Brazilian choro classes at Centrum

Home » Portfolios » Brazilian Choro

About Brazilian Choro

Spring 2024

Our popular Choro (pronounced “shoro”) workshop celebrates its 13th anniversary! This year, we offer an in-person version as well as an online version featuring part of each day’s offerings. The in-person version includes all of the features making this workshop a favorite. Artistic Director Dudu Maia continues to improve the schedule with an eye towards maximizing what you will learn AND the fun you’ll have playing. The faculty explores current and historical players and styles through master classes, group sessions and, of course, lots of playing. Please join us for a memorable five-days of learning experience!
choro band performing

Attend The Next Session

Brazilian Choro Workshops

Brazilian Choro Facts

  • Director: Dudu Maia
  • Established in 2010
  • Explore current and historical styles through master classes, group sessions
  • Instrumentation: strings, woodwinds, accordion, piano and hand percussion

Experience Brazilian Choro

Choro is a great way for both jazz and classically oriented musicians to meet on common ground. There are written charts with lovely and lively melodies accessible to any competent player. There’s also room for improvisation, and in a vein that’s a great way for classical musicians to expand this facet of their playing.

Participants will once again use The Choro Handbook, written by Dudu and former faculty member Henrique Santos Neto. If you don’t have a copy we can provide you with an e-copy.

You must be 18 or older to attend this program in person.

Choro Faculty

Photo of Anat Cohen

Anat Cohen


Anat Cohen has been declared Clarinetist of the Year by the Jazz Journalists Association every year since 2007 and has also been named the top clarinetist in both the readers and critics polls in DownBeat for multiple years running, and in 2009, ASCAP awarded her a Wall of Fame prize for composition and musicianship, among other honors. In October 2017 –Happy Song – the debut release from the Tentet found her drawing on diverse musical loves, from Brazilian music to African grooves, from vintage swing to touching ballads.

Photo of Alexandre Lora

Alexandre Lora


Alexandre Lora moves easily within different styles of Brazilian popular music, performing as a drummer and percussionist. He has been on the faculty of Centrum’s Choro Workshop since 2012. He has performed extensively in Europe including Amsterdam, Rotterdam and a tour of 33 cities in Spain.

Photo of Douglas Lora

Douglas Lora


Composer and guitarist Douglas Lora moves with versatility between classical and popular music, and has been established as one of the most prominent artists of his generation. A member of the Brasil Guitar Duo (with Joao Luiz) for more than fifteen years, and seven-string guitarist of the choro and samba band Caraivana, Douglas Lora has a full touring schedule worldwide, and has collaborated with artists including Paquito d’Rivera, Marco Pereira, Jovino Santos Neto, Ney Rosauro, Marina Piccinini, and many others.

Photo of Dudu Maia

Dudu Maia

Artistic Director, Choro

Dudu Maia brings a lifetime of research and study of Brazil’s greatest musical traditions to his work. A virtuoso of the bandolim (a Portuguese version of the mandolin), Dudu served for five years as the bandolim professor of Brazil’s most respected Choro school, the Escola Brasileira de Choro Raphael Rabello in Brasília.

Photo of Jovino Santos Neto

Jovino Santos Neto


Three-time Latin Grammy nominee Jovino Santos Neto, a master pianist, composer and arranger, is among the top Brazilian musicians working today. Currently based in Seattle, Washington, he has throughout his career been closely affiliated with the Brazilian master Hermeto Pascoal. He was an integral part of Pascoal’s group from 1977 to 1992, where he fine-tuned his artistry, performing around the world and co-producing several legendary records.

Photo of Daniela Spielman

Daniela Spielman


Daniela Spielmann has been part of the Brazilian choro scene since 1998 as a saxophonist, flutist, composer and arranger. Her music is current and at the same time respectful of the great Brazilian composers of the past. Her first CD as a member of the choro ensemble Rabo de Lagartixa (Gecko´s Tail) was given a critics’ the best instrumental CD of the year and in 2002 her first solo album, Brazilian Breath, was nominated for a Latin Grammy.

