2018 Class Descriptions

Period One

A. Challenging Contras

9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.

Wendy Graham Settle (A)

Spicy and spirited dances that feature new, unusual, and interesting choreographer to challenge your body and brain. Let’s dance!

B. Beginning Waltzing

Tim Lamm/Paula Harrison (B)

Most Country or Contra Dance evenings include a free waltz or two. This class will enhance your enjoyment of waltzing, as well as that of your partners! You will learn the turning, folk-style waltz and some simple variations, skills useful also at weddings and other social dance occasions. The class will include some set dances that incorporate waltzing. Techniques of leading and following will be emphasized every day, so that you and your partner can move gracefully together on the dance floor.

C. Morris Dancing

Gillian Stewart (U)

In this year’s morris class, we’ll take a look at the similarities underlying Playford-style English country dance and morris dancing. After spending the first few days of class getting the basics of a traditional morris dance under our belts, we’ll take inspiration from our favorite ECD tunes and write a new dance. Along the way we’ll work on dancing as a set, think about what makes a good performance, and learn to work in concert with a musician. Open to all levels, bring sneakers or similarly supportive athletic shoes.

D. Intermediate Recorder

Wayne Hankin (I)

Open to all with abilities to play different sizes of recorder. Must be able to read music as we’ll be exploring music from several centuries.

E. English Callers Workshop

Brad Foster (U)

This workshop will include time for practice teaching and the discussion of various topics. Topics will include dance programming, teaching figures and steps, working with beginners and mixed-experience crowds, working with your band, stage presence and crowd control.

F. Singing in Harmony

Aubrey Atwater/Elwood Donnelly (U)

We’ll have a different theme each day, learning as many songs as possible on that day. Expect rounds, pub songs, winter songs and carols, lullabies, and songs of social change. The main focus of this class will be the joy of singing together, as there is nothing quite as satisfying as voices coming together in harmony. This music is perfect for community singing, so all experience levels are welcome.

G. Rapper 101

Jeremy Carter-Gordon (B)

Get ready for rapper sword dancing, an exciting, fast-paced sword dance from northern England. In the class we will learn the percussive stepping, traditional and newly created figures, and how to move and work together as a team, getting ready to put together a dance with your new skills. Bring hard-soled shoes if you have them and get ready for some excitement!

Period Two

A. Advanced English Country Dance

10:15 a.m. – 11:15 a.m.

Brad Foster (A)

The beauty of English Country is often in the fine details. We’ll explore a wide variety of historical reconstructions and modern compositions with a focus on the timing and transitions that can make them even more beautiful.

B. Intermediate English Country Dance

David Millstone (I)

Beginning English country dancers often focus on learning the figures. For dancers comfortable with those basics, in this session we’ll look at some other elements that bring choreography to life and make music visible: connect discrete figures into seamless flow, acknowledge and support partners and neighbors, move in a variety of moods, and spread joy as you travel… in short, how to dance! We’ll revisit familiar older dances and explore many recent compositions.

C. Beginning English Country Dance

Mary Harrell (B)

In this class, the fun and sociability of the dances will be stressed, along with learning the recurring basic figures, to build a beginning repertoire.  The fundamentals of the waltz will also be taught.

D. Songs from the Past to the Present

Donna & Lewis Lamb (U)

This class will be a sharing time for old and new folk songs and bluegrass. Come all and have fun with singing. If you play an instrument, bring it along.

E. Writing Dances

Wendy Graham Settle (U)

If you ever wondered, “What goes into writing a really great dance?” — this class is for you! Whether starting from scratch or perfecting dances in progress, we’ll work together to create dance masterpieces with a playful and creative approach during this highly interactive, participatory class. There’s something for everyone: both novice and experienced writers are encouraged to bring your ideas and questions.

F. I Can Tell a Story!/Beginning Storytelling

Jim Pfitzer (B)

This workshop for beginners will introduce participants to short, simple stories from cultures around the world that they can tell. Some of the stories we use will be familiar folk tales, others are sure to be new to students. We will have fun finding our individual voices, playing with the stories, and engaging in sometimes silly exercises. Before the week is over, every participant will have at least one story they can tell.

G. Jews Harp

Wayne Hankin (U)

Come all harp twangers advanced or beginner and show up to class cause it’s a real winner. You’ll learn all techniques, whatever your abilities be, and twang your way to jews harp virtuosity. We’ll even learn tricks and a few more I know, and show them off in parlor and hence steal the show.

I. Beginning Clogging/Flatfooting

Becky Hill (B)

We will explore both clogging and flatfooting, learn how to create our own steps, and how to improvise to live Appalachian old-time music. Appalachian percussive dance is a blend of Irish, West African, and Native American Indian dances and is a vibrant American dance tradition. We will explore the basics of buck dance, flatfooting and clogging and learn steps from Thomas Maupin, Robert Dotson and many others. No previous experience necessary, bring smooth soled or leather bottom shoes.

Period Three

 

A. Morningsong & Stories

11:30 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.

