arizona says "Bring your Axé," they're not referring to the bladed chopping instrument. Axé (pronounced AH-shay) is a Yourba word meaning "positive energy," and that's what Capoeira practitioners will bring to Scottsdale this weekend for the 10th Annual Batizado and Afro-Brazilian Dance Event.
Capoeira is a cross between dance and martial arts (video game geeks might remember Capoeira master characters from fighting games like Street Fighter III and Mortal Kombat). The art was developed in Brazil more than 400 years ago, and combines self-defense with acrobatics and Afro-Brazilian music and dance moves.
The annual Batizado and Afro-Brazilian Dance Event will showcase talented Capoeria artists from all over the world, along with a social dance and live music from local musicians Quetzal Guerrero and DJ Seduce.
Learn more about Capoeira and view a video after the jump.
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The purpose of the Batizado (which means "baptism" in Portuguese) is to celebrate the achievements of Capoeira students. During Batizado, new students receive their first cord (the equivalent of a belt in other martial arts), and progressing students receive cords for higher levels. The celebration begins at 9 p.m. Saturday, November 13, with a social called Club Brazil at The Theodore Hotel, 7353 E. Indian School Road in Scottsdale.
Club Brazil will feature Brazilian rhythms and grooves for the 21-and-over crowd, courtesy of Quetzal Guerrero (who has collaborated with everybody from "Mambo King" Tito Puente to guitarist Jorge Santana, brother of Carlos), and DJ Seduce, whose deft musical mixes of bossa nova and jazzy grooves fill a handful of compilations from AfroBaile records. Tickets for Club Brazil cost $10 at the door.
On Sunday, November 14, the Batizado event continues with a public performance by Capoeira instructors and students, including internationally renowned Mestre Barrăo and his Grupo Axé Capoeira, who will also provide live music. The performance begins at 1:30 p.m. at the Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts, 7380 E. Second Street. Tickets cost 420 for adults, and $12 for children aged 4 to 12.
For more information on the 10th Annual Batizado and Afro-Brazilian Dance Event, visit www.axecapoeira-az.com or call 480-994-2787.