Archive Class Descriptions
Class Descriptions - Harmony of Song & Dance 2016
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The morning chorale brings the entire camp together to start the day with a 75 minute singing session where our diverse singing staff take turns leading harmony songs both by ear and from written music. The material will range from easy and fun to more challenging (and still fun!) A big sing at the end of the week will be a review of the highlights of this session. The repertoire may include American country harmony, sea songs, shape note and gospel, contemporary a cappella, and new arrangements of traditional songs from the U.S., the U.K., Canada, and beyond.
Music by: Keith Murphy, Becky Tracy: What could be better than dancing to great music in a beautiful open air pavilion? This workshop features a fine selection of contras and squares with an emphasis on good connection and skillful style.
Music by: Karen Axelrod, Shira Kammen: Join us each morning for English Country Dancing, with a full palate of musical colors and dance styles. We’ll look at ways to make you a better dancer, whatever your level. And with Karen at the keyboard, Shira on the fiddle and a bit of Susan’s clarinet (once the calling is done), you’ll be in for quite the musical treat!
Music by: Rachel Bell, Mary Alice Amidon: We will do a succession of dances that teach the fundamentals of contra and English country dancing so that you can enjoy more deeply the evening dances and dancing in your community. The focus is always on musicality, flow, and good choreography. This is a great class both for beginning dancers, and for experienced dancers interested in a feast of tips, techniques and repertoire for teaching dance.
Think Kingston Trio, Peter Paul & Mary, Watersons, etc. for a mix of songs people are likely to know, and even know the verses of as well as the chorus. Bring a guitar. Nothing is too corny. It's 'Rise Up Singing' WITHOUT THE BOOKS.
Pinewoods, we know you can dance and sing! In this session, we'll create rhythms and sing at the same time. We'll try it a capella, with hands and feet, and with percussion instruments. In particular, we'll explore the clave rhythm as it shows up in music from Ghana, Cuba, and New Orleans.
Part band class, part pub sing, part dance class. We'll sing through songs in waltz time and work on quick band arrangements: "We'll start this one by playing the last 8 bars of the chorus; play the break after the third verse; double chorus at the end" If that doesn't make sense, it will at the end of the week. Might include a little waltz step tutorial, too. The songs we work on will be the basis for an all camp singing-dancing-waltz party at the end of the week. For singers and instrumentalists.
Peter & Mary Alice will explore a wide range of interpretations, harmonisations and arrangements of great American folk songs, hymns and ballads from the oral tradition, from the Sacred Harp, and from songwriters steeped in the oral tradition (Pete Seeger, Jean Ritchie, Si Kahn). The group will sing the same songs both in their ‘original’ state and in arrangements that take the songs somewhere else while still maintaining their essential integrity.
Music by: John Roberts: We'll work on one, and maybe two newer eight person stick dances based on the border tradition. No previous experience is necessary.
Come and sing your favorite French Canadian songs as well as learn a few new ones. Pascal will guide you through the most common forms of call and answer songs that we usually hear at a Quebecois veillée. Focus will be given to delivering good unison réponses to songs you've never heard before. We will also work on pronunciation, style and some harmonies that have been incorporated in the style by modern bands.
Learn to sing in close harmony. We’ll work on some great country songs with a goal of singing them the way they are meant to be sung -- in small groups, knee-to-knee (one of the world’s great pleasures!). We’ll work on making up harmonies, country vocal stylings and some fundamental music theory as well as just having fun singing close harmonies. This class is recommended for singers who have some experience holding their own parts.
Explore how your unique voice combines with others and fine-tune that exciting alchemy in a supportive setting. We’ll sing in duos, trios and quartets, using very simple repertoire. We’ll experiment with leading and following, energy, tone, rhythm, and phrasing, using different prompts each day. Be ready for deep listening and courageous sharing with the group!
Sea Songs have enjoyed a growing popularity over the last few years, with the Rogue’s Gallery CDs, inspired by “Pirates of the Caribbean,” and even a sea shanty edition of the “Assassin’s Creed” video game. Sea Chanteys make for great chorus singing, and are an ideal place to try out extemporaneous harmony. We’ll mix them up with other songs of the sea, old and new, for a grand mélange.
Emily & Peter are both gifted choral arrangers deeply steeped in traditional song. We will harmonize spontaneously by ear, collaborate on harmonizations that we work out and teach by ear, and work as a group on creating composed and written harmonizations with a range of songs from American (including African American) singing traditions.
Music by: Shira Kammen: If you've ever watched a rapper set and wondered what is going on in there, then this class is for you. Everyone is welcome, even if you've never seen, let alone held a rapper sword before. You'll learn how to perform these seemingly impossible interweavings and how to unravel them at the end. Amaze your friends as you effortlessly hold up the lock. Amaze yourself.
