Brazilian culture comes to Clovis

By Casey Peacock: Freedom Newspapers

The Viver Brasil Dance Co. will use song and dance interpretation to portray Brazilian culture during a 90-minute performance Sunday at the Marshall Junior High School Auditorium in Clovis.

Founded in 1997, the 12-member dance troupe focuses on bringing to life the Afro-Brazilian cultures, through dance, music and costumes, founder and co-director Linda Yudin said.

“We wanted to continue cultivating the Afro-Brazilian culture in Los Angeles,” Yudin said on founding the company.

On national tour, the group will present a blend of traditional and contemporary elements of the Afro-Brazilian culture, Yudin said. The first half of the performance will focus on more traditional and ritualistic aspects of the culture. During the second half, the performance will focus on contemporary Afro-Brazilian dance, the Samba and a large carnival piece, Yudin said.

“Our mission is to both entertain and educate about this very passionate culture,” Yudin said.

Funding by the New England Foundation for the Arts and the National Dance Project has allowed the dance company the opportunity to travel around the country to smaller venues. The local performance is part of the Clovis Community College Cultural Arts Series.

Through the performances, Viver Brasil Dance Co. is able to share the vibrancy and passion of the Afro-Brazilian culture still practiced today, Yudin said.

“It’s very different,” Yudin said. “It’s very vibrant. It’s traditions that are practiced even today.”

The group will also conduct a 45-minute outreach program in the Clovis Municipal Schools to share the history of the Brazilian dance and culture.

Twenty-five pre-selected students will perform with the Viver Brasil Dance Co. on stage, said Stephanie Spencer, Clovis Community College director of resource development.

“This is such an amazing opportunity for our students to interact with world-class performers,” Spencer said.

At a glance

• What: Viver Brasil Dance Co.

• When: 4 p.m. Sunday

• Where: Marshall Junior High School auditorium, Clovis

• Admission: $15 general admission, $10 students, seniors and military. Tickets available at the Clovis Community College cashier’s window, or ITT Office at Cannon Air Force Base. Tickets may also be
purchased at the door. The box office will open at 3 p.m.

• Information: 769-4956.