top of page



"The rhythm gives the dances an energy, a life force, which is uplifting to the spirit. This is why I continue to study, teach and perform Brazilian dance."


-Mary Dollar,

Artistic Director, Samba do Coraçao

SF Ethnic Dance Festival, 2001



san francisco ethnic dance festival

"If you missed this year's carnaval there's still an opportunuty to catch some excitement when Carnaval favorites Samba do Coraçao perform at the Ethnic Dance Festival on June 9 and 10. The company will perform a lively stage presentation called "Fanfarra de Carnaval" (Carnaval Fanfare) which includes the most important elements of the samba school: the bateria (percussion section), mestre sala and porta bandeira (master of ceremonies and flag bearer), bahianas (women of Bahia honoring Brazil's African roots) and cabroshas (samba dancers)."


- New Mission News









"Obviously, we found that Brazil, which has the largest population of African descent in both North and South America, was a cultural connection that could be made by both Latinos and Africans here in the Bay Area.

With the percussive bateria of Bay Area Loco Bloco, the spectacular Samba do Coraçao and the martial arts ballet of Capoeira of San Jose, the Mexican Hertitage Plaza expores the fascinating Pandora's box that is Africa in the Americas."


- Chuy Varela

Metro Silican Valley/Arts



















SF Carnaval


"Best Brazilian: Samba do Coracao performing Heart of the Jaguar (2nd overall officially) directed by Mary Dollar & Fernando de Sanjines starring Lisa Silva on vocals. 


Few individuals have devoted as much passion to enhancing a Carnaval San Francisco overall presentation as Mary Dollar and her husband Fernando. The movement was powerful in all four judged categories with exciting, original songs working as a whole with beautiful costumes, excellent synchronized choreography and a determined, winning team spirit." 


"These special individuals dedicated their major time and energy to new improvements we’ve seen this year in SF Carnaval. Winners of Best Brazilian in their last two outings ('97 & '98) they can also be seen at the Solano Stroll."


-Cris Collins,


"Here's a bit of Brazil to warm these chilly nights with the spirit of Carnaval. Kicking off La Pena's two-night presentation of Brazilian music and dance is Mary Dollar and Fernando de Sanjines's Samba do Coraçao. The San Francisco school's dance-and-drum ensemble has been named Best Brazilian Group for the last two years at Carnaval SF. Longtime members of Chalo Eduardo's Escola Nova de Samba, Sanjines and Dollar are Bay Area cultural treasures with a new CD titled Heartbeat of the Jaguar that showcases the percussive power of Sanjines, who directs a soundscape of Afro-Brazilian beats and songs featuring the lovely voice of Liza Silva and members of her Voz do Brazil band, including guitar- ace Jack Gates. This is Brazilian boogie at it's finest!"


-Eastbay Express



bottom of page