Music by: Jesse Milnes: In this class, we’ll work on arrangements of singing squares with three part harmonies. Either come and be part of the chorale or step up to the mic as the lead singer. We’ll work on some classic singing squares and maybe even write one of our own! We will try to pull some of these arrangements together to do at one of the evening dances during the week.
Learn all kinds of square Quebecois repertoire including Brandys (3/4), Galops, Jigs, Marches and straight reels with even or odd number of parts. Repertoire will be chosen according to participants interests from modern and traditional sources. Bowing and ornamentation will also be discussed and thought as well as how to incorporate the music in your own personal style.
If there's one thing that defines folk songs above all others, it's that they're meant for sharing. So come and spend an hour each day with songs that go well with social gatherings and celebrations, and are often an important part of them: songs that are sung for the sheer enjoyment of the music and the company.
English Country dance music can use skills and stylings from a variety of musical backgrounds—contra, classical, early music, jazz, choral part singing, and more. In this course we’ll explore the tools to transform these ideas and techniques into music that enhances English dancing. We'll use exercises in musicianship, harmonizing, ornamenting or changing melodies, playing rhythmic backup, determining how to know when to do what, as well as practice ensemble skills and deep listening. Required is basic proficiency on your instrument and a sense of musical adventure!
This class will focus on learning traditional songs from the Appalachian region and other southern American styles. Especially, we will listen to and learn from the singing of traditional women singers (Ola Belle Reed, Hazel Dickens, Maggie Hammons, Texas Gladden, Almeda Riddle, Addie Graham and more). The goal of this class will be learning repertoire and delving into the singing styles of these powerful women musicians. It is open to folks of all skill levels who are interested in the subject.
Gentle stretches, breath and mindfulness exercises, and simple vocalization practice combine in this quiet, internal, end-of-the-day group session. Our aim is to relax, listen, and tune in to the ways that body and mind collaborate on our experience of singing and being.
Music by: Becky Tracy, Karen Axelrod: Come get your groove on at our dance party, featuring the calling of the callers course participants. These callers will energize the dance floor and get folks moving to the beat of our fabulous musicians.
Some space in the day for spontaneous events - perhaps a staff member is motivated to offer a 'one-off'. Campers are also welcome to organize an event during this time.
In Quebec, people often enjoy a 'Cinq a Sept' before dinner. This is a French/ French Canadian themed daily party. This will be a very fun but informal party to which all are invited. A French dance might happen, perhaps a song. Enjoy playing tunes with Pascal, one of the great fiddlers from Quebec. BYOB. Also bring your own joie de vivre.
Class Descriptions - American Dance & Music Week at Pinewoods 2016
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Start your day with a set of gentle Tai Chi stretches and warmups to relax the body and calm the mind. You'll have more energy for a full day of dancing and music, and more appetite for breakfast!
Music by: Julie Metcalf, Sam Bartlett, Ann Percival: Wake up gently with smooth, fun dances and wonderful music. We will spend some time on perfecting our skill at being the best dance partner around.
This proven, highly participatory class gives you skills to exponentially raise your understanding of melody, rhythm and phrasing. In a totally safe and encouraging setting, you'll get to play with the instructors and other students in duos and small ensembles - for many players a rare treat. We'll all critique together, and you will be amazed at the improvements that occur in your musicianship in just a few minutes. Students frequently say this class has changed their musical lives for the better. Don't miss it if you can make it. Intermediate and above, all instruments welcome.
The Sacred Harp, continuously in print since 1844, is the backbone of one of this country's oldest, most vital, and soul-stirring musical traditions. You have to sing it to believe it! Join shape note singing teacher Sasha Hsuczyk for an opportunity to learn the tools for how to sing out of the Sacred Harp. Don't be intimidated by the shape note system; it was designed to make sight-singing easier - and once you understand it, you will find this to be true! Even if you cannot read music at all, you can sing this music. We will cover the fundamentals of how to sing using the shape note system, and then as the week progresses we will build on that foundation with information about the history of the Sacred Harp through stories and old field recordings. Each day will include opportunities to explore the book together and sing lots of songs.
Music by: Ethan Hazzard-Watkins, David Cantieni, Ann Percival: Waltzing is not only about fancy moves and twirls, but first and foremost, about connecting with the music and with your partner. We will focus on the skills and nuances of aware, timely leading and following. What we do will apply to other couple dances as well, and to life in general!
Music by: Julie Metcalf, Bruce Rosen: This hands-on workshop will focus on building our square dance calling skills. We'll explore and practice a variety of skills including regional calling styles, patter calling, phrasing, vocal presentation, teaching, working with musicians, collecting, and more.
