"New Leaders" Takes Off!
We have nearly reached our $250,000 goal for the New
Leaders, Good Leaders fund. Along the
way, we had many great conversations -- about leadership, education, mentorship
and community, among other absorbing topics.
Who knew fundraising could be so much fun?!
Campers at our 2009 summer camps raised over $28,000 for New
Leaders. As part of the fundraising
wrap-up, a different CDSS staff member made a one-day visit each week to talk
about New Leaders and listen to campers' ideas. Sales and
Services Manager Jeff Martell created a special fundraising song which he performed at Folk Music Week; we'll post a video of it later.
On the Outreach side, it has been an amazing experience to
receive, and be able to fund, grant proposals for such a variety of creative
and worthwhile projects, including numerous musicians and callers workshops, events
on college campuses, band mentorship, travel assistance for young ritual
dancers, and a young people's Sacred Harp convention.
This Fall, New Leaders funds are going to an
organizers/callers conference in Virginia and a mentorship series for the BIDA series in Boston. On the horizon: a Southeast Leadership
Conference in North Carolina, the weekend of October 1, 2010.
The next deadline for grant applications is January 1. Keep those great ideas coming!
E-Blast, Website & New News Debut
our first "e-blast," an informal and occasional way for us to alert you
to upcoming deadlines, opportunities and information between issues of
the newsletter. If you prefer not to receive email from us, you may opt
is part of our new website program which debuted in August. Many thanks
for your feedback on the site, by the way; we enjoy reading your
letters and suggestions. And thanks as well for your comments on the new quarterly
newsletter; the Fall issue is starting to reach our members' mailboxes
with articles on Dance in the Classroom, Organizing a "Welcome"
Workshop, How to Get Rich and Famous as a Traditional Musician, Bob
McQuillen, and more. (If you're not a member, you can read a selection
of articles from the issue.)
ECD Oral History Project
We have started an exciting new initiative -- the English
Country Dance Oral History Project. Our focus is to document the history and
activities of, and the seminal people associated with, the many communities
across the continent where English country dancing has flourished. I am
interested in the meaning people attach to this activity on which they have
chosen to spend their valuable time and energy.
This past summer, I introduced the project at English Week
at Pinewoods Camp, and had the immeasurable opportunity to speak with, and
record the memories of, some of the dancers there. This experience made it all
the more clear that this is important information to preserve.
The stories will be transcribed and eventually reside in the
CDSS Archives at the New Hampshire Collection of Traditional Music and Dance of
the University of New Hampshire Library in Durham, NH. If you are interested in adding the voices of your local dancers to the project you can start with the introduction, sample questions, intake and permission forms. Please contact me or 413-268-7426 x 106 if you want more information.
Al Blank & Pat MacPherson; photo by Nancy Blank
We are very happy to announce that we've hired a new Youth Projects Intern for 2009-2010 -- Alaska native Max Newman. Max has been living on the East coast since graduating from
Harvard, where he organized the campus contra dance. An excellent
music teacher, he has also worked as a marketing intern at Smithsonian
Folkways, and as an election observer and field organizer in Fairbanks,
Max's projects this year will include maintaining the youth desk on the
CDSS website, writing starter kits, and acting as liaison for youth to
the CDSS Board and
staff. A new initiative we're talking about with Max is to identify and
with young people across the continent who have the skills, enthusiasm
knowledge needed to create an outreach network to other young people
You'll hear more from Max directly in upcoming newsletters
and on the web. We invite you to contact him with questions, concerns, and for
discussion at firstname.lastname@example.org or 413-268-7426 x 114.
Photo by Pat MacPherson