☼ ☼ ☼ Peterborough First Saturday Contra Dance

catapult-profile-lukeThe Monadnock Folklore Society presents the Peterborough NH First Saturday Contra Dance on February 7th, featuring Luke Donforth calling with the band “Shindy.”

Luke Donforth started contra dancing a decade ago in New York, and has called and shared his love of contra dancing from California to Texas to Vermont. He’s an emerging choreographer of new dances, and draws on the wealth of dances and dance traditions from everywhere he travels.

Shindy performs exciting tunes from the Irish, Scottish and New England music traditions, played with joy and drive. Based in New England, Shindy is a band of devoted and experienced instrumentalists who will inspire both dancers and musicians alike. They are Randy Miller, fiddle, Julie Vallimont, piano, Jim DiCarlo, flute, and Roger Kahle, guitar.

The dancing begins at 8:00 PM, with an optional introductory workshop beforehand. Admission is $10 or $7 for students and seniors. The dance also hosts an open jam session for beginning and intermediate musicians from 6:45 – 7:30 PM.

There will be a special workshop at 9:30 PM led by Luke Donforth. Luke will demonstrate how to safely incorporate embellishments to contra dance moves. These “ornaments” derive from swing dance and other forms of couple dances. All are welcome and there is no additional charge for the workshop.

The dance takes place in the historic Town House in Peterborough, NH at 1 Grove Street. For more information call 603.762.0235 or visit www.monadnockfolk.org. The Monadnock Folklore Society has presented contra dances and concerts of traditional music since 1982.

28th Annual Ralph Page Dance Legacy Weekend Takes Place January 16-18, 2015 at UNH-Durham

The 28th Annual Ralph Page Dance Legacy Weekend (RPDLW) is being held at the University of New Hampshire on January 16, 17 and 18, 2015. The annual three-day event features some of the finest callers and musicians from New England and across the country, and provides people of all ages and abilities the opportunity to dance and socialize in a warm and friendly setting. The RPDLW runs from 7:30pm on Friday evening until 4:00pm on Sunday afternoon. Attendees can register for the entire weekend, or pick-and-choose the sessions of interest to them. Both pre- and on-site-registration is available. The RPDLW takes place at the Memorial Union Building on the campus of the University of New Hampshire in Durham, NH. A complete schedule of events and registration information can be found at www.ralphpage.neffa.org.
Callers for the 2015 RPDLW are three well-known and accomplished professionals; David Millstone (also current President of the Country Dance and Song Society), Carol Ormand and Mary Wesley. Each of these dance masters is known for their clear calling style and genuine connection with the dancers. David, Carol and Mary will be accompanied by three fabulous bands: Rodney Miller and Friends (Rodney Miller, David Surette and Gordon Peery); Riptide (Alden Robinson, Owen Marshall and Glen Loper); and the Sugar River String Band (Jane Orzechowski & family and Deanna Stiles), for the Friday night dance.
A very special part of the Weekend each year is the Retrospective on Saturday that highlights a prominent caller, musician or dance style. The 2015 Retrospective will focus on: One Hundred Years of CDSS (the Country Dance and Song Society). This special session will focus on the important
role of this organization, and their contributions & influences to the world of traditional dance.
In addition, there will be Workshops on calling, music and dance for those who wish to hone their craft or improve their skills in any of these areas. Workshops are lead by the talented callers and
musicians on staff for this Weekend.
The Ralph Page Dance Legacy Weekend is sponsored by the Ralph Page Memorial Committee of
the New England Folk Festival Association (NEFFA), and the Milne Special Collections at the University of New Hampshire Library.
The full weekend adult fee is $80 (lodging and meals not included). Admission to individual sessions may be purchased a-la-carte:
o $13 each: Fri. evening; Sat. morning; Sat. afternoon; Sun. morning. o $8: Sun. afternoon.
o $20: Saturday night.
o Children under 12 are free.
o See web site for additional discount opportunities!
For more information on the Weekend, its schedule and registration; please go to www.ralphpage.neffa.org. Further details may also be obtained by contacting Dave Bateman, Ralph Page Committee Chairperson, at 603-397-0042 or rpdlw.registrar@comcast.net.

