Capoeira in Singapore?

During our visit to Singapore, we’re staying in a friend-of-a-friend’s apartment.  We’re so thankful for this opportunity, which is saving us tons of money!  The apartment is on the 23rd floor of a high-rise, so things are generally pretty quiet. A few days ago I could faintly hear some rhythmic singing and clapping, and we could not figure out where it was coming from.  I finally went out on the balcony and spotted them – a group of singing, clapping, and martial-arts-dancing people gathered in a circle.  It was too far away to really see what was happening, so I went and grabbed the video camera. 

This is the video I shot from the balcony, 23 floors up.  In addition, they were across the river and a few blocks away, so this was quite a distance!  Somehow the sound carried all the way up to us, but the quality isn’t too great.  This is one of those times when I was kicking myself for not having brought along our shotgun microphone!  You can tell how far away I am because of how the sound doesn’t seem to quite line up.

The video is a little over 3 minutes, but they danced for closer to 30.

 http://vimeo.com/moogaloop.swf?clip_id=12971709&server=vimeo.com&show_title=1&show_byline=1&show_portrait=0&color=&fullscreen=1

Capoeira in Singapore? from Matt Menger on Vimeo.

This really reminded me of Capoeira, a Brazilian dance/martial arts tradition, and after some quick internet research it turns out that I was probably correct.  You can read about the group here, where they were featured on a Singaporean website.

This is one thing I didn’t expect to see in Singapore!

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1 Comment

Filed under Ethnoarts, travel

One response to “Capoeira in Singapore?

  1. Just watched capoeira last weekend in a tiny town in Switzerland along the French border…I think that is even more surprising in some ways. -Andrea R.

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