José Ricardo Sousa 

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José Ricardo Sousa (guest musical director / composer) is the musical director, composer, musician, and instructor of traditional Afro-Brazilian dance and music for Bahia’s celebrated company, the Balé Folclórico da Bahia. José Ricardo initiated his arts career in percussion and dance under the tutelage of Mestre King at the SESC Dance Group in 1985. José Ricardo has extensive touring and teaching experience in Brazil, Europe, and in more than 120 cities in the United States, Australia, Malaysia, Colombia, Argentina, Chile, Canada and Benin. In the winter and spring of 2007, he toured nationally as Viver Brasil’s guest musical director and returned to compose and to perform with Viver Brasil in the fall of 2007, summer of 2008, travelled to Mexico with the company in 2009 and composed and performed with VB in 2010. Along with Luiz Badaró and Mario Pallais, José Ricardo received the prestigious Lester Horton award for excellence in music for dance in 2009. José Ricardo has conducted percussion and dance workshops with Viver Brasil’s Bahia Travel Program since 1997. In the summer of 2012, he was a guest instructor at California Brazil Camp in Northern California. José Ricardo is one of Bahia's most sought after master instructors of traditional Afro-Brazilian music and dance.