Photos: 'Batuque' blends Afro-Brazilian dance and capoeira martial arts

Arts & Culture Nikki Tundel Nikki Tundel · ·

1 Founder Marciano Silva dos Santos says his goal for Contempo Physical Dance "is to be internationally recognized for our blend of Afro-Brazilian dance, capoeira and contemporary work." 
2 Davente Gilreath, 20, practices for Batuque, Contempo's upcoming show at the Cowles Center in Minneapolis. The full-length work explores the African origins and rise of samba in Brazil. 
3 Dancer Justin Reiter, 21, gets ready for the final dress rehearsal before opening night. "It's hard to describe our style of dance," said Reiter. "Basically, it's rhythmic and sensuous and fun." 
4 Contempo dancers start their four-hour rehearsal on Jan. 31, 2013, at the Cowles Center in Minneapolis. 
5 For Orlando Hunter, 22, "dance is an emotional and spiritual release." 
6 Jenny Pennaz and Timothy Herian get in one last practice before opening night. 
7 Dancer Gemma Isaacson waits backstage for her cue. 
8 Mette Towley, 21, became obsessed with dance after watching "old dance movies like 'Grease.'" 
9 Contempo Physical Dance fuses Afro-Brazilian dance, capoeira and contemporary dance. 
10 Contempo artistic director and choreographer Marciano Silva dos Santos watches from the edge of the stage as the company's dancers rehearse in Minneapolis on Jan.31, 2013. 
11 Contempo's latest production, Batuque, features contemporary dance and samba and is set to live, original music. 
12 For Timothy Herian, dancing for Contempo "allows me to show different sides of myself that I don't usually show in everyday life." 
13 Marciano Silva dos Santos leads dance rehearsal on Jan. 31, 2013, in Minneapolis. The native of Brazil is the founder, artistic director and choreographer of Contempo Physical Dance.