 

Patty Tarter (U)

This is a time for the entire CCDS community to gather together for music and fellowship. Participants are welcome to share songs or stories, or just come for the joy of singing together.

Period Four

A. In the Beginning – Contra

1:45 p.m. – 2:45 p.m.

Chrissy Davis-Camp (B)

It’s not just about the moves or the fancy spins and twirls. It’s the combination of the music, the musicians, the caller, the fellow dancers, the dance hall and the dance moves. Remember the first time you went to a contra dance? Were you invited by a friend? Did you ask anyone to dance with you or did you wait to be asked? The best way to become a better contra dancer is to dance. So let’s DANCE!

B. Kentucky Set Running

Jim Napier Stites & Ben Napier (U)

All ages and experience levels will enjoy this class.  Dance figures taught will be those included in Kentucky Mountain Square Dancing by Patrick E. Napier.  Many of the figures have not changed since the Appalachian Mountains were first settled.  Some figures will be familiar to those with experience dancing Appalachian Big Set.  Beginners will learn enough figures to dance all night long, and experienced dancers will enjoy dancing to the finest music around!

C. Social Dances of Early America

Jim Morrison (U)

Country Dances, cotillions, and reels were the ballroom dances inherited by the newly independent United States from European emigrants. In the last decades of the 18th century Americans began to adapt these dances to suit practical necessities as well as a desire for cultural independence. Dust off your rigadoons and contretemps (or come prepared to learn them.)

D. Beginning Mountain Dulcimer

Elwood Donnelly (B)

MOUNTAIN DULCIMER IN D-A-dd TUNING     Beginner to Intermediate

USING THE NOTER: Participants will learn how to play in one of the most ancient and haunting, yet quite simple, methods of playing. Instruction includes learning to hold the noter most effectively, as well as a few tricks for ornamentation such as sliding, hammering down, and pulling off.

CHORDING, STRUMMING AND SINGING: Participants will learn basic chords for this Mixolydian tuning and how to strum accompanying rhythms while singing and playing at the same time!

FINGER-PICKING FOR COMMON TIME AND WALTZ TIME: Participants will learn two finger-picking patterns which complement singing and playing.

E. Beginning Recorder

Wayne Hankin (B)

This workshop will include time for practice teaching and the discussion of various topics. Topics will include dance programming, teaching figures and steps, working with beginners and mixed-experience crowds, working with your band, stage presence and crowd control.

F. What Do I Do With This?/Intermediate Storytelling (2 hours)

Jim Pfitzer (I/A)

Have a moment in your life, an anecdote, or just an idea that you think might make a good story? This workshop for the storyteller with some experience is the opportunity to find, expand, and tell that story you always wanted to share but weren’t sure what to do with. We will look at what the elements of a good story are and work together to turn those ideas into real stories. Every participant will receive one-on-one feedback from Jim and work with other students in creating his or her story.

G. Ballads

Aubrey Atwater (U)

Traditional Anglo, Celtic, Appalachian and Ozark ballads certainly leave no stones unturned when it comes to the human experience! Aubrey will present a swath of story songs with themes of work, the sea, humor, love, disguise, betrayal, murder, longing, nature, and more. Participants are welcome to share ballads they know as well!

H. Intermediate Temari Craft

Eric Crowden (I)

Ready to take temari to another level?  You will learn a more complex division of the ball that will lead to even more intricate and fascinating designs.   This class is suitable for people who have had the Beginning Temari class at Dance School or who have learned temari basics elsewhere.

($15 material fee payable at class) (25 person limit for the class)

I. MUMM(s)ers the Word

Sarah Jo Jacobs (U)

The super secret never before seen play created by you. Come ready to move and play.

J. Intermediate/Advanced Clogging/Flatfooting

Becky Hill (I)

We will explore footwork and choreography based in Appalachian Percussive Dance looking at musicality, technique and improvisation. We will start class with daily drills to get clean percussive sounds, explore how to dance solo and in a group and have fun doing all of it.

Period Five

A. The Many Moods of English

3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

David Millstone (U)

English for all! English country dance offers extraordinary variety: formations, meter, tempo, energy level. We’ll pay particular attention to these variables and how our bodies (and brains) respond to each. Beginners will enjoy learning the basic elements in a supportive atmosphere; more experienced dancers will appreciate a mix of old favorites and new compositions, knowing that they’re also bringing new dancers into the ECD community.

B. Intermediate Waltzing

Tim Lamm/Paula Harrison (U)

If you already know how to do a basic turning, folk-style waltz and you want to enjoy a whole period of waltzing each day, this class is for you. You will learn some secrets for achieving the smoothest, most graceful waltz possible. We will teach a range of variations, from swing moves and cuddles to twirls, pivots, and reverse waltzing. Musicality (fitting your dancing to the music) and good partnering skills will be emphasized every day.

C. West Virginia Square Dances

Becky Hill (U)

This workshop will focus on Appalachian dance traditions, specifically big circle and four couple square figures found and collected from West Virginia master square dance callers; Mack Samples, Lou Maiuri, Ellen & Eugene Ratcliffe, Bill Ohse and many others. We’ll present the basics of calling, choreography, patter and teaching. A major facet of community dance is inclusion, therefore no prior experience is necessary, and all ages are welcome.

