August 12, 2009

Afro Reggae Movement documentary

WONDERFUUUUUUL scene ,@ 04:51, primary school kids practicing with Junk percussion. @5:32 useful vocal percussion to remember. @6:17 the kid on the left , "caixa player" , forefront playing his heart out ! .

. . . . " Born out of desire to counteract the violent drug industry and police oppression, Grupo Cultural AfroReggae -- GCAR ("AfroReggae Cultural Group") was formed in January 1993, initially around AfroReggae Notícias ("AfroReggae News") -- a newspaper designed to add value and disseminate black culture. The newspaper primarily targeted young people interested in reggae, soul, and hip-hop, among other musical genres. The group soon thereafter opened its first "Culture Community Center") in the Vigário Geral favela (a slum area) in 1993. In a short period of time, this center was offering its first workshops -- dance, percussion, garbage recycling, soccer and capoeira -- the foundations for new social projects. GCAR knew exactly what it was seeking with its programs: to offer a cultural and artistic education for adolescents living in slums. By affording local youth more chances of strengthening their citizenship, GCAR hoped to provide a viable path away from entanglement in the prevalent drug trade.

In 1997, AfroReggae opened Centro Cultural AfroReggae Vigário Legal , a landmark in its history. With structured facilities within the community, they were able to enhance the quality of their programs and transform the initiative into a reference point for social and cultural practices in the city of Rio de Janeiro.

In conjunction with workshops in music, capoeira, theater, hip hop and dance, Vigário also became the home for the "Criança Legal" project, designed to give support to preschool kids through programs aimed at socializing and literacy. Participant children's parents also take part in weekly meetings where subjects such as domestic violence and personal hygiene are discussed; they also receive basic-food baskets.

Of all activities offered, music has been the major driver in attracting teenagers to participate in GCAR. The success attained by Banda AfroReggae, both in artistic terms and as a social-project model, has attracted other teenagers who want to follow this same path. Today there are three other bands that have also been making public presentations: Banda Makala Música e Dança, Afro Lata and Afro Samba. There are also subgroups: Afro Mangue, Tribo Negra, Akoni and Kitôto.

( Info that come with this video clip )