Mestre Ratto

Mestre Ratto

“I was born and grew up in Fortaleza, at the beach. How it is traditional at any beach, it is usuall to see rodas of Capoeira. My brother Ricardo had an opportunity to has a contact with a group of boys which were practicing Capoeira, called vagabondage of the beach, every weekend. Ricardinho turned quick to be a part of this group, and was outstanding thanks to his agility and ability to turn his head on the floor (peão de cabeça).

At the beginning of 1983, I already had some confidence in the game and was feeling more at ease at the roda. That time there were only two groups of Capoeira in Fortaleza: Senzala and Zumbi. There was a Thursday roda, where capoeiristas of both groups were playing. So I came along to meet the great players of Capoeira. On one side, Zumbi Group with Espirro Mirim, Geléia, Jean, Soldado, Lula and Ulisses. On the other side, Senzala Group with Paulão, Canário, Dingo, Gamela, Araminho and Gurgel. I found out that there were other rodas in the city, as the one of Mestre Geléia at Barra do Ceará. My mother was getting worried as I was going more and more around the city because of Capoeira.

In 1984 I couldn’t hide anymore the admiration and a wish to see a class of Mestre Paulão at the school Escola de Arte Senzala. I saw at the rodas that his style of Capoeira was different, it was taking my attention, this Capoeira of much style practizied by Boneco, Cibriba, Pica Pau, Maroca, Bisquim, Atabaque, Querido e Juruna. The acrobatic were keeping my eyes. Therefore I decided that I have to participate at this school.

One day there appeared two capoeiristas from Brazilia in DCE, they asked information about the times and place of the classes of Mestre Paulão, and I offered myself to show them the way. Comming there, Mestre Paulão just finished his first class, and they were all in then called colled Capital. Mestre invited us to stay for a next class and I couldn’t beleive that at all. So I showed my ability and at the end of the class I asked the information about the fees. He asked me if I was really interested in the classes and I have answered quick yes. How he has done with other boys, he pormised me trousers and a t-shirt. It was enough for me to leave from there fascinated. The class was different, the movements more fascinating and the roda was thrilling. I made friends around, integrating myself and I quickly became a part of the Mestre Paulão show team. At the beginning it was me who was always carrying atabaque, making arames for berimbaus, etc.

I have began to give classes while I was still blue belt and some of these students are my students still stoday, like Peninha and Marcelo. It was at Academia Linhas e Curvas and the classes were happening three times a week. Through Capoeira Brasil and Mestre Paulão I had an opportunity to have a contact with famous mestres in Brazil and in the world. At the Grande Encontro de Mestres e Professores de Capoeira, an event organized in Center Um, I have received a green belt. I have met famous names of Capoeira at this occasion: Mestre João Grande, Mestre João Pequeno, Mestre Suassuna, Mestre Itapoã, Mestre Mão Branca, Mestre Boneco, Mestre Paulinho. It was like this my interest in travelling around all the Brazil  to deepen my knowledge and experience of Capoeira was born.

In 1992 I have received a brown belt and I became a Formando. This time Mestre Paulão decided to live in Netherlands in Europe. This was an experience which marked significantly my life od capoeirista, because I became to be one of the organizers of the Group in Fortaleza, together with Mestre Zebrinha, Marcão, Kim, Envergado, Cibriba, Ferrim, Serê. This was a big challenge from Mestre Paulão and it was door which opened for the Group Capoeira Brasil from Ceará to the contacts in Europe. Straight after my journeys out of Brazil begun. My first journey was a month spent in Germany. And after that to many others countries of Europe like France, Netherlands, Spain, Belgium and United Kingdom.

In 2001 I became Formado Ratto by receiving the highest belt in Group, black belt. This day was one of the most important days in my life because it was a recognition of 19 years dedicated to the work of Capoeira. It was a memorable moment, one big satisfaction to receive this belt in presence of the renowned Mestres as Mestre Itapoã, Mestre Paulinho Sabiá, Mestre Boneco and Mestre Tony Vargas.

In 2002 I have founded officially a social project Água de Beber with the aim to work with Capoeira in the deprived communities in Fortaleza, working to rescue the children who live in these communities. The efforts invested in this project were well worth it, our work growed quickly, spreading in various areas of social risk in the city, culminating in the year 2006 in transformation of the social project Água de Beber into the indipendent social institution named CENTRO CULTURAL CAPOEIRA ÁGUA DE BEBER.”