peep within the circle you'll discover, CAPOEIRA!
Bahia is home to Capoeira. As your days start speeding by during your visit you'll notice that, every other person is sporting these athletic uniform with the name of a group, or carrying a Berimbau, gathering in circles beating a pandeiro or drum, moving rhythmically and singing and if you get a chance to peep within the circle you'll discover ... CAPOEIRA!
Hear, see, sing, play, and try out Capoeira. An old brasilian form of, acrobatic, kicking, feet sweeping, head-butting, elbow-shoving, opponent passing, diversion, dance, martial arts involving music dance and participation from everyone including the audience.
It was created by enslaved Africans brought into Bahia. No one is too old or young to "jogar" (play) in the Roda (circle). What i just described is practiced with technique and sequences in, by Angola, Regional, Abada, or the Rua (street) capoeristas.
I had the honor of studying for 6 months at the Associacao de capoiera Mestre Bimba, under Mestre Bamba in Pelourihno. Please try it out while in bahia. There are many other schools as well. Walk along the streets of Pelourihno with your head cocked to the side so when you hear a berimbau look for a school or a capoeirista. If not watch a live full show. you can catch a daily one in Pelourihno in the Praca every day for free ask for Mestre JA MORREU or Mestre Bentihnoman whom does volunteer work with children at the Forte do Capoiera, (Capoiera Fort in Santo Antonio) . In Mercado Modelo the old African market which still has its original slave transporting cave underground intact and open for viewing. I believe Mestre Hulk leads the roda there, (you gotta love these names).
Or catch one at the Associacao do Capoeira Mestre Bimba (ask for Buda he speaks several languages or Dalva) which goes on tuesdays, thursdays and fridays, with a full capoiera, maculule and samba do roda to blow you away...Ginga!!! Yourself, some loose attire, a something to whipe the prespiration you'll aquire from either the sport itself, or the hot instructor.