Show Summary Details

Page of

Printed from Grove Music Online. Grove is a registered trademark. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a single article for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy).

date: 25 August 2019


  • Gerard Béhague


A term with various meanings in Brazilian popular music. Generically choro denotes urban instrumental ensemble music, often with one group member as a soloist. Specifically it refers to an ensemble of chorões (musician serenaders) that developed in Rio de Janeiro around 1870. One of the first known choros was organized by the popular composer and virtuoso flautist Joaquim Antonio da Silva Callado (1848–80). In the mid-19th century the instrumental ensemble generally included flute, clarinet, ophicleide, trombone, cavaquinho (a type of ukulele), guitar and a few percussion instruments (particularly the tambourine). The repertory of choro ensembles consisted mostly of dances of European origin performed at popular festivities. For the serenades the band accompanied sentimental songs, such as modinhas, performed by a solo singer. No special music was composed for the choros at that time, but such designations as polka-choro and valsa-choro indicate the nationalization of European dances in Brazil....

Access to the complete content on Grove Music Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.