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Brazil imported 40 percent of the African slaves brought to the Western hemisphere to work the Brazilian sugar cane plantations, and in 1888 was the last Western country to abolish slavery. Capoeira reportedly began as a type of self-defense for Brazilian slaves, but since it was prohibited, capoeira was disguised as dance. Since 1977, artistic director Jelon Vieira and his New York–based DanceBrazil have displayed, honed and elevated capoeira’s mixed heritage of dance and martial arts. Not surprisingly, the company’s works often have a theme of the disenfranchised, such as Gueto (Ghetto), choreographed by Vieira to music of Marcos Carvalho, which is one of three scheduled works. Expect the strong, athletic dancers to do justice to both the modern dance and the high-flying acrobatics.

Fri., Feb. 6, 8 p.m.; Sat., Feb. 7, 3 & 8 p.m., 2015
(Expired: 02/07/15)