Learn some interesting repertoire as you discover how the fiddle fits into the main components of southern traditional music: melody, drone, rhythm and backup. In this class we'll try some techniques, tunings and bowing styles from archaic mountain musical cultures through blues to some of the more modern fiddling from the Arthur Smith era and bluegrass. The class will give you historical and aural context within which to further develop as a fiddler. It's structured so that players of varying levels, learning styles and learning speeds will have plenty to work on. Intermediate students should know how to tune the fiddle and play a number of tunes comfortably. Students are encouraged to bring recording devices and be prepared to learn by ear.
Music by: Paul Brown, Terri McMurray, Sam Bartlett, Bruce Rosen: During these daily sessions we'll hone our dancing skills and have a ton of fun dancing traditional square dances from a variety of places and a variety of time periods.
For instrumentalists, singers, and curious listeners; a class to sharpen the musical ears. We'll practice aural detective work: the most basic skill behind harmonizing, improvising, composing, and finding chord progressions. The class will be taught entirely by ear, though singing, playing, and listening to recordings. It will incorporate an intuitive, applicable approach to basic music theory. We will practice hearing and reproducing intervals, chords, bass lines, and rhythmic nuances. We'll investigate popular, folk, and jazz idioms - whatever intrigues us, and we'll dabble in the art of stealing musical ideas for our own compositions and improvisations.
A relaxed gathering to draw different scenes from Pinewoods Camp. You are welcome to bring your own supplies or use basic drawing materials that I will provide.
Music by: Anna Patton, Ethan Hazzard-Watkins, Karen Axelrod: We'll explore the wide range of wonderful English country dances from the traditional barn dance to the treasured Playford repertoire and the latest gems from both sides of the pond. With glorious music, we'll have fun and dance beautifully.
We will learn tunes traditionally played in harmony by fiddles and accompanied by guitars, but all instruments are most welcome. Those who participate should be comfortable on their instrument and able to learn tunes by ear. We'll learn two "family" of tunes, the Spanish Colonial dance music of Northern New Mexico and Southern Colorado, featuring waltzes, polkas, schottisches, and more, and the fiddle music of the Gu-achi Fiddle Band of the Tohono O'odham tribe from Arizona. These beautiful, catchy, and quirky tunes will haunt you forever!
Swing, Pop, Trad, Blues, Mo-Town and Gospel with some dance moves thrown in. We will learn some harmonies by ear. The ability to read music is not a requirement for this class. Come ready to have fun with your voice! No experience necessary.
Music by: Ethan Hazzard-Watkins, Anna Patton, Bruce Rosen: A selection of new and old contra dances that survey different ways a contra dance can be challenging.
Music by: Sasha Hsuczyk: Sean-nós ("old style") Irish dance is improvised, rhythmic, and expressive step dancing, closely tied to traditional music. The footwork is low to the ground. We will learn basic steps and also improvise and create - the focus is on making great rhythm. This class is open to dancers of all backgrounds: we will explore movement and rhythm basics, and more experienced dancers will develop fluidity and fine-tune their ear. Bring a pair of flat hard-soled shoes.
Come learn some new tunes and wail away on old favorites, while working on some stylistic points of old-time and string band music.
Class Descriptions - English Week at Pinewoods 2016
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Music by: Rebecca King, Daniel Beerbohm, Barbara Greenberg: How has English Country Dance changed over the last 40 or so years to arrive at its current state? We’ll look at some old favorites, particularly dances that are the legacy of the great New York City callers like May Gadd, Genny Shimer, and Christine Helwig. The current dance scene will take on new meaning as we explore the old and the new.
Music by: Aaron Marcus, Ethan Hazzard-Watkins: How do we express our unique selves to best effect in the dance? Regardless of your dancing level, how do you find ways to improve your own dancing experience? Come explore options! The dance does not exist unless we dance it: with this class’s refinements, our individual offerings reveal the beauty of each dance.
Music by: Rob Rohr: We will take a detailed look at probably the most complex and influential dance to come from the traditional repertoire, the dance made famous by the Royal Earsdon Sword Dancers. One of the lesser performed dances, we will be going through the original notations with the class to recreate a selection of some of the figures from the performance. For the more advanced participants, there will be an opportunity to explore how these figures were developed into the Swearsdell dance, as notated in Phil Heaton's book on Rapper Sword Dancing. Participants should have danced rapper regularly before and have a strong understanding of the basic structures of a rapper dance. For example, they must be able to adequately understand how to tie and untie a lock from any position, have a grasp of basic terminology (coach and horses, walk round, open ring, curly, etc.) and should be relatively agile with a basic ability in stepping.
Music by: Jonathan Jensen, Barbara Greenberg: Come one and all! Callers and dancers are all welcome to play their part in this network of mutual support for dance leaders of *all* levels of experience, including anyone wishing to step up to the mic for the first time. Our focus will be on striving for a satisfying experience for all -- success for the caller, comfort for the musicians, joy for the dancers, and pride among assembled leaders at each other's accomplishments and growth. This is decidedly not a forum for trying out challenging or new-to-you-and-us repertoire: we will instead work towards the best possible presentation of dances we know well. Callers will receive structured feedback in a supportive environment.