Brattleboro Contra Dance

Mary Wesley calls with
Ross Harriss and Christopher Jacoby

The dance takes place in the Stone Church at the corner of Main and Grove Streets, just north of the post office in downtown Brattleboro, VT.

The dance starts with a workshop for beginners at 6:45 and continues with dancing for all from 7:00 to 10:00 PM. Admission is $10. Beginners are welcome; all the dances will be taught.

The Brattleboro dance is organized by a group of local volunteers including Peter Siegel, Erich Kruger, and Bre Ginty. If you have questions about the dance or want more information you can email Peter or call 413-320-2729. www.petersiegel.com

We welcome musicians to hang out and play tunes together at a slow, informal jam session before every dance. All instruments and skill levels are welcome starting at 5:30 PM and going until around 6:30.

Brattleboro Contra Dance

Adina Gordon Calls with
Phoenix: Corey Walters, Nora Smith, Christopher Jacoby

The dance takes place in the Stone Church at the corner of Main and Grove Streets, just north of the post office in downtown Brattleboro, VT.

The dance starts with a workshop for beginners at 6:45 and continues with dancing for all from 7:00 to 10:00 PM. Admission is $10. Beginners are welcome; all the dances will be taught.

The Brattleboro dance is organized by a group of local volunteers including Peter Siegel, Erich Kruger, and Bre Ginty. If you have questions about the dance or want more information you can email Peter or call 413-320-2729. www.petersiegel.com

We welcome musicians to hang out and play tunes together at a slow, informal jam session before every dance. All instruments and skill levels are welcome starting at 5:30 PM and going until around 6:30.

Brattleboro Contra Dance

Will Mentor Calls with
Pete’s Posse (Pete Sutherland and friends)

The dance takes place in the Stone Church at the corner of Main and Grove Streets, just north of the post office in downtown Brattleboro, VT.

The dance starts with a workshop for beginners at 6:45 and continues with dancing for all from 7:00 to 10:00 PM. Admission is $10. Beginners are welcome; all the dances will be taught.

The Brattleboro dance is organized by a group of local volunteers including Peter Siegel, Erich Kruger, and Bre Ginty. If you have questions about the dance or want more information you can email Peter or call 413-320-2729. www.petersiegel.com

We welcome musicians to hang out and play tunes together at a slow, informal jam session before every dance. All instruments and skill levels are welcome starting at 5:30 PM and going until around 6:30.

Brattleboro Square Dance

HOLIDAY SQUARE DANCE
Will Mentor and Nils Fredland call with
Julie Metcalf, Peter Siegel, Stuart Kenney, and Mark Roberts

The dance takes place in the Stone Church at the corner of Main and Grove Streets, just north of the post office in downtown Brattleboro, VT.

The dance starts with a workshop for beginners at 6:45 and continues with dancing for all from 7:00 to 10:00 PM. Admission is $10. Beginners are welcome; all the dances will be taught.

The Brattleboro dance is organized by a group of local volunteers including Peter Siegel, Erich Kruger, and Bre Ginty. If you have questions about the dance or want more information you can email Peter or call 413-320-2729. www.petersiegel.com

We welcome musicians to hang out and play tunes together at a slow, informal jam session before every dance. All instruments and skill levels are welcome starting at 5:30 PM and going until around 6:30.

Brattleboro Contra Dance

Rebecca Lay calls with
Becky and the Murphy Boys
(Becky Tracy, Keith Murphy, and Aidan Murphy)

The dance takes place in the Stone Church at the corner of Main and Grove Streets, just north of the post office in downtown Brattleboro, VT.

