Leader of Axé Capoeira Chicago

Contra-Mestre Bambu has trained Capoeira since 1998. Bambu began training Capoeira on the Indiana University campus. Shortly after, he met Mestre Barrão at a capoeira encounter and was invited to join Grupo Axé Capoeira.

During his early years, Bambu taught throughout Indiana. He took every opportunity to travel, stay, and train with his Mestre. In 2004, Bambu moved to Chicago hoping to develop his academy and train capoeiristas versed in all aspects. In 2009, Bambu realized his dream by opening his own capoeira academy. In 2018, he was graduated to the status of Contra Mestre, one of only 3 non-Brazilians to ever achieve this rank in Grupo Axé Capoeira.

Today, he teaches and trains all over the world. He is one of the most respected American born capoeiristas in the world. He continues to strive to better himself, his teaching, and help all students of Capoeira regardless of their group.

Contra Mestre Bambu

Head Instructor and Owner

Jennifer Kolhouse, “Gata”, is an entertainment director of Axé Capoeira Chicago. She is a professional dancer and leader of our Brazilian performance group. Jennifer is also the founder and creative designer of MoDança Dance Apparel Company, which provides the most authentic custom made outfits for our group.

Jennifer has been dancing since she was 3 years old, training ballroom style dancing through her teenage years. When she joined Axé Capoeira Chicago she started research on Brazilian culture. She traveled to Rio de Janeiro multiple times to perform in Carnaval with famous samba schools Estácio de Sá and Mocidade Indepedente de Padre Miguel and learn about Carnaval culture from the best show-makers in the world.

By continually training with Brazil’s most well-known dance schools and instructors, Jennifer brings the best of Afro-Brazilian dance to our community, teaching various dance styles from the North East of Brazil as well as Rio style samba.

Jennifer ``Gata``

Entertainment Director & Dance Instructor