|Culture Crossing’s Weekly Feature Interview
Vanessa Isaac is a performer and co-founder of Hip Brazil. Hip Brazil brings together dance, fitness, music and lifestyle rooted in Brazil's passionate culture!
||Performer and dance instructor
||Music, dance, traveling, food, getting to known ot
Name a country where you’ve experienced cultural differences: The United States
Describe one of those experiences: When I moved to the U.S. everything was different and sometimes very exotic for me. Like the first barbecue I was invited to. They made little burgers and I thought to myself: Is this a barbecue? And I'm a vegetarian! In Brazil a barbecue is an event: plenty of food, music and lots of dance even at the small barbecues. Our big parties, like carnaval, are famous too. The New Years celebration in Brazil is amazing! I also noticed how in the United States the streets were much cleaner compared to those in most Brazilian cities. Here everything is much more organized.
What did you learn about your own culture from that experience?
I noticed that Brazilians are more spontaneous. Dancing is not only for the clubs or stage, its party of the community. It truly brings people together! When you have two homes as I do you can keep more of an objective eye about it. I keep the good positive things about Brazilian culture and blend it with the good things of American culture. For example, Americans in general are more punctual about their commitments. Brazilians are usually running late. I try to party Brazilian style and be as punctual as the Americans! At least I try! Ha, ha!
If you were going to adopt a custom, gesture, or trait from another culture,
what would it be? I would like to use those beautiful and very feminine Indian saris. Women always look so beautiful in them. I'm also fascinated by the Dia de Los Muertos in Mexico. In Brazil we have our Dia de Finados, honoring our loved ones that have passed this world, an important ritual on many levels! I sense that Mexicans have more of a sense of humor about death than Brazilians. Dia de Finados in Brazil is very sad. We can only think of how much we miss the ones that have departed. I would like to adopt a bit of humor about my own mortality.
Where would you like your next culture crossing adventure to take you?
I cannot wait to finally experience the art, food and culture of Italy!