D. Intermediate/Advanced Dance Band

David Crandall (I/A)

This class will be a chance for the intermediate/advanced player to move beyond “just playing the tune” and into the inner game of dance musicianship. We’ll explore ways of thinking strategically about rhythm, tune choice, harmonies, counter-melodies, and other aspects of the art of levitating others through the use of wind, wood and string. All sorts of instruments and styles welcome!

E. Beginning Dance Band

Elvie Miller (B)

We’ll explore a variety of contra dance tunes and styles and discover what makes dancers want to move. In between playing, we’ll develop creative and exciting arrangements. Learning by ear will be encouraged.

F. What Do I Do With This?/Intermediate Storytelling (2 hours) (Continued from Period Four)

Jim Pfitzer (I/A)

G. Calling American Contras & Squares

Wendy Graham Settle (U)

Are you curious what it takes to call a dance or want to finesse your calling style? Get hands-on guidance, tricks, tips and tools during this highly interactive, participatory class. Whether you are a budding or a seasoned caller, everyone will build a useful callers toolkit.

H. Basketry for All (Two)

Janet Northern (U)

We will be using the same materials and techniques as in the first class to create one-of-a-kind baskets. If you have taken this class before, I will encourage you to try different patterns and weaving styles. There will be a basic basket for those who have not made baskets before. You can choose to keep your basket very simple or feel free to experiment and try new things.

($15 material fee payable at class) (20 person limit for the class)

I. Rapper (de)constructed

Jeremy Carter-Gordon (I/A)

How do I create new figures? How can we transition figures outside of “guard?” This works, but why? Let’s explore these questions about rapper “theory” and more through learning together. Get ready to focus on combinations of figures, strengthening teamwork (have you danced with a blindfold before?) and understanding what is really going on in a dance!  Previous experience in rapper dancing, including comfort with stepping is necessary as we’ll be moving through the figures quickly.

Period Six

A. Contra Dance Open Mic/Open Band

4:15 p.m. – 5:15 p.m.

David Millstone/Dean Herington (U)

For dancers, this is another time in the day to enjoy the energy of contras and squares, led by your fellow campers. Callers have this opportunity for more practice, whether it’s sharing a favorite dance or trying something new in a supportive atmosphere; if requested, you’ll receive constructive comments from David Millstone. Musicians are encouraged to join the band and make a new sound under the guidance of Dean Herington.

B. Kerry Sets

Owen Morrison/Jim Morrison (U)

We will focus on dances from the Sliabh Luachra region of Ireland, on the borderlands of Cork and Kerry. These Irish cousins of American square dances are danced to fast paced polkas and slides along with the occasional hornpipe. No experience is necessary.

C. Squares I Love

Chrissy Davis-Camp (U)

Southern, New England, Mixer, or Singing Squares-I love them all! I like the quick tempo of the music. I like that there are only 7 other people in my group to smile and interact with. I like that the patterns can be a little on the challenging side OR, if I’ve got a crowd of beginners, the patterns can be simple and easily put into action. I like that there is a beginning, middle and end in a square dance. Wherever you are in your squares comfort level, I hope you will give this class a try. Hopefully, you will come away satisfied at accepting the challenge of dancing squares.

D. Playing Harmonica

Elwood Donnelly (B/I)

NOTES, CHORDS AND TUNES: Participants will learn how to play notes, chords, and tunes in the key of ‘C’ harmonica. We will also explore two positions on the harmonica: melody and blues styles. Harmonicas will be available for $10 or students may bring their own.

E. Intermediate Mountain Dulcimer

Aubrey Atwater (I)

The dulcimer will be approached from a number of angles during this exciting class: singing and playing chords, trying different tunings, using the traditional noter, strumming and fingerpicking, and any other topics that may “happen” as a result of group chemistry. Please bring a dulcimer in good playing condition and any accessories you wish to have, including a recording device.

F. Duet Singing

Kent Gilbert (U)

Experience a wonderful American four-part a capella tradition! “Shaped” notes refers to the different shapes given to various notes on the staff, designed to help singers learn tunes in glorious harmony. No prior experience or knowledge of music is necessary (but helpful) as we sing from the “The Sacred Harp” a collection of tunes both old and new in the tradition. Music and good company provided!

G. Beginning Temari Craft

Eric Crowden (B)

Temari is an ancient Japanese handcraft of first thread-wrapping a ball and then embroidering colorful designs across the surface. You will learn to create the base, some basic stitching techniques and different patterns that can open up endless design possibilities.

($15 material fee payable at class) (25 person limit for the class)

H. Longsword for All

Jeremy Carter-Gordon (U)

Join in the lively, traditional longsword dance from the fishing village of Flamborough. The dance uses wooden swords (held in the left hand!), is danced with a step-hop, and has the coolest hey in sword dancing. Wear sneakers or other shoes with a good grip. Traditional blue fisherman’s ganseys (sweaters) are optional!