Square Roots: The Southern Appalachian Square Dance with Phil Jamison

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The Handmade Music School: Online Sessions presents Square Roots: The Southern Appalachian Square Dance with Phil Jamison on Saturday, May 9, 2020 at 3:00pm. The workshop will be presented online via Crowdcast. Cost is $1 to $100 (suggested donation of $15).

The southern Appalachian square dance is a hybrid dance form that developed in the American South during the nineteenth century. Like the Appalachian musical traditions, these dances reflect the racial and ethnic diversity of the region. This presentation will examine the multicultural roots and historical development of the southern Appalachian square dance and identify the components of earlier European, African, and Native American dance forms that combined to make these dances uniquely American.

Phil Jamison is nationally known as a dance caller, old-time musician, flatfoot dancer, and scholar of traditional Appalachian dance. A 2017 inductee to the Blue Ridge Music Hall of Fame, he has called dances, performed, and taught at music festivals and dance events throughout the U.S. and overseas since the early 1970s, including forty years as a member of the Green Grass Cloggers. Over the last thirty years, Jamison has done extensive research in the area of Appalachian dance, and his book Hoedowns, Reels, and Frolics: Roots and Branches of Southern Appalachian Dance (University of Illinois Press, 2015) tells the story behind the square dances, step dances, reels, and other forms of dance practiced in southern Appalachia. He has given numerous presentations on Appalachian dance – from the Smithsonian Institution to Beijing, China – and he teaches Appalachian music and dance at Warren Wilson College, in Asheville, North Carolina, where for twenty-five years, he served as coordinator of the Old-Time Music and Dance Week at the Swannanoa Gathering. Find out more at philjamison.com.

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