Dancing with Thieves.png

Dancing with Thieves

by Cally Magalhães

£13.99 inc. p&p

In 1994, Cally, a British actress and teacher, read a magazine article about street children in São Paulo, Brazil. Deeply touched by what she read, and sensing a ‘call’ to this nation, she moved to Brazil in 1999, hoping she could do something to help. Her autobiography Dancing with Thieves tells of her personal life with its joys, struggles and disappointments; her experiences in India and Estonia, and the last twenty-one years in São Paulo where she runs The Eagle Project.

After working on the streets for ten years, she now works in youth and adult prisons leading psychodrama workshops based on the theories of Restorative Justice.

Dancing with Thieves tells of her incredible journey of faith, love and overcoming, showing that it is possible to change people's lives, one at a time. Cally is also a speaker at churches and conferences, and the mother of two teenage sons, Benjamin and Joseph.

What others are saying about Dancing with Thieves...

'Cally Magalhães’ memoir is a gripping page-turner of an autobiography. With a novelist’s eye for descriptive detail, Cally invites us to accompany her on her astonishing journey from England to India and Estonia, and finally to São Paulo, Brazil. We join her as she follows a trail of signs and blessings to bring relief, hope and healing to people who need help, wherever they may be – in the streets, the favelas, the prisons or hidden under bridges. She describes in moving detail the transformational work of The Eagle Project, using psychodrama and Restorative Justice in Brazilian prisons. To read this book is to be inspired by the positive change one person can bring to so many individual lives – changing the world one person at a time. Cally has much to teach us about being fully present for all of life’s events and challenges. With hard-won wisdom and deep reflection, she describes a life based on faith and gratitude, encapsulated in her ringing sentence, ‘When you help people who have nothing, then you realise you have everything.’ Her memoir has lessons for us all about what it means to walk the earth with grace and love.'


Clark Baim, PhD Director, Birmingham Institute for Psychodrama, UK Founder of Geese Theatre Company UK

'Wow, this book is amazing. Cally’s personality and energy dance on the pages. With an open and honest approach, she takes the reader with her on some remarkable adventures, testifying to God’s faithfulness in the midst of exciting, terrifying and heart-wrenching situations, and demonstrating what relying on God is really all about. I can’t wait to see what happens in the next chapters of Cally’s life!'


Frances Miles, Chief Relationship Officer, Stewardship

'This inspirational book is a constant journey from darkness to light: equipped with a profound understanding of theatre, play and performance and a deep faith, Cally has brought hope and positive attitudes to the lost, the desperate and the unloved. Like the biblical couple on the road to Emmaus, she talks of Jesus and shocking events whilst intervening on His behalf into the lives of those who might appear to be beyond human reach.'


Kenneth Pickering, Hon Professor of Drama, University of Kent and co-founder of the Institute for Arts in Therapy and Education, London

'An inspirational story of heartbreak, faith, hope and joy. It is wonderful to see how God has shaped and called Cally, using some of the most challenging experiences of her life to help transform the lives of the most vulnerable. A beautiful journey of discovery and the transformational power of love, from the small town of Harpenden to the streets and prisons of São Paulo.'


Nicola Temple, Head of Inspired Individuals, Tearfund

'Make no mistake, this is a faith-building book. A truly biblical hero’s journey in which an ordinary woman answers a seemingly crazy call from God and where God constantly shows up throughout the journey in remarkable and miraculous ways. You will be moved, amazed, challenged and inspired by the profound humanity on show in all its beauty and ugliness, and how one person has impacted a nation with God’s supernatural help. A timeless story of hope amidst the darkness.'


Tim Richardson Director, Waverley Learning

'Cally’s amazing story, so vividly told in Dancing with Thieves, will draw you into every stage of her personal journey of faith and inspire you to believe... Believe that God is present everywhere, from the suffering, pain, raw joy and community of the favelas of São Paulo, to the seemingly ‘perfect’ suburbs of London. Believe that God still is in the business of making all things new, with no life or circumstance too far gone for Him to restore and use for His purposes in the world. Believe that our human failings and failures, when brought before God, bring us to the place of revelation, hope and new beginnings. Believe that what is impossible for the experts of this world, is totally possible for the creator and sustainer of all things. I had the privilege of coaching Cally during a part of her incredible journey and my life was inspired as a witness to her faithful,  tenacious and dedicated response to God’s call on her life. What a gift now for many more seekers, sojourners and followers to be inspired as well through this wonderful memoir.'

Thomas G. Yaccino, Global Connector-Coach-Consultant