Our Bob died on Tuesday, February 4th, 2014, surrounded by friends, at Catholic Medical Center in Manchester, NH.
McQuillen, 90, had been hospitalized after suffering a stroke on Sunday.
Bob played the Nelson Monday Night dance weekly for over thirty years, as well as the Peterborough First Saturday dance. He was nationally and internationally revered for his boom-chuck piano playing and his terrible jokes.
In 2001, he founded the Johnny Trombly Memorial Scholarship fund, so that young musicians could receive lessons in traditional New England dance music. Several of the recipients chose to take lessons with Bob and so his style, learned from Johnny Trombly, will live on.
In his will, Bob designated Monadnock Folklore Society as the recipient for donations in his memory. Your Donations to the Monadnock Folklore Society in memory of Bob can be made here.
The Boston Globe
The article the David Millstone wrote about Bob when he received the Lifetime Contribution Award from Country Dance and Song Society in 2009.
Interview with Bob from 2004 for NH Heritage and Traditional Arts
Source for Bob’s CDs: Great Meadow Music
From the nh.gov.nharts website: “Apprenticeship grants fund a master traditional artist to teach an experienced apprentice in one-to-one sessions over a period of six to ten months and in this way recognize master traditional artists for their artistic excellence and commitment to preserving their heritage and support the efforts of promising apprentices who want to learn a tradition and share it with others.”
Hunt has over forty years experience in the fine and decorative arts, and has been making violins and violas at his home in Nelson for several years. Samuel is a recent recipient of the Johnny Trombley Scholarship from the Monadnock Folklore Society as a contra dance musician, studying under the great Bob McQuillen. For the past year, Samuel and Hunt have met regularly as part of Samuel’s home-schooling to learn fine woodworking skills. Now his plan under the apprenticeship is to make a violin of his own! Upon completion of the project, Samuel and Hunt will make a public presentation at the Harrisville Public Library.
The Nelson Music Collection was first published in 1969, as a “Collection of Authentic Square Dance Melodies. Compiled by Newt Tolman, a flute player from Nelson, and his piano accompanist, Kay Gilbert from Peterborough, it contains 64 tunes that might be heard at one of the local square dances. It became an important resource over the next decade as the face of square dancing evolved (and became more commonly known as contra dancing), and as young musicians aspired to learn the tunes so that they could play for the dances. Eventually it took a back seat to newer collections which offered additional and newly popularized tunes, but serious scholars and musicians remained aware of its existence. Newt and Kay also issued an LP recording of the same name, which featured many of the tunes from the book. It was one of the first commercial recordings of this music.
The Nelson Town Hall has been the center of town life for more than 150 years. In 2014, we expect the supporting structure of the hall to be renovated and repaired. The hall will be closed for a period of time, and we are currently looking for a temporary location for the MFS events, including the Monday contra dance, during the summer of 2014. Send your ideas to firstname.lastname@example.org.
As background, here is a link to recent research that has been done into the history of our beloved hall.
The Monadnock Folklore Society, a 501-(c)(3) non-profit organization, is pleased to announce that Taylor Dupuis, age 15 of Mont Vernon, NH is the 2013 Johnny Trombly Memorial Scholarship recipient.
The Johnny Trombly Memorial Scholarship fund was established in 2004 to support and encourage young musicians interested in playing piano or other instruments for traditional New England dance music, an American dance music form that includes contra-dance and square dance music. Applications are accepted January 1st through March 15th and available online on the Scholarship Application page.
Taylor has been playing fiddle for 8 years, and guitar for 2 years as well as mandolin. She currently has two music students and hopes to become a music teacher and to study in Scotland. She plays in local Contra Dance bands, loves to read, plays basketball and softball but most of all she loves playing music and doesn’t like to put her fiddle down. She was instrumental in bringing live music to her high school dance class this year. The Johnny Trombly Scholarship fund award will pay for Taylor to attend the Maine Fiddle camp in Montville, ME.
Check this out at the Country Dance and Song Society site: our friend Mary Wesley made a video documentary about the Nelson Monday dance as part of her degree at the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies in Portland, Maine.
Traditional Arts Apprenticeship grants help to preserve traditional crafts, music and dance so that future generations can continue to benefit from them. Apprenticeship grants fund a master traditional artist to teach an experienced apprentice in one-to-one sessions over a period of six to ten months and in this way recognize master traditional artists for their artistic excellence and commitment to preserving their heritage and support the efforts of promising apprentices who want to learn a tradition and share it with others.
Deadline for application is July 19th.
Join the Monadnock Folklore Society at Greenerborough in Peterborough NH all day on Saturday, May 4th.
Part home show, part tech fair, part farmer’s market, and fun-filled festival with music, sheep dog demonstrations and more, Greenerborough is entertaining and informative for folks of all ages and with a wide variety of interests.
The Monadnock Folklore Society will have an information table, many of our contra dance musicians will be playing tunes throughout the day, there will be a FLASH CONTRA at 1:15 PM (shhhh, it’s a secret), the Morris teams will dance at 3 PM, and we’ll have the regular First Saturday Dance at 8 PM.
For full information, visit the Greenerborough web page.
David Kaynor, caller and fiddler, with Sarah and Samuel Foucher, this year’s Trombly Scholarship winners, led dances at Peterborough’s South Meadow School in early April.
See wonderful pictures and the story at the Monadnock Ledger-Transcript web site: