BatekooPhotography Lucas Hirai

BATEKOO is the party collective dancing for Brazil’s marginalised communities

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LocationSão Paulo, Brazil

    With a mix of Brazilian funk, hip hop, and many other Afro-diasporic rhythms, Salvador-born party collective BATEKOO are creating revolutionary, rebellious spaces for marginalised communities in Brazil. They stand tall and unafraid in the midst of a political atmosphere brimming with homophobia, one that constantly attempts to frighten young LGBTQ+ and black Brazilians into silence.

    Founded in late 2014, BATEKOO quickly spread beyond the clubs of Bahia and the North East of Brazil, soon becoming icons of the São Paulo party scene. Their goal has been clear from inception – to unapologetically reclaim space and centre the voices of those marginalised, whose sound and culture have been exploited, looked down upon and exoticised for decades.

    “We are proud to be able to show the world that Brazil is not only what the media is focused on,” they explain. Instead, BATEKOO are creating structural change one party at a time, tackling issues of inaccessibility and offering a space of not just representation but also of community, understanding, resistance, and celebration.

    In 2019, BATEKOO will perform abroad for the very first time, with sets at Afropunk Brooklyn and at New York City’s Summerstage Festival. They also plan to expand their message to even more platforms – launching their own record label, which will provide structural support to young artists, as well as a website, seeking to discuss intersectional matters and further centre “urban, black, and Afro-diasporic culture”. In other words: they’re going worldwide.

    Biju Belinky