José Ricardo Sousa is a master percussionist and preserver of traditional African-Brazilian music and dance. He 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 started his arts career in percussion and dance under the tutelage of Mestre King at the SESC School of the Arts in 1985. José Ricardo has toured and taught in Brazil, Europe, and in more than 120 cities in the United States, Australia, Malaysia, Colombia, Argentina, Chile, Canada, Togo, and Benin. José Ricardo received the prestigious Lester Horton Award for excellence in music for dance in 2009 with Luiz Badaró and Mario Pallais.