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Save the Date for Colorado Brazil Fest 2017: August 3-6


  • August 3: Baur’s Listening Lounge (Denver)

  • August 4: Shine Restaurant & Gathering Place & Pearl St. Mall (Boulder)

  • August 5: Fox Theater (Boulder)

  • August 6: Boulder Beer Pub (Boulder)

We are still in the process of curating the artists and instructors for the festival.

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 Workshop Descriptions (2016)

Please see workshop descriptions below:

  • Orixa dance and Samba de Roda with Rodson Santos

The gods of the Afro-Brazilian Candomblé religion are called Orixás. Dance, drums and song are the basic elements in its religious ceremonies. These rhythms and dance movements are used in dance lessons, stage performances and other non-religious contexts, and are used regularly in folklore events in Brazil. Samba de Roda is a traditional Brazilian dance from the region of Recôncavo located in the state of Bahia. It combines traditions of African Slaves and those of the Portuguese. Dancers performing the dance form a circle or “roda”. Each dancer takes a turn by dancing in the circle. Those in the circle accompany the dancer by clapping their hands and singing.

  • Maracatu and Samba Afro combo with Rodson Santos

Maracatu is an Afro-Brazilian performance genre practiced in the North-Eastern state of Pernambuco, mainly in the cities of Recife and Olinda. Traditional maracatu groups perform by parading with a drumming group of 80-100, a singer and chorus, a coterie of dancers and stock characters including a king and a queen, as well as the calunga, a doll representing the ancestors. The Samba Afro combo portion incorporates Afro-Brazilian roots such and the rhythms of samba, in the tradition of the famous blocos afros (carnaval groups) from Salvador, Bahia.

  • Samba Reggae with Rodson Santos

Samba-reggae is a music genre from Salvador, Bahia, derived as a blend of Brazilian samba with Jamaican reggae. Samba-reggae arose in the context of the black pride movement that occurred in the city of Salvador de Bahia, around the 1970s. Samba-reggae has given rise to a style of African-influenced dance derived from Afro-Brazilian and candomble dance moves. In a social setting, samba-reggae dances tend to be done in a follow-the-leader fashion, with a few skilled dancers initiating moves in a line in front of the crowd, and the whole crowd then following along.

  • Forró Partner Dancing with Luciana da Silva

Forró is a genre of Brazilian music that originated in Northeastern Brazil. It encompasses various dance styles as well as a number of different musical beats. Forró is danced in pairs, usually very close together, with the man’s left hand holding the woman’s right hand as in the Waltz, his right arm around her back and her left arm around his neck; This is a dance class for anyone interested on having fun while connecting to each other and Brazilian culture through language, movement and music.

  • Beginner Samba no Pé (Solo Samba Dancing) with Luciana da Silva

A series of movements like walks, jumps, and turns, plus many more that are specific to men and women will be used to make dance combinations, in addition to samba no pé. We will start dancing with slow tempo music to develop the confidence necessary to execute the sequences, gradually moving up to faster tempos.

Choro music is based on what we know as samba-style or bossa nova rhythms and played on a guitar or other fretted stringed instrument, plus flute or clarinet and percussion. This is a hands on workshop. Any instrument or none at all. All three Meyer Ferreira sisters are fluent in English. Learn about the great tradition and techniques of Choro music, one of Brazil’s, and the World’s, great music.

  • Samba Drumming For Kids with Vincent Gonzales: 

Kids ages 3 to 10 will enjoy learning about the percussion instruments and rhythms of Brazilian samba music with Vincent Gonzales and members of the Bateria Alegria performance group.  Participants will clap, shake, move, and drum along in this highly interactive workshop designed to energize and entertain.

  • Bateria Intro Class (Age: 16+) with Carl Dixon

This workshop will introduce participants to the instruments, techniques, and rhythms of Brazilian samba music, focusing on the samba material played by Bateria Alegria, the percussion ensemble from the Boulder Samba School. With up to eight different samba percussion instruments to choose from, there is something for everyone. Jump in and learn to play samba. No experience needed.

  • Advanced Pagode Workshop with Ronaldo Andrade

This class is meant for those who have studied pagode samba extensively, and students will bring their skills to this ensemble setting. For a more basic class covering the fundamental rhythms of pagode samba, please see our Intro to Pagode workshop.

