Because of our continued involvement in the community of Serra Grande, we decided to build a new training facility and community center within the village limits to allow us to be even more accessible to the residents.
With land purchased specifically for this project, the new Barracão d¹Angola will bring a permanent location to our continued community efforts along with being a center for the preservation of Capoeira Angola, the dance and culture of Bahia, as well as an example and resource for ecologically sustainable studies and practices. Your participation in this project will benefit many people locally and world wide by aiding in the preservation of Brazilian music and culture, by creating a global training center for capoeira angola, a meeting place and living space for traveling capoeiristas, and by participating in and supporting eco-conscious construction in the Mata Atlantic Forest.
Dear Friends and the Community of Serra Grande,
We’d like to invite you to participate in a community fundraising action for the construction of the headquarters of the:
Cultural Centre Barracão D’Angola.
First, a brief overview of our history in the region of Serra Grande. We started our work in 2003 in Fazenda Cultural Ouro Verde, a 75 hectare farm just 4km from the village of Serra Grande. Here we have built our home and capoeira training facilities using ecologically-minded construction methods, while practicing sustainable agriculture in the production of tropical fruits and cacao and living in an eco-friendly manner. At this private location, we have hosted many capoeira classes and events as well as providing housing and education to groups of guests and students interested in the ecology of the Mata Atlantico Forest.
From these beginnings, Our our socio-educational initiatives continue to this day and remain the oldest in the village of Serra Grande, Bahia. Tisza and Cabello worked on a volunteer basis for 3 years in the Rural School in the region and in the Centro de Cultura Casa do Boneco in Itacaré. For 8 years we have brought the tradition of a Carnival sound, the batucada percussion ensemble, rich with music and popular culture to Serra Grande, Ilhéus and Itacaré through the Carnival “bloco,” Trovao da Serra. In addition to the Carnival presentation, this musical and cultural initiative continues to provide for year long free classes for adults and children in the region.
In addition, we hold a yearly dance event with Capoeira Angola and Percussion, which is free of charge to participants within the community. January of 2012 marks the beginning our 17th Edition of these events. Our DanceBatuKeira event has attracted more than two thousand people to the region in recent years, contributing directly to the commerce of the village of Serra Grande and nearby areas. Participants continue come from all over Brasil and around the world to experience not only the dance, music and capoeira culture of Bahia, but also the ecology of the area.
Throughout the year and for 2 years we have classes of Capoeira Angola and percussion right at the villa of Serra Grande in a rented place open to the community, where in addition to physical health education, we are also targeting younger citizens and affording adults a social meeting place and Community Development Center. Our space is open to cultural and social initiatives of the Village and we are available to assist the community whenever requested. With the first photographic exhibition, “Trilha na Village,” consisting of 90 photographs of members of the Serra Grande community displayed at over 20 locations in and around the village, we began working directly with the community by promoting the participation of the residents in our festivities, bringing awareness of the importance of coming together for the preservation of our dances and popular music along with celebrating the history of the village and its founders.
All of these achievements have been made without institutional support from any kind of organization. Since the beginning of our work, we have relied solely upon our own personal initiative and the support of the community in the surrounding areas. We call it “ants work.” Esssentially, this means: ‘small but steady work for the community, with conscientious and everlasting results.”
As we are in the midst of construction of the new Barracão d’Angola in Serra Grande, Bahia, we are counting on your support in whatever way possible, now more than ever. The construction of the barracão is divided into three phases to facilitate the gradual progression and completion of the project in accordance with our fundraising efforts.
- Phase One consists of an 18m x 10m training space for capoeira, dance and music classes. The design of the room with two sides open to the beautiful ocean views also lends itself well to social gatherings, a place to perform music, and dance. This area of the construction will feature local sustainably grown and harvested bamboo, with a terracotta tile roof- also a local product.
- Phase Two will entail the construction of separate changing rooms for men and women, bathrooms and showers in addition to a fully equipped kitchen and BBQ area. This area will be approximately 10m x6m.
- Phase Three will complete our project with living quarters being built on the second floor above the kitchen and changing rooms. This apartment will have three bedrooms, living room, bath and kitchen- just perfect for traveling capoeiristas.
The local community has been very generous to help get the project started through the following donations from both individuals and businesses: architectural design and plans for the construction of the building and its roof; resources for the payment of 75% of labor (phase one)/15% price of steel reinforcement for the concrete and block foundation; six, 6 meter long structural poles to support the roof; along with enough locally grown bamboo for the whole roof construction along with the necessary wood for the supporting structure for the terra cotta tile roof. Additionally, the design and construction of an underground cistern for rainwater collection and a self-contained ecological waste treatment tank were also donated by members of the community.
We are in the midst of the first stage, ready to pour the concrete floor and urgently in need of acquiring material and financial support for the labor necessary to complete Phase One of the project. With the completion of the training and entertainment space, we will be able to begin operating more independently in our own space, without some of the overhead costs such as rent. We are asking for cash gifts from as little as $25 for a bag of cement to whatever your budget can spare to help to our project. Your financial support will directly contribute to the health and well-being of Serra Grande residents, businesses, and local environmental efforts.
We are totally committed to the project and to the Village of Serra Grande. Throughout the construction phases, and the years ahead, we are happy to accept the participation and involvement of all. Help us fulfill our dream. With your contribution, our Village will gain a beautiful and functional space that can house community-focused social and cultural activities and initiatives, while preserving the history and culture of Bahia, Serra Grande, and Capoeira Angola .
A strong hug to all and our most heartfelt thank you!!!
Cabello, Tisza and students Barracão D’Angola Serra Grande – Bahia/Brazil