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The Contradancer's Guide to French Dancing: From Bal to Balfolk (with Leslie Barr)
Thursday, Sep. 23, 2021,  8:00 PM Eastern

Mt. Airy Contra Dance Speaker Series

Every few months, come to hear a noteworthy speaker present and discuss the history and social context for contra dancing and related forms of dance and music.

Please join us for the third installment in our online speaker series!

Circle dances and branles from what feels like the dawn of time; dances in lines and squares that trickled down to French villages from the contredanses and quadrilles of the Parisian court; 19th century couple dances with the radical idea that you can dance face to face with your partner... these are all part of the fabulous dance scene called balfolk, born in France but now found all over Europe (and growing in North America.) Similar to the evolution of contra dancing in New England, these rural traditions of music and dance in France, once almost forgotten, were revived in the 1970s. Over the decades, they have since been reinterpreted and remixed into something new, whether inspired by those traditions, or fully in the camp of neo-trad. With music, images and video, Leslie Barr will introduce you to the amazing music and dance of France, and tell the story of the evolution from bal to balfolk.

Leslie Barr discovered French traditional music in the 1980s and has been traveling to France to play and dance ever since. A fiddler, her particular love is the music of the violoneux of Central France - bourreés, scottishes, mazurkas, and valses. She has attended countless bals, learning the dances of France's many regions, and, with her academic background in ethnomusicology, has explored both the roots and the revival of what the French call musique populaire. She has given workshops in French traditional dance music and played for balfolk dances throughout the Northeast.

To attend, please look for the email invitation from the Mt. Airy listserv. If you are not on the list for our dances, social events and speaker series you can email us at Depending on interest, we will likely live stream the talk to Facebook as well, so you don't need Zoom (or even a Facebook account) to join.

For up-to-date information, see our website.

Time Zone Information

Thursday, September 23, 2021, 5:00 PM Pacific time
Thursday, September 23, 2021, 6:00 PM Mountain time
Thursday, September 23, 2021, 7:00 PM Central time
Thursday, September 23, 2021, 8:00 PM Eastern time
Friday, September 24, 2021, 1:00 AM United Kingdom time

Location ONLINE
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