Batala NYC

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Stacy Kovacs .jpg
Batalá NYC
OriginNew York City, New York, United States
GenresSamba reggae, Afro-Brazilian percussion
Years activeMarch 2012 - present (March 2012 - present)

Batalá NYC was the original New York City branch of the international samba reggae project called Batalá. Founded in March 2012 by Stacy Kovacs with an initial membership of 16 women, which eventually grew to a membership of over 65 women ranging in age from 14 to 70 years old. The band changed musical director in July 2016 when members split to form two bands: Batalá New York and FogoAzul NYC.


Artistic Director Stacy Kovacs first encountered members of Batalá Mundo performing in the 2011 Brazil Day celebration in New York City.[1] Following this introduction to Batalá and a growing interest in samba reggae, Kovacs traveled to Brazil in 2012 for that year's Carnaval in Salvador da Bahia. Kovacs brought back 35 drums, and Batalá NYC had their first rehearsal in March 2012.[citation needed]

Batalá NYC dissolved in July, 2016. Most of its members then created Batalá New York, a continuation of the original band: an all-female, female-led banda de percussão (percussion-based band) that promotes Afro-Brazilian culture and women's empowerment through high energy, visually stimulating percussion performances. Batalá New York plays from the same repertoire of northeastern Brazilian songs that Batalá NYC drew upon. It is a chapter of the broader global arts project Batalá Mundo.[citation needed]

Kovacs, together with some members of the original Batalá NYC, founded a new musical entity she named FogoAzul NYC, now playing the music of Marcus Santos' music education network Grooversity. FogoAzul NYC now has 70 women drummers who are there to drum and enjoy the music of Grooversity and Brazil. The band takes women of all musical levels, mostly beginners, and teaches them to drum. FogoAzul means Blue Fire in Portuguese.[citation needed]


Batalá NYC performed with notable acts such as The Rolling Stones,[2][failed verification] participated in many events including New York's Village Halloween Parade,[3] and took part in benefit concerts for One Billion Rising.[4] The band was also featured on the cover of Issue 11 of Tom Tom Magazine.[5]


  1. ^ "Almost Famous: Stacy Kovacs, Batalá NYC". 27 March 2013.
  2. ^ "Rolling Stones Star-Studded One More Shot". American Top 40 With Ryan Seacrest. December 17, 2012. Archived from the original on September 23, 2015. Retrieved February 25, 2015.
  3. ^ "Garden of Delights Thrill at the Village Halloween Parade". NYC Parade Life. November 2, 2014.
  4. ^ "Look Who's Artistic Uprising on 7 February in NYC". 1 Billion Rising. January 23, 2015.
  5. ^ Abovitz, Mindy (Fall 2012). "Batalá NYC: Bringing Samba Reggae to Brooklyn". Tom Tom Magazine.

External links[edit]