July 22 - 29, 2017



This Course is an intensive workshop designed for elementary school music teachers and community dance leaders. The workshop will focus generally on leading and teaching Anglo/American traditional dance and singing games with all ages in community and school settings. While participants learn a repertoire of dynamic, accessible dances for all ages, Peter Amidon will share a feast of dance teaching tips for keeping the dancing dynamic and the dancers successful and engaged. Discussions will include how to organize and call an evening community dance, and how to sustain a community dance series.

This program, held concurrently with Harmony of Song & Dance at Pinewoods, is designed and led by Peter Amidon. Peter is a founding member of New England Dancing Masters, publishing books, recordings and DVD collections of dances and singing games that are used by thousands of elementary school music teachers and community dance leaders. Peter and his wife and partner Mary Alice Amidon are in demand throughout the U.S. as clinicians leading Orff and Kodaly music teacher workshops on teaching dance to children, and have been headliners at several AOSA and OAKE national music teacher conferences. Peter has taught traditional dance to children and adults at CDSS summer camps for the last thirty-five years. He is a former elementary school music teacher.

The daily Harmony of Song & Dance morning program starts with a 75-minute All Camp Chorale, mostly a cappella SATB singing by all 140 campers of a wide range of songs led by the singing staff through the week. That is followed by Peter teaching an hour-long course for beginners on contra dance and English country dance. In the afternoon there will be a two-hour meeting with Peter that is the meat of the course, alternating between dancing and discussion on all aspects of teaching traditional dance and organizing/leading community dancing.


Participation is limited to 25 students, and before camp each student is asked to complete a preparatory assignment, which will be explained with acceptance. If the class is oversubscribed on March 13, a lottery will be held with some preference given to applicants supported by their local community. Strong indicators for CDSS are our Group Priority and Matching Scholarship processes, where a CDSS affiliate vouches for a participant and may offer some scholarship, asking CDSS to match that amount (www.cdss.org/support-services/insurance-group-services/priority-matching-scholarships). This is a statement by people who know the individual, that the person is deserving of assistance and would benefit the local community by attending camp. That can count highly in this and in our scholarship considerations.

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