Rafael & Izabel DC Weekender

Event Information

For the first time in Washington, DC... Rafael Oliveira and Izabel Ramos are coming from Rio de Janeiro for a weekend of workshops!



THURSDAY, March 19, 8:30-10:00 pm at DanceSport Dupont Circle

Circular Movements with Head Motion Workshop w/ Rafael & Izabel (Intermediate/Advanced)

Rafael & Izabel are known for their technical movements and teaching.  Challenge yourself in this class on how to travel around your partner while executing head movement. If you’re ready, come explore some of the more technically difficult movements this dance has to offer. Note: this class requires you to already be comfortable with intermediate to advanced patterns and head movement.


10:00-10:30pm Practica (for workshop attendees only)

FRIDAY, March 20, 9-10pm at Salsa with Silvia Dance Studio

Zouk Classes (Two Levels: Intermediate w/ Alisson Sandi, Beginner w/ District Zouk instructor TBA)

10pm-2am Social w/ DJ Chapibol


SATURDAY, 21st, 1-4:30pm  at  DanceSport Dupont Circle

Workshops (Open Level) - 2 hours w/ Rafael & Izabel, 1 hour w/ District Zouk

  • 1-2pm Brazilian Zouk Influences from Lambada (Open Level) w/ Ashley

The dance we know and love today as Brazilian zouk originated from lambada, known at one time as the forbidden dance. Understanding key characteristics of lambada helps enhance your connection and flavor while dancing Brazilian zouk.  Explore some of the body movement and patterns from lambada that have influenced our dance today. 

  • 2:15-3:15 pm History of Brazilian Zouk: Dance and Moves from the Start (Open Level) w/ Rafael & Izabel

Rafael has been a leader in this dance community since the early days of Brazilian zouk. Come learn about the history of this dance, including the evolution of the moves that make up its foundation and their variations.  Try dancing zouk in the way it was danced in the early days in order to better understand how we dance it today. 

  • 3:30-4:30pm How to Dance Zouk Like a Brazilian (Open Level) w/ Rafael & Izabel

If you’ve ever danced zouk with a Brazilian, you’ve probably felt a different quality of movement and connection.  Whether you aspire to travel to Brazil or just to increase the level of authenticity in your dance, this is the class for you. Learn how to add Brazilian flavor to your embrace, hips, body movement, or overall energia! 

Glen Echo Back Room

7-8pm Beginner Classes in Brazilian Zouk & West Coast Swing

8-9:30pm Zouk Dynamics & Acceleration Workshop w/ Rafael & Izabel

Learn how to take one movement and make it feel like several different movements. By learning to play with dynamics and acceleration/deceleration, you can breathe new life into all the movements you know while adding a nice layer of texture, variety and playfulness to your dance. Come explore the possibilities that dynamics and acceleration have to offer in this open level class.

SUNDAY, March 22, 12:15-1:45 pm at

Salsa with Silvia Dance Studio

 Flow Workshop w/ Rafael & Izabel (Intermediate)

Flow is a necessary component for making your basics and all the elements of your dance look advanced. Learn how to connect one move to another seamlessly and create a smooth and effortless dance.



Saturday Pass (Open Level): $75 early bird (until March 4 or until tickets sell out); $85 regular

  • Includes 5.5 hours of workshops and Saturday evening social
  • Open to dancers who are comfortable with zouk fundamentals

Full Pass (Intermediate/Advanced): $135 early bird (until March 4 or until tickets sell out); $150 regular

  • Includes 9.5 hours of workshops and Friday and Saturday evening socials
  • 3 hours of intermediate/advanced workshops on Thursday and Sunday
  • Requires familiarity with head movement and intermediate concepts and patterns

Thursday Workshop & Practica: $30 online, $35 at the door

Friday Class & Social: $15

Saturday Afternoon Workshops: $25 each

Saturday Workshops & Social: $20 (at the door)

Saturday Social only: $10 (at the door)

Sunday Workshop: $30 online, $35 at the door.

About Rafael & Izabel

Rafael & Izabel run one of the most prestigious Brazilian zouk schools in Rio de Janeiro, and have trained some of the top zouk artists from Brazil and abroad.  They have traveled throughout the world teaching Brazilian zouk, and they are coming to Washington, DC for the first time. 


About Rafael & Izabel

 With 16 years of experience in dance, Rafael Oliveira is a highly sought after performer, choreographer and instructor who is constantly on the move, travelling to perform and choreograph; acting as a consultant for various dance academies and professionals preparing them for Zouk competitions around Brazil; running workshops; and participating in many of Brazil’s most important Latin dance congresses.

Rafael presents a new vision of Zouk-Lambada, promoting possibilities to improve body movement, expression and performance.

He is currently the Director of Centro de Dança Alex de Carvalho in Rio de Janeiro and is one of Brazil’s leading Zouk-Lambada practitioners.

Izabel Ramos began her studies in dance at the age of eight. Later, she joined Escola de Dança Corpus, in Rio de Janeiro, taking courses in Classic Ballet, Modern Ballet, Jazz and Tap Dancing. She then joined Corpus Group, competing in several dance festivals in Brazil. She was a member of the dancers’ cast of Gente Inocente Show, a television-broadcasted program from Rede Globo channel, from 2000 to 2002.

She has taken part in several workshops with great professional dancers, so she could qualify and improve her dancing techniques more and more. From 2011 to 2014, she was part of a study group on classic and contemporary dance. This group was directed by dancer, dance instructor and choreographer Anderson Dionisio, where Izabel has earned the title of monitor.

At present, Izabel Ramos is taking the undergraduate course on Dance at Universidade Cândido Mendes and gives courses on Dance for Children and Classic Ballet. She is always in tune with everything, always searching for something new, something to improve her technique and her abilities to express herself and to sensitise others through her dance and her movements. She is always looking for new ways of expressing what the art of dancing means, for her and her life. 

Brazilian Zouk Dance Classes at Dancesport Dupont Circle & District Zouk. 
in Washington DC

           Rafael & Izabel DC Weekender