Workshop tuition includes admission to everything including great seats at all public performances. Tuition: $475 (limited to 60 participants) Online only: $150 Room & board: $525 (Officer’s houses) This year, all of the housing is in the beautiful, large Victorian “officer’s houses.” Two of these are designated as roda houses, where you can play as late as you like. Other houses are quieter—it’s your choice. Either way you’ll have a private room and shared bath. All rooms come with linens, blankets, and towels, but you should plan on bringing soap and personal toiletry items. All units are spacious and have full kitchens.

How do you pronounce Choro?
Choro sounds like “shoro.”

What is Choro music?
The Brazilian musical style of Choro represents the coming together of European melodic and harmonic traditions with African rhythms and sensibilities. Emerging in Brazil mid-19th century, Choro is a cousin of jazz, with a sense of yearning that is often described as a “sweet lament.” Many ethnomusicologists believe that the name Choro comes from the Portuguese verb chorar—that is, to weep or to cry. It often seems bright and happy on the surface, but if you dig deeper you’ll find a kind of sadness, a longing that Brazilians call saudade.

Something about the combination of Portuguese and Italian influences resulted in melodies with a strong romantic feeling. When joined with its African influences,

Choro has an irresistible groove and rhythmic momentum that is uniquely Brazilian.

Read more about Choro.

What does Choro sound like?
Here are some YouTube links featuring our faculty playing typical Choro tunes:

Meals are served at Fort Worden Commons. The first meal is dinner on April 19; the last meal is breakfast on April 23.

Cancellation/Refund Policy
Full payment is due by March 1, 2023. If your full payment is not made by March 1, 2023, your registration will be canceled; $325 of your deposit is nonrefundable.

Find more answers - Centrum FAQs

Who should attend?
Both classical and jazz musicians will feel comfortable in this workshop, and will enjoy expanding their skills through this style. You should be proficient on your instrument, i.e. comfortable with the mechanics of playing. There are people of different backgrounds and abilities, and we’ll be sure to match you up.

The in-person workshop is limited to 60 people and is open to strings, woodwinds, accordion/piano and hand percussion (rather than drum set). Some others are also accepted; contact Gregg Miller at gmiller@centrum (dot) org if you have a question about your instrument.

Workshops open to students age 18 and older.

Here is how you’ll spend your time:

Wednesday, April 19
4–5:30pm – Check-in, Centrum office
6–7:00pm – Dinner
7:15–9:30pm – First session
9:30pm – Welcome reception and Roda

Thursday, April 20
8–9am – Breakfast
9–10:30am – Group session with all faculty.
10:30–11am – Coffee break
11am–12:25pm – Master Classes by all faculty
12:30–1:30pm – Lunch
2–3:30pm – Group session with all faculty
3:45–5:15pm – Ensemble rehearsals with faculty
6pm – Dinner
8pm – Rodas

Friday, April 21
8–9am – Breakfast
9–10:30am – Group session with all faculty
10:30–11am – Coffee break
11am–12:25pm – Ensemble rehearsal with faculty
12:30-1:30 – Lunch
2–3:30pm – Master Classes by all faculty
4–5:30pm – Ensemble rehearsals without faculty
4–6pm – Faculty rehearsal
6pm – Dinner
8pm – Rodas

Saturday, April 22
8-9am – Breakfast
9–10am – Group Session with all faculty
10:15–11am – Coffee break and faculty, CD sales
11am–12:25pm –Ensemble rehearsal with faculty
12:30–1:30pm – Lunch
1:30–2:45pm – Master Classes by all faculty
3–4:30pm – Ensemble rehearsal without faculty
6pm – Dinner
7:30pm – Concert by Faculty
Evening – Reception and rodas

Sunday, April 23
8–9am – Breakfast
9-10:30am – Final session, participant performances
11am – Checkout; thank you!

In case you can’t attend in person, we offer an online version featuring part of each day’s offerings. The online version offers selected sessions live streamed, plus access to these sessions for a month following. The online version offers selected sessions live streamed, plus access to these sessions for a month following.

Brazilian Choro Events

Brazilian Choro Gallery

Photo Gallery

More Creative Programs

Centrum offers a variety of creative programs for artists of all ages,
experience the creative spirit.

More Events

Public Artist Talk: Courtney Desiree Morris
Oct 12, 2023 5:30pmArt

Browse The Archives

Centrum photo archives

Posts By Category