  • Vocal Lessons with Moyseis Marques

These workshops will focus on vocal techniques and the way of singing different Brazilian songs and styles, including correct pronunciation of Portuguese, with some discussion of anatomy and physiology of the larynx, breathing, and vocal warm-ups. Songs will be chosen from  Brazilian Popular Music (MPB), focusing on different Brazilian rhythms and composers.


MoyseisMoyseis Marques is a brazilian singer-songwriter born in Minas Gerais, the land of legendary Brazilian composers Milton Nascimento and Ary Barroso. Moyseis built his career in Rio de Janeiro’s famous bohemian Lapa neighborhood, as founding member of three bands: Forró na Contramão, Casuarina, and Tempero Carioca. He has also recorded 4 solo albums in samba and MPB styles, with mostly original compositions. 

Ronaldo Andrade image 2015Ronaldo Andrade wasborn and raised in Brazil, where he became a samba vocalist and true master of cavaquinho, guitar, and percussion. He has been on the faculty of California Brazil Camp for several years, and regularly performs in New York City with his band Turma do Samba and around the US. Now with a collection of songs on iTunes, Ronaldo will bring his repertoire of pagode-style samba and original compositions to Colorado.

Rodson Santos de Jesus is a Brazilian native who has performed and taught all over the world. A former dancer with ‎Balé Folclórico da Bahia and Dance Brazil, he is known for his energy and talent. Rodson has an extensive background in Afro-Brazilian and modern dance. The rich cultural environment of Salvador provided him with both the opportunity to continuously hone his skills, as well as teach and perform in a wide variety of settings. Rodson is both a dynamic performer and a dedicated teacher, beloved for his high-energy, inspiring classes and his patient ability to break down steps and share the art of dance with his students.

luciana_web Luciana da Silva, native from Brazil, is a Brazilian dance teacher and performing artist. She has been teaching Brazilian dance in the U.S. for over a decade and is the producer of an annual show in Colorado called Viva Brasil! Luciana has a deep understanding of various Brazilian dance genres and related music styles through her continuous training with some of the best known master dance teachers in Brazil. She also regularly attends the carnival in Brazil to stay up‐to‐date on the latest trends found among the best samba schools in Rio. Luciana has bee an important representative of Brazilian culture in Colorado. Currently, she resides in Boulder and teaches Samba and Forró in Boulder and Denver.

Francisco Marques is actively engaged in the creation and dissemination of Brazilian music in the Rocky Mountain area has played with a multitude of Brazilian music ensembles based out of Boulder, CO. Born in São Paulo, Brasil, he was raised in the Washington D.C. area and graduated from Colby College in 2000 where he received a BA in Music with a focus on classical guitar. He has been playing in the Boulder area since June of 2000 with many bands in a variety of styles. Francisco passionately teaches samba and pagode workshops in Boulder, and leads the student performance ensemble Chegando Lá. Francisco also is a member of Brazilian music bands Sambadendê and Ginga, also featured in Colorado Brazil Fest. For more info: 

Carl Dixon image 2015Carl Dixon is the director of Bateria Alegria and the lead instructor of the Boulder Samba School.  He is a professional percussionist, and holds degrees in percussion performance from the University of Colorado-Boulder (MM) and the University of Wisconsin-Madison (BM). Carl performs with the Brazilian music band GingaBesides Brazilian music, Carl plays in professional orchestras, jazz and world music ensembles, teaches percussion and world music at the University of Colorado-Boulder, and teaches private lessons in all styles and percussion instruments.  For more information, visit


chorodas3Choro das 3 is a Brazilian Instrumental Music Band formed by three sisters and their father. Corina plays flute and piccolo, Lia plays acoustic 7 string guitar, Elisa plays mandolin, clarinet, banjo and piano and Eduardo plays pandeiro (the Brazilian tambourine). For the last three years have done a USA tour. Last year they spent three months in the US and they performed over 40 concerts.
They played and taught workshops in many Festivals and Universities in the US. On each of their USA tours they have appeared at Mike Marshall’s and David Grisman’s Mandolin Symposium.