On November 15, 2001, after 21 years in the world of capoeira, Mestre Pequinês decided to form his own group. With 17 years under his belt as an "Aluno Formado," Pequinês left Grupo Candeias, founded by Mestre Suíno. For 6 months, the newly formed group used the temporary name of "Pequinês Capoeira;" after a group-wide vote, the group took the permanent name "Grupo Capoeira Nagô" on May 9, 2002 in the capital city of Goiana, Goiás.
The long range projection of Mestre Pequinês' work started when he was only a professor. Pequinês launched a worldwide tour sponsored by the Bad Boy brand, arguably signifying his status as the best capoeirista in the world. However, Pequinês is most proud of the achievements of his formados, graduados, and professors, contra mestres and mestres who represent Capoeira Nagô in Brasil, the United States, Australia, Spain, Portugal, Italy, France, England, Germany, Holland, Colombia, Greece, Malta, México, and Peru. Combining the skillful administration of Mestre Pequinês with the dedication of his students, Capoeira Nagô is a propulsive force in the worldwide expansion of Brazilian culture through the art form known as capoeira.
MESTRE ANDRÉ GUSMÃO
Mestre André Gusmão started capoeira training at the age of 13 under the supervision of Mestre Suino from Capoeira Candeias. By the time he reached 18 years of age, he was one of the youngest capoeiristas in his hometown of Goiania, Goíás to receive the coveted ranking of Formado. In late 2001, Mestre Jelon (famously the first person to bring capoeira to the United States) invited Mestre Pequinês to bring one of his top students to New York. Mestre André was just that person. André has lived and taught capoeira in New York for close to ten years. Besides a lifelong commitment to capoeira, Mestre André brings expert-level experience in other martial arts as well. He holds a black belt in Brazilin jiu-jitsu and is a professional MMA fighter, having fought in the IFL, UFC, and ROC leagues.