DECORAH, IOWA—The Luther College Jazz Orchestra is traveling to Brazil May 20 through June 5, where the group will perform concerts and participate in workshops in the country with prominent musicians, dancers and artists. 

Jazz Orchestra tours abroad every four years, and this will be the third time the ensemble has traveled throughout Brazil. The ensemble last toured Brazil in 2016. The international tours are an opportunity for Luther students to experience the diversity of music throughout the world. 

Luther students stain on stairs holding different instruments for group photo.

Luther College’s Jazz Orchestra will travel Brazil from May 20–June 5.

“In addition to concerts and service projects, we will take classes from prominent Brazilian musicians and dancers, get to know the cities of Salvador, São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, while enjoying their exceptional culinary arts and friendly people,” said Tony Guzmán, director of Jazz Orchestra.  

During the trip, Jazz Orchestra will perform with students at the Tatuí Conservatory of Music in São Paulo, the city’s largest music conservatory. As part of a service project in the city, they will lead a workshop at Santa Marcelina University, another music conservatory. 

Before leaving São Paulo, students will have the opportunity to take a ballroom dance workshop from professional dancers. After arriving in Rio de Janeiro, Luther students will take a drumming workshop. The ensemble will also perform a concert in the city’s botanical gardens. 

“Brazil is a country with tremendous diversity in its nature and people, showcasing a strong cultural and economic development. All jazz musicians admire and perform Brazilian music, from samba and bossa nova, to baião and frevo,” Guzmán said. “We bring the spirit of Luther College and the United States to share our music cultures with the people of Brazil, and at the same time learn from their impressive music traditions.”

Guzmán received his bachelor’s degree in music education in 1990 from Luther and holds a Ph.D. in music education, a certificate in pedagogy of music theory and a master’s degree in music education from Florida State University. An active arranger, Guzmán is known for his choral arrangements of Caribbean and Latin American music, some of which are published by Boosey & Hawkes and Oxford University Press.

About Luther College Music 

Luther is home to one of the largest undergraduate music programs in the nation, with five choirs, three orchestras, two bands and two jazz bands. One-third of all Luther students participate in music, including large ensembles, faculty-coached chamber groups, private lessons and master classes. Nearly 175 music majors study music theory, ear training, history, education, composition, jazz, church music and performance. Learn more at

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