By Michael Phillips

Michael Peltzer “Biquinho” is a third year transfer student from Los Angeles, California. After a few weeks in school and a last minute addition to the OPERS fair, Biquinho has started a new UCSC Capoeira class. Capoeira is a Brazilian martial art that mixes traditional fighting, dancing, music and acrobatics into one form. Biquinho has been training for four years under his master, Mestre Boneco in Capoeira Brasil ( and has achieved the rank of monitor, blue-red.

In his old hometown, Biquinho helped teach a children’s Capoeira program. Now, he is using that knowledge and experience to help with this class. Biquinho’s class meets every Saturday at two, and he does a lot of spirited training and teaches the fundamentals to the sport. The vast majority of people taking the class know very little about Capoeira, and for them it is an entirely new and invigorating experience.

On the east field and in the gym, Biquinho also practices what he calls “Flippin”. While it is not directly Capoeira, it can be used in a Capoeira. Flippin, is a series of flips and kicks Biquinho practices, and it usually involves a combination of both in multiples directions.

I chose to photograph this martial art because it seemed very original and unique. I had never heard of it until I saw Michael Peltzer’s class. Combining many different elements, Capoeira transcends fighting into an art form.

For more information, or if you are interested in joining Michael Peltzer’s class you can contact him at