This Blog is mostly about capoeira: music and training. I keep a record of some of what we learn in classes/workshops, as I see them as important records of capoeira teaching. I also explore my various injuries and share anything interesting I find related to Capoeira/Brazilian history and culture.
My childhood nickname is Lelé. Which is just an affectionate, typical shortening of my full name. My friends and family in Brasil call me that and whenever I hear it’s like the child in me is being called to come out and play.
I first started Capoeira in 1987, when I was 16, in Brasilia. I only trained for a couple of months and then had to move to Rio with my aunt/uncle. I couldn’t find anywhere nearby to train, so I had to stop. In 1989 I moved to London with my mum and found a group near where I lived, in Islington and trained with them for nearly a year in 1990/1991. The teacher was Robinson from Muzenza, and I trained with him until he left the UK. The only other group I knew of in London back then was too expensive for me – I wasn’t earning much and I was studying. So I stopped, but I never forgot Capoeira.
Twenty years later, I started training again in February 2011, with DDL in Streatham. This was accidental, I thought I was too old to do Capoeira and I was just looking for a local place where my son could learn. Mestre Guimba convinced me to give it a go myself and that I wasn’t too old. I have been training since then.
From May 2014 I’ve been privileged and honoured to train with Mestre Poncianinho’s Mojuba group in London. It’s never too late to start learning Capoeira. I spent years not going back because I thought I was too old and that was foolish of me. All I wanted was to train again. Capoeira never left my heart since I first met her when I was a teenage girl.
When it comes to my injuries, and there have been many over the years: “I would rather wear out than rust out” – Dolly Parton