2017 Batizado of Cordão de Ouro Capoeira, Newark, New Jersey

This post is my overall review of the 2017 Cordão de Ouro Batizado at the Brazilian Cultural Center of Newark in New Jersey (my group… no bias). We had an awesome showing of students and teachers. I was really happy about being able to help my Mestre, Contra Mestre Cebolinha, run things. I was unfortunately injured during the event, but that didn’t mean I didn’t have a great time. I want to thank everyone who came and made it as fun as it was.

The event definitely energized me to work harder and see what kind of improvements I could make, not just in my game, but also in music, knowledge, and my ability to teach others. Here are some cool bits about the event that can help you grow your group, and your Capoeira.


One of the high points for me during the event was having Mestre Cabelo come and talk for about half an hour about music in Capoeira (after an hour and a half workshop!). A tid-bit that he shared was about how the dobrão (deblume) for the berimbau is an older relic than the use of a rock. Even though the rock looks more primitive, the dobrão is the original and the rock is what came later. Similar mind blowing things were said about many things and honestly deserves its own post.

Honestly I could have listened to him all day rant about these things. We have a wall of photos of different mestres in our academy and Mestre Cabelo talked about how he used to live with this guy, was friends with that guy, etc. This is someone who has been steeped in Capoeira for a very long time and has a good connection to the old guard. I think having any Mestre who specializes in things like music, history, candomble, etc. should be part of the batizado experience. As I told a friend, when in my life would I, a student, get the chance to speak with Mestre Cabelo one on one? Probably never. Maybe once. Doing a panel or a workshop on a specific topic would do wonders for people’s education.


Something that I’m very happy about was the fact that we recorded a ton of videos and had them streamed live through facebook. We used an ipad with a tripod for the majority of the recordings(part 1, part 2, part3), but also iphones when we were outside of the academy.

I’ve mentioned this idea in another post about my 5 ways to improve a Batizados, but the intention behind this effort is to let those who could not come, see the event and think about coming the following year. Hopefully next year we’ll get some better equipment, but for now, I’m very happy with the effort.


For the love of god, keep records! How many shirts do you need? Which groups come to visit in the biggest numbers? Which days make the most revenue or have the highest viewership on the live streams? None of these questions can have answers if you don’t keep records. As part of my solution to this problem, I created a Google spreadsheet available for download for anyone to copy and use for their batizados. Let me know what you think and if you found it helpful!


Sadly, we had someone who was programmed to do a workshop, drop out at the last minute. This can happen at any event, so I think it’s always a good idea to have someone act as a backup and communicate that need so that they make sure to show up on time. Relying on friends to do workshops might works well in a pinch, but having things planned out well makes for a smoother batizado with less stress for those organizing it.


The event was a lot of good fun. Lots of games, lots of workshops, and overall the event was very inclusive of the kids we had participate. Special shoutout to Professor Budoy from CDO Montreral. That whole crew is full of great people, so if you ever find yourself in Quebec with a free night, stop by their space for solid training. Hope to see you next year!

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