Music by: Gus Voorhees: This class will use a set of activities to explore three 'guiding principles' for Morris dancing. First, that it's an inherently athletic activity and we need to understand how our bodies move to jump higher, move more smoothly, and most importantly avoid injury. Second, that it's a team dance so moving with our partner, corner, or lines is key to a polished aesthetic. Last, that it's a performance and what matters most is what the audience sees and how we connect with them. The class is open to dancers of all ages and experiences from absolute beginners to those with a lifetime of Morris experience.
Music by: Doug Creighton: The hornpipe steps of Bert Bowden are performed in a very different style to the more well-known Lancashire styles of Sam Sherry and Pat Tracey. Bert Bowden was a Liverpudlian dancer who learnt from his father, who used to dance in the pubs of Liverpool. Bert's style was also influenced by music hall performers, such as Dan Leno.
Come with your instruments to play beautiful English Country Dance tunes. We will learn a little music theory to create improvised harmonies and solos with ample time to try them out. Loosen up your playing in a supportive atmosphere, and work at your own level. All are welcome.
Music by: Jonathan Jensen, Daniel Beerbohm: Over the course of the week we'll work on a select few of the most challenging dances in the English Country Dance repertoire, those that reward the hard work of truly learning them, with an eye to performance-level mastery. An aspiration towards that level of mastery and achievement, as well as respect for and commitment to such aspirations among one's set-mates, is an absolute prerequisite.
Music by: Rebecca King, Ethan Hazzard-Watkins: Dances to bring a smile to your face and a lilt to your step. Revel in the glorious variety of English country dance from centuries ago to right now. Dances will be accessible to all, with no lack of fascination and fun for even the most experienced dancers.
All the Scottish songs you wanted to sing, but were afraid to try, or couldn't make sense of. We all get to sing a wide variety of songs together; traditional and recent, dramatic and humorous, sentimental and scathing. Everyone gets a copy of the words, and plenty of social, historical and linguistic background will be provided. If you have a favourite, bring it along, and we'll all have a go at it.
Music by: Aaron Marcus, Daniel Beerbohm, Ethan Hazzard-Watkins: English dancers and ritual dancers make the *best* contra dancers! The poise, the timing, the flow! Come enjoy contras picked to delight those who thrill to a fine figure and embrace community interaction.
Music by: Stefan Read: Arguably the northernmost recording of a longsword dance in England is from the village of Penshaw in County Durham, seen in a wood engraving from the 18th century. It has been argued that this tradition was the basis of what later developed into rapper. Tom will teach a recreated version of this four man longsword dance, as researched by Julian Whybra in 2007. The four person dance is a simple set of figures which would have been performed locally to Penshaw and is a great beginner dance. For those with a more experienced interest in Longsword dancing, there will be an opportunity to develop the ideas in the Penshaw dance into a more complex four dancer performance.
Music by: Doug Creighton: This workshop will provide an introduction to many of the basic steps that form the building blocks for much of the English clog repertoire. Using the 'Ossie Jig' steps written by the Oswaldtwistle Cloggers from Lancashire, we will learn each of the steps and then look at choreographing the dance for a group performance.
Music by: Doug Creighton: North West morris demonstrates the regimented precision of a group performing individually simple movements to create an impressive display as a team. In the 40th year of the Horwich Prize Medal Morris Men, Tom (their current Foreman) will be teaching a selection of simple yet intricate dances from Lancashire. North West morris is historically easy to pick up the basics, yet tricky to perfect, and always great fun!
Music by: Jonathan Jensen, Aaron Marcus: These are the dances you know you want to know: the gems of our repertoire. Attend class, and you’ll be ready for the “for those who know” dances at the start of each evening. Beginners will learn the dance patterns and more experienced dancers will work on some of the subtle refinements that make these dances so beloved.
How do we know what we love and value about English Country Dance? How, as the emerging callers and leaders of The Next Generation, do we share that with other dancers in order to grow our communities? Workshop participants will derive answers to these questions from dancing and calling, as well as discussion. Over the course of the week we will create a set of shared goals for our home communities, a strategy for meeting those goals together, and a network for sharing our evolving ideas and discoveries about the shape of ECD's future.
Here's a chance to share all your favourite songs, and maybe learn a few others. Join us on the Camphouse porch every afternoon for an open sing. Alistair Brown will moderate the proceedings with creativity and humour and set a good example. There will be a daily theme - it will be your job to provide a song or two to suit the topic, however tenuous the connection.
Class Descriptions - Early Music Week at Pinewoods 2016
Please see our Self-Rating Guide for definitions of levels
Instrumental and vocal consorts are assigned by level, B (Beginner) to A (Advanced): recorder, viol, voice, string, harp, and the following specialized ensembles:
Using Renaissance recorders that will be provided (suggested option for Accademia participants).
