Category: Dance

Contra Dance with Janet Shepard & French Ida

Jim Crawford captured the magic of last Saturday Night’s Community Contra & Square Dance with Janet Shepard calling and French Ida playing the tunes. This dance took place on Aug 10, 2013 in the Keith House Community Room at the John C. Campbell Folk School Brasstown, NC. Thanks Jim!

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If You Want To Sing Out, Sing Out with Aubrey Atwater

Using clogging, music and storytelling to charm Folk School audiences since 1996, Aubrey exudes a talent, grace, and humor unique to only the most tenured and talented of performers. Aubrey returns to the Folk School this September to teach two dynamite classes: Singing with Clawhammer Banjo (Sept. 8-13) and Clogging (Sept. 13-15 – Weekend). She is also scheduled to perform in special Thursday night concert, Sept. 12, 7 p.m. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to learn to play, laugh, sing, and dance with Aubrey this fall!

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Interview with Annie Fain Liden-Barralon

The Folk School is so happy to welcome Annie Fain Liden-Barralon to the position of Music and Dance Coordinator! I sat down with Annie Fain to find out about her experience growing up in the Folk School community and what it’s like to return as the Music and Dance Coordinator.

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Janet Shepherd & The Dog Branch Cats

Here is a slideshow from Saturday night’s Community Contra and Square Dance! Janet Shepherd & The Dog Branch Cats brought the fun to the Keith House Community Room. (September 1, 2012)

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Brasstown Dancers greet Olympic Torch, win the Wickham Cup

Brasstown Morris Dancers greeted the Olympic Torch in Kenilworth, England, and brought home the “Gold” of West Yorkshire Morris Dancing. Except it’s not gold and they didn’t bring it home. The Wickham Cup, actually a silver plated mug, remains in its place of honor in England, but newly inscribed with the name Dame’s Rocket.

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Dance Musicians’ Week at the John C. Campbell Folk School

Dance Musicians’ Week is for the musician who is comfortable playing a few tunes on his or her instrument and wants to play for traditional contra, square, and couple dancing. It is a week of breaking out of shells, letting the “inner-musician” flourish, improving techniques of playing and arranging music, and being part of a band. It comes around once a year, in July, and I can say from experience that the larger the class, the more the fun.

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Dare to Be Square!

Over 60 square dance enthusiasts came from all over the country (and internationally!) to participate in last weekend’s “Dare to Be Square” dance workshop. Dancers came as far as California, Texas, Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Washington, Vermont, Wisconsin, New Mexico, and New York.

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Dance Callers’ Week

In conjunction with Little Middle Folk School last week, adults had some fun dance opportunities. The Dance Callers’ class gave callers great instruction and practice in calling contra and square dances. With the small class size, students benefited from plenty of personalized instruction and hands-on practice. Of course a contra dance can’t happen without dancers. Dancers also signed up for the week, to be guinea pigs for practicing callers. Energetic live music by Steve Hickman and John Devine kept everyone in high spirits.

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Many Fine Tunes: A Brief History of Dancing at the Folk School

The stories of our lives where dance and song are called for, go back to faraway lands where kings and villagers alike danced for joy.  Dance as a way to express joy that cannot be contained is part of many legends across the globe.  I know that you understand what I am talking about.  The many threads of our Southern Appalachian story can be seen beginning with the Singing Games or Play Party Games, which are a long time part of a vibrant mountain culture.  Almost any occasion where the earliest settlers and pioneers gathered, there was time to sing, clap, laugh,  and stomp in time with the music they created.  Not too different from what we do now, whenever we are together!

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