The dance starts with a workshop for beginners at 6:45 and continues with dancing for all from 7:00 to 10:00 PM. Admission is $10. Beginners are welcome; all the dances will be taught.

The Brattleboro dance is organized by a group of local volunteers including Peter Siegel, Erich Kruger, and Bre Ginty. If you have questions about the dance or want more information you can email Peter or call 413-320-2729. www.petersiegel.com

We welcome musicians to hang out and play tunes together at a slow, informal jam session before every dance. All instruments and skill levels are welcome starting at 5:30 PM and going until around 6:30.

☼ ☼ ☼ CANCELED: Peterborough First Saturday Contra Dance

Tonight’s dance at the Peterborough NH Town Hall is canceled. The National Weather Service has upgraded their forecast to a Winter Storm Warning, and as they say: A Winter Storm Warning means significant amounts of snow. sleet, and ice are expected or occurring. This will make travel very hazardous or impossible.

Please stay safe wherever you are and we’ll see you on Saturday February 7th for a great dance with Luke Donforth calling and the band Shindy: Randy Miller, Julie Vallimont, Roger Kahle and Jim DiCarlo.

Come early on Feb. 7th to hear Randy Miller’s presentation about John Taggert, fiddler, and his stories of dances in the Monadnock region during the 1800s and 1900s. 5:30 PM at the Monadnock Center for History and Culture, 19 Grove Street next to the Peterborough Town Hall.

The Monadnock Folklore Society presents the Peterborough, NH First Saturday Contra Dance on January 3rd, featuring Steve Zakon-Anderson calling with “The Agnostic Fiddle Insurgency.”

Dance caller Steve Zakon-Anderson has been leading contra dances for over 25 years. He has performed at dance camps and festivals from Alaska to Florida. Steve’s clear teaching, precise calling and sense of humor have made him a favorite of dancers of all ages and abilities.

The Agnostic Fiddle Insurgency is a triple fiddle contra dance band consisting of Julie Metcalf, Cedar Stanistreet, and Edward Wallace on fiddles with Max Newman on guitar and mandolin. They are known for their high drive and lush harmonies for contra dances.

The dancing begins at 8:00 PM, with an optional introductory workshop beforehand. Admission is $10 or $7 for students and seniors.

The dance takes place in the historic Town House in Peterborough, NH at 1 Grove Street. For more information call 603.762.0235 or visit www.monadnockfolk.org. The Monadnock Folklore Society has presented contra dances and concerts of traditional music since 1982.

☼ ☼ ☼ Christmas Night Dance | Nelson Town Hall

It’s the 17th annual Christmas Night dance at the Nelson Town Hall. Festivities begin at 8:00 pm. We’ll stop dancing early because there will be a dessert potluck afterwards so bring treats. Admission is free — the Monadnock Folklore Society sponsors this dance as a gift to the community.

Once upon a time, in the town of Nelson, a wonderful tradition was born.

Some years ago or so, the callers and dancers at a Monday Nite Contra Dance
realized that Christmas was going to fall on a Monday that year. Imagine
the dilemma! Nelson has always held a public contra dance on Monday nights.
If they were to skip Christmas, then the world record would end. Not
wishing to jeopardize the record, and wishing to see good friends and family
again, the tradition began!

It’s a Christmas night dance. It starts at the usual 8pm time. This year
Gordon Peery will be on piano and we’ll shed a tear for Bob McQuillen. Amy Cann will be on fiddle and if we’re lucky, Avi Fagen will bring his vibraphone. It’s always a good night!

One year we had three feet of snow. But Bob McQuillen drove up for the
dance, Don Primrose showed up to call and there was a family visiting from
New York that wanted to dance on Christmas Day. We couldn’t get into the
hall because of the snow, so we moved the furniture from our living room and
Bob played his accordion. That night was my favorite of all the Christmas
dances.”

This story about one of Nelson’s traditions was submitted by Val Van Meier.