Using a set of Renaissance viols by Ray Nurse (suggested option for Accademia participants).
Focus on Italian and English madrigal, French chanson and German Lied.
We will explore dances and tunes of the 17th century (Biber, Buonamente, and John Playford)
Advanced Baroque Master Class (Recorders, Flutes, Singers, Cellos, Gambas and Keyboard Players) – Héloïse Degrugillier, Frances Fitch
Participants will be asked to bring two solo pieces they know well in order to receive coaching in a master class setting.
English Country Dance classes, by level
This will be offered the first couple of days to learn basic steps. The class will then join the English Country Dance Class for All.
Music by: Frances Fitch, Brandi Berry: Connecting with the Music and with your Community. We'll dance favorites from the canon, recent classics, joyous romps, elegant gems, and stately pavanes, while learning good dancing practices that benefit everyone. All are welcome, from new dancers to seasoned dancers!
Music by: Cynthia Shaw, Emily O'Brien: For dancers thoroughly comfortable with English country dance figures. Bring your brain, as we'll learn some of the more complicated dances in the repertoire, both old and new (and we may do some dances without walk-throughs). And bring your dancing body, as we'll also spend time on how we dance - the style points that increase your enjoyment and that of your fellow dancers.
Collegium "Heavenly and Earthly Delights" (Voices, recorders, flutes, strings, I-A) – Larry Zukof, Alexa Raine-Wright
From the sublime to the earthy, we will explore gorgeous sacred and secular settings of texts of love and loss. Works will include settings by Arcadelt, Marenzio, Lassus, Byrd and Victoria of biblical and poetic texts of Petrarch and Guarini, There will be some break-out sessions for the singers and for more advanced instrumentalists.
These finely crafted and timeless dances originating in the 12th and 13th centuries, evoke a full range of scenarios from an intimate dance of veils to an earthy and exquisite celebration of movement. They are made up of verses and refrains that make it easy to play solos, improvise, or just play together with everyone in the group on the refrains. Bring percussion and any instrument that you think might like to "wail on."
This ensemble will focus on various arrangements of dance movements from the High Baroque including works by Telemann and from the Bach Orchestral Suites.
Terpsichore: Baroque Dance and Dance Music (Musicians & dancers; All) – Barbara Finney, Francie Fitch
We will explore the various steps and other movements that are the building blocks of Baroque dance. These movements relate to music in different ways and we'll look at different types including bourées, sarabandes, gigues, menuets and gavottes. The steps will be put together into sequences and we will work on a complete choreography from the period. All levels of dance ability are welcome. Participants who wish to may also bring their instruments and do a little playing with the band.
Adventures in the Pinewoods Instrumentarium – (for absolute Beginners)
-- Hark the Lark: An Introduction to the Baroque Flute (Instruments provided for the week, B) – Emily O'Brien
Have you always wanted to try the Baroque flute? With an easeir embouchure than the Renaissance flute, this could be your entry into expanding your musical horizons. By the week's end we will be playing beautiful and lively melodies, duets, and maybe even trios.
-- Strike the Viol: An Introduction to the Viola da Gamba (Instruments provided for the week, B) – Lisa Terry
Whether you have a background playing a bowed string instrument or none at all, this is the perfect time to experience the pleasurable sound of vibrating strings!
-- Follow the Piper: An Introduction to the Renaissance Bagpipe (Instruments provided for the week, B) – Joan Kimball
Strains of bagpipes will waft once again through the pines of camp this August. Come all ye hearty players, strong of lip and lung, and learn the secrets of this delightful instrument. Can you pat your stomach and rub your head at the same time? Then this class is made for you! Pipe sets will be available for loan throughout the week (if you already have a pipe, contact the instructor in advance).
Offered second afternoon period (see below).
Accademia: Instruments and Voices (Pre-registration) – Sarah Mead, Michael Barrett
Explore the world of late 16th-century Europe, where music, poetry, and drama combined to create the fertile ground that would give rise to opera. A matched set of viols (based on Italian instruments of the 1580's) along with a set of Renaissance recorders will form the core of an ensemble which will also welcome lute, keyboard, cornetto, dulcian, violins, and a small ensemble of skilled singers. Singers must be strong sight-readers experienced with singing one-on-a-part. Instrumentalists should be advanced ensemble players comfortable on multiple instruments and clefs.
An intensive course (two afternoon periods) designed to meet the needs of English Country Dance teachers who feel constrained by their lack of formal musical training.
We will work with choral music with texts and themes from ancient Rome. Most Latin vocal music from the Renaissance has a sacred theme. Many composers, however, also set texts from Classical authors, including Virgil, Ovid, and Horace. Still other works of the time have contemporary texts, often celebrating a noble or special occasion, that make reference to the Classical world or Greco-Roman mythology. This year the chorus at Pinewoods will explore some of this fascinating and under-performed repertory, including several settings of Queen Dido's tragic final monologue from Virgil's Aeneid.
