Reading Samba School is a 501(c)(3) non-profit based out of Reading, PA with the goal of providing cultural music education to the community. 

Create • Enlighten • Inspire


A.J. Merlino - Founder/President/Music Director    

Janelle Decker - VP/Instructor     Drew West - Secretary/Instructor

Peter Snyder - Instructor     Bryan Weber - Instructor

Avery Foster - Intern     Fred Pirollo - Intern     Natalie Moscat - Intern    

Kylie Johnston - Intern     Natalie Wiley - Intern

 What is a Brazilian Bateria?

A bateria refers to the percussion section of an ensemble, such as those performing for Carnival in Brazil. This section consists of traditional Brazilian instruments such as surdos, caixa, repinique, chocalhos, tamborims, agogos, pandeiros, cuicas, and more!

Reading Samba School performs music inspired by rhythms from all around the world to create a unique experience. Some inspirations for the compositions/arrangements are Sérgio Mendes, Airto Moreira, Carlinhos Brown, Patato, Olodum, Timbalada, and Los Van Van. 

What does the ensemble offer?

Reading Samba School offers hands on instruction for participants of every experience level, from absolute beginner to seasoned professional. 

Do I need to bring anything?

No! All of the necessary equipment is provided by the instructors.

 Do I need to read music?

No, instruction is presented in multiple ways to facilitate any educational background. However, if you desire to learn how to read music, private instruction is also offered to assist you. 

How do I sign up?

Email or Facebook message Reading Samba School: 

Where and when does the ensemble meet?

Every Wednesday from 6-7:30pm at Roop Hall in Albright College's Center for the Arts :

1621 N 13th St, Reading, PA 19604

How much does it cost to be involved with Reading Samba School?

Instruction is always free, however donations are greatly appreciated.