Capoeira In Marin

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2016 Batizado and Graduation Ceremony Video Ceremony

Welcome to ABADÁ-Capoeira Marin!

ABADÁ-Capoeira Marin was founded by Helisângela Silva Willoughby, also known as Lisa, a longtime student of one of the top-ranked female capoeiristas in the world, Mestra Márcia “Cigarra” Triedler, at ABADÁ -San Francisco.  ABADÁ-Marin was founded to extend the award-winning youth and adult programs of ABADÁ -San Francisco to the Marin County community.  The principal teachers of ABADÁ- Capoeira Marin is Instrutor Prego and Graduada Ciranda.

 The Mission:

Our mission is to provide the very best capoeira program in Marin County and enrich our students’ lives through culture and diversity. By incorporating these values, we hope to help our students become good citizens in our local and global community.

Our program is based on encouragement, truth, trust, active listening, personal effort and no put downs.

About ABADÁ-Capoeira

ABADÁ (pronounced Ah-bah-dah) is the largest capoeira organization in the world, with over 40,000 members all across the globe.  ABADÁ Capoeira’s mission is to spread the African-Brazilian martial art form of capoeira worldwide, while simultaneously promoting good character, respect, and dignity.  Through capoeira, students develop skills in self-defense, acrobatics, instrument playing, rhythm, singing, language skills, goal-setting, team-work, leadership, cultural and social cooperation, respect and tradition, as well as personal confidence.  In this way, ABADÁ classes can have a permanent, positive impact on our students’ lives.

We believe capoeira is a great vehicle for teaching life lessons in leadership, goal-setting, team-work, cultural and social cooperation, respect and tradition, as well as personal confidence. Through capoeira students also develop skills in self-defense, acrobatics, instrument playing, rhythm and singing, and language skills. In this way, our youth classes can have a permanent, positive impact on our students’ lives.

The Teachers

Instrutor Prego (Diego Freitas)

BB Prego BerimbauInstrutor Prego is originally from Rio De Janeiro, Brazil.  After moving the United States and residing in New York metropolitan area for a few years, he recently relocated to San Francisco to train and work under the guidance and support of Mestra Márcia Cigarra and ACSF.  Instructor Prego brings over twenty years of experience int he ar of capoeira to our Bay Area community. He is well known for his ever present small, and accompanying energetic character. Instructor Prego is also part of the ACSF teaching artist staff. He conducts youth classes for Mission Graduates, Leonard Flynn Elementary the Alt School, and the alta Vista School. Instrutor Prego officially joined ABADÁ Marin  Teaching staff in August 2016. He teaches currently at San Rafael Community Services adult, teens and youth and at Manor Elementary School in Fairfax for youth and San Raphael Catholic School.

Graduada Ciranda (Lisa Willoughby)
Queixada pic

Lisa was born and raised in Goiânia, Brazil.  In 1998, she earned a Bachelor’s degree in Marketing and Public Relations from Universidade Estadual Paulista (São Paulo State University).  Following college, Lisa worked in the marketing field in her native Brazil.  In 1999, she moved to San Francisco to obtain additional training in marketing at U.C. Berkeley.  She subsequently was recruited to work for a local marketing firm and decided to make the Bay Area her permanent home.

In 2007, Lisa began training under Mestra Márcia Cigarra at ACSF.  Since then, capoeira has become Lisa’s life passion and she has continuously trained at the ACSF studio several times a week.  From 2009 to 2014, Lisa taught capoeira to children through ACSF residencies in Oakland, San Francisco and Marin County schools.   In May 2014, Lisa formed ABADÁ Capoeira Marin, an organization closely modeled after ACSF, to bring Capoeira instruction to the Marin County area. Currently, Lisa teaches capoeira to all ages — from pre-school age children to adults — at various cities in Marin County, including Sausalito, Corte Madera, San Anselmo and Novato.

Lisa’s classes at ABADÁ Capoeira Marin are quickly growing in popularity, a testament to both Lisa’s passion and dedication to the Capoeira art form as well as her charisma and positive energy.  She also continues to participate in local school programs and other community educational programs.  In December 2014, Lisa celebrated ABADÁ Capoeira Marin’s inaugural year with a special Open Roda event with several special guests from ACSF, including Mestra Márcia Cigarra.  The following morning, she led a special performance by her students at the Sausalito Winterfest.   Class schedules for both children and adults at ABADÁ Capoeira Marin can be found at

Lisa participated in ABADÁ’s Jogos Mundiais workshops in Rio de Janeiro in 2009, 2011 and 2013.  She currently is training to compete in the Jogos Mundiais in 2015.  She competed in ACSF’s International Jogos in 2010 and participated in in ABADÁ’s Zumbimba workshop in Rio de Janeiro in 2014.  Lisa has been a regular member of the ACSF performance troupe since 2008 and performed in the 2011 San Francisco Ethnic Dance Festival and the 2012 Spirit of Brazil.  Lisa resides in Greenbrae with her husband and young son.

Social Responsibility

Social responsibility is one of the central components of ABADÁ-Capoeira’s philosophy.   Over the years, ABADÁ has initiated many social and educational campaigns in an effort to raise consciousness for important issues such as charity, respect for others, health, peace and environmental conservation.  ABADÁ Capoeira will launch in August 2015, during the  International Capoeira Art Festival  the ABADÁFRO campaign. Once again in harmony with UNESCO, which just proclaimed the next decade as the International Decade for People of African Descent: recognition, justice, and development.

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