This ensemble will explore the gestures and rhythmic characteristics of French dance music. Repertoire to include Rebel's Les Caracteres de la Danse (a through-composed piece that morphs from one dance into another) and Lully's Concert donné au soupé du roy (suite of dances).
Renaissance Loud Bands: Musicque de Joye! Or in the words of David Bowie, "Let's Dance!" (Shawm, cornetto, sackbut and dulcian, I-HI, HI-A) – Joan Kimball, Bob Wiemken
What says "dactyl" better than a good French pavane or German Allemande? Or how about those "tribrachs" and "trochees" in the lively gaillard! Is that "choriamb" in the bassus of that tourdion a hemiola or not? And what about those lilting "iambs" in that basse dance? There's plenty of poetry in those wordless workhorses of the renaissance dance floor, if we know how to look for it. The loud band class will explore the motion of poetry and the poetry of motion through the dance repertoire of the late 15 and 16 centuries, with a glimpse back to the medieval rhythmic modes that underlay it all. Consorts will be divided by ability, depending on the number and variety of instrumentation.
Colorful and expressive vocal and instrumental works in 4-8 parts with emphasis on phrasing, articulation and rhetoric. The orchestra/consort will be divided by ability, depending on the number and sizes of instruments.
Have you always wanted to try out the harp? One of the world's oldest instruments, the harp, was ever useful on the middle ages. Medieval music is a wonderful repertoire with which to begin learning the harp. Learn the basic techniques of harp playing and enjoy the celestial harmonies they can produce.
Balkan and Beyond: Ethnic Folk Music for Playing and Dancing (Recorders, strings, and other instruments, including chordal instruments and percussion, I-A) – Jan Elliott, David Schonfeld
A class for those who like to dance as well as play, or enjoy playing for dancers. Both David and Jan are experienced dance leaders and dance musicians who love sharing music in a wide variety of scales, styles, and rhythms. The class will explore mainly traditional music and dance from the Balkans and Middle East. The focus will be on developing a familiarity with non-Western modes and meters. The associated dances are accessible and will be taught; participants are welcome to play and/or dance as they choose.
English Country Dancing Through the Ages (All) – English Dance Leaders Training Participants, Gene Murrow
Music by: Cynthia Shaw: This class will include a variety of English country dances for all levels of dancers. We'll focus on early repertoire (pre-twentieth century).
Accademia: Instruments only (Pre-registration) – Sarah Mead, Lisa Terry
Singers in Accademia will choose another class; loud winds may choose Loud Band.
Class Descriptions - Family Week at Pinewoods 2016
Playtime fun with songs, games, finger rhymes, movement!
Get ready to move, sing, and giggle! This class will be a fun mix of singing games, fun songs, and our favorite group games. If you have a favorite game, please consider sharing it in class. Throughout the week, we will pick a few special singing games to teach to everyone at the evening Community Dance.
Square dances, longways and circle dances will be just the ticket along with folktales and story songs. We will act out stories and make up some of our own. We will share singing games as well.
Music by: Becky Tracy: Peter Amidon will lead 10-12s in vigorous and spirited contra dancing, dignified and stately English dancing, and extraterrestrial choreography, all to the sublime fiddling of Becky Tracy. Each class starts with a folktale.
Music by: Catherine Miller, Susie Petrov: We'll explore the wide range of wonderful English country dances from the traditional barn dance to the treasured Playford repertoire and the latest gems from both sides of the pond. With glorious music, we'll have fun and dance beautifully.
Music by: Sam Bartlett: Basics first for a great foundation, then we'll clog our way through some traditional square and round dance figures. FUN! See some!
Music by: Claudio Buchwald, Bruce Rosen
Join us for some quiet art time in the midst of your music and dance filled day. Participants will work on a week-long creative project. An open table of supplies will be available for younger kids and their supervising grown-up, who would like to use this period for unstructured art-making.
Back by popular demand! For those who've always wanted to play an instrument but were afraid to ask, Mark and Sam will facilitate an open instrument menagerie with fiddles, banjos, ukes, whistles, the musical saw, accordion and guitar. We will get you in tune, give you some tips and let you experiment to your heart's delight. You might even learn a tune or two if you're not careful!
We will work on simple but fun tunes which we will aim to play in the evening dance program. We will work from written music as well as play by ear. All instruments welcome.
Music by: Claudio Buchwald: You asked for it, you got it! We will explore dances from a variety of English Ritual traditions including Costwold, Border, Molly dances (with 1 or 2 short sticks), hankies, garlands, and a Longsword set. Be ready to jump around to the best of your ability and try something…old and something new to you.
Peter & Mary Alice will lead a feast of harmony singing from written music and by ear: arrangements of songs from the oral tradition (English, American, African-American), arrangements of songs written by folks steeped in the oral tradition, four-part a cappella and accompanied, and some glorious unison.
Come enjoy picture books of stories and songs as Mary Alice reads and sings old favorites. We'll also enjoy some new books from her wonderful collection.
The 4 and 5 year-olds will explore singing dances, dancing songs, rhythm games, gaming rhythms, stories with songs, songs with stories, and other fun stuff.
The kids will create their own marble run on a flat piece of plywood using pre-shaped ramp materials that they will cut to size and glue in place. They will test the run as they add to it and troubleshoot as they go. I will suggest possible variations and, of course, each child will be able to make up their own. One such detail is making a field of nails that makes a musical sound as the marble goes through. All tools and materials will be provided, including small saws and a guide to facilitate making square cuts safely. Each child will make a unique and entertaining toy.
The 8-9 year olds will uphold the Family Week tradition and bear witness to mid-summer by learning a Longsword dance for performance later in the week. Our dance comes from the Ampleforth tradition as filtered through some 25 years of my own students' dancing in school.
Music by: Catherine Miller: Who knows how to have a good time? Bored 19th century ploughboys in midwinter, that's who! And boy, are we grateful to them coming up with this fun style of dance. Molly dancing is a living ritual dance tradition that started in England. Though the formations and figures are often similar to other Morris dance traditions, Molly dancing has a distinctively eccentric flare. Molly dancers are known for being creative, mischievous and rowdy, but generally harmless. Wardrobe items to bring: comfortable and supportive shoes, something that is solid black, and something that is wildly colorful or zany.
Music by: Keith Murphy, Becky Tracy, Mark Roberts: Explore a rich and varied collection of dances. At last count, 9000+ contra dance sequences, no shortage of dances! A wide range of square dances, from traditional visiting squares, singing squares, more recent additions to the square dance repertoire will be presented. Traditional and modern dances of both forms will be explored during the week. Drawing on four decades of dance experience will help to create diverse, intriguing, informative and fun sessions.
Play'em Slow and Play'em Often: Learn new tunes by ear. Walking tunes, barn dance tunes, waltzes, and more, in a stress-free and supportive environment. We'll move at a relaxed pace with plenty of repetition. Musicians at all skill levels/instrumentation are welcome.
Do you think you might want to be a caller? Have you written a dance you'd like us to try out? Come and hear what callers talk about, take a turn at the mic, ask questions, swap ideas and resources or just come and dance with us.
Everyone is welcome! Play your favorite tunes, and learn new ones, as well. Every day we'll have a theme, waltzes, reels, Old-Time, Irish and more.
Peter will lead and host this daily session of classic and epic folktales, humor, legends, a daily poem, songs that tell stories and stories that include songs.
Teens get their own special hour with master caller Tod Whittemore to explore fun and complex square dance figures, and learn the artful patter of calling. This playful class needs some terrific teen energy to give a contemporary spin to a traditional form.
Community Dance – Peter Amidon
The one time each day dedicated wholly to the entire village of Pinewoods dancing together: all kinds of dances for all kinds of people to great live music.
2016 Class Descriptions - Campers' Week at Pinewoods
Our youngest campers and their caregivers will "play" with music through fingerplays, songs, instruments, props, movement, and simple circle dances that support their language, fine and large motor development, and joyful experience with music.
In this class we'll experience a bounty of musical riches - singing, signing, dancing and learning about bees, beekeepers and honey!
We'll start the day with a potpourri of songs and dances - some familiar, some new - so new that we might make them up together at camp!
From foot stomping to smooth sailing, this class will feature a variety of contras, squares and some odd (and crazy) formations. We will have fun learning about music, movement and tradition, and create our own new dances as well.
Start your day with a wide palette of English country dances: dances that move, dances that flow, dances for flirting, dances for show. Some will be newer, some will be old, some will be tender, some will be bold! We'll make sure to have dances that please one and all.
All instruments and levels are welcome. We'll play some fine dance tunes, and develop skills in band technique, arrangement, rhythm, harmony and improvisation.
A daily opportunity to practice and discuss the art of calling for contra or for English. Both beginners and experienced callers welcome. We'll map out an agenda the first day based on participants' desires. Potential topics: calling basics (including constructive practice for the Campers' Night Dance), effective walk-throughs, designing a dance program, reading your crowd, understanding dance choreography, working with musicians.
Passing songs and dances from one generation to the next is what Camper's Week is all about. In teen class, we'll sing the songs and we'll dance the dances, we'll play the games, and we'll have a blast. While we're doing it, we'll learn how to carry our traditions from this generation to the next "as we pass them on."
Each day we will chant, sing, play (percussive) instruments, enjoy playparty games, simple line and circle dances, creative dramatizations, and musical stories, with the help of each child's input and imagination, active listening, and group fun.
Sing, dance, play games and tell shadow puppet stories with the amazing overhead projector project.
Hold onto your hats (and your swords, and your shoes, and your sticks), as we take a whirlwind tour through Anglo-American ritual dance. We'll start with Morris, and then see where the wind takes us. Longsword? Clogging? Rapper? Mumming? We'll also talk about the history of the dance forms, and the connections between different traditions.
A great selection of contras and squares with an emphasis on good connection and skillful style.
We will enjoy the harmonious possibilities of singing together, building harmonies from the bottom up - ostinatos, diads, triads, four-parts, and more - by ear, from written music, and from many genres.
Beginners and experienced dancers are welcome to learn this energetic sword dance from northern England. We'll learn new figures and sharpen up the ones we know. Bring comfy clothes and hard-soled shoes.
2016 Class Descriptions - Adult & Family Week at Timber Ridge
We’ll play with music, get our bodies moving, and explore the outdoors while weaving stories and songs revolving around the natural world.
We will weave together song, story, and an English Longsword dance. Rhythm, rhyme, and teamwork will be the main ingredients of this adventure. The emphasis will be on fun and creativity. Bring comfortable shoes that will stay on your feet - and bring an instrument if you play one.
Music by: Steve Hickman, John Devine: We'll dance our hearts out with reels, contras, circles, and squares. By the end of the week, we will create our own dance as a class and become expert spoon players too.
This session will focus on songs and dances from Bosnia and from the wide range of peoples who live there. We'll sing village songs as well as a few sevdalinkas -- lyrical love songs of the urban Muslim population (often called the Bosnian Blues). We'll also spend time talking, laying on the floor, thinking, resting and enjoy being alive together.
Music by: Alexander Mitchell, Chris Ousley: It's time to dance! Roll outta bed and come as you are, whether you are brand new to contras and squares or a seasoned veteran, Janine will get you up and dancing with style, grace, and pizzazz in no time flat. We will cover the basics and MUCH more!
Music by: Audrey Knuth, Dave Wiesler, Ralph Gordon: Designed for dancers comfortable with basic ECD figures and styling. Expect material that spans a wide range of ECD repertoire, including both familiar and unfamiliar dances, and moments where you will appreciate that cup of coffee you had at breakfast….
Music by: Aaron Olwell
Every day we will spend time learning Robin's and DeLaura's favorite songs, games, stories, and stunts to amaze our friends. We will wrap up each day making toys and instruments to take home at week's end.
Music by: John Devine and American Dance Musicians Course Attendees: Shake a leg, create some interesting rhythms, and sing some crazy songs. This class will take folk song and dance in all kinds of fun directions.
Music by: Steve Hickman: Swords! Rhythmic dancing! Team spirit! Team T Shirts! Rapper is an English team dance tradition from the late 1800s that our 10-12s find irresistible. Each dance is based on notes from traditional dances but during the course of the week changes and embellishments are made by the group to create an exciting dance of fast moving figures and team work that is fun for all.
Music by: Aaron Olwell, Larry Unger, Jess Eliot Myhre, Ralph Gordon Zingy contras, squares and more with an intriguing twist, for those with some experience and a sense of adventure.
Music by: Andy Davis: Northwest Clog Morris dances originated as processional (i.e. parade) dances in the north of England. Now they are usually performed as set dances, but still have a parade aspect. They are best done in dance clogs or other hard soled shoes to maximize the sounds of the stepping. The steps are simple, but the dances are about power and precision. In this class we will learn one or two dances that are either traditional or in a traditional style with an emphasis on dancing together and having fun.
Morning Gathering – DeLaura Padovan
We will explore the different ecosystems at camp, including the beautiful Cacapon River and the amazing fossil pit.
Bring your instrument and under the expert guidance of Jess and Chris we will meld our talents and enthusiasm into an amazing ensemble that will play for part of the 7 PM Community Dance each evening.
Music by: Alexander Mitchell, Colleen Reed, Dave Wiesler: Find out what all the buzz is about. Discover or rediscover the delicious variety of moods, music and movements that English country dancing can offer. All are welcome: dancers new to English country dance and experienced dancers alike.
Community Art this year will explore Shaker and Japanese basketry. Since August afternoons are hot, this will be a wet activity (think spritzers and misters!) perfect for a break from afternoon swims. Everyone will have a chance to join the weaving circles and conversations. We'll include a recycled materials (bring something special from home) project for those who can't make just one. Contributions towards materials will be appreciated.
Music by: Alexander Mitchell, John Devine: This delightful hour of dancing is hosted and called by participants in the Square Dance Callers Course. Come give them your support and you'll have a rollicking good time dancing to fabulous music. Parents: This is a great chance to dance with your age 9+ kids!
Music by: Steve Hickman: This is a good class for someone with little or no exposure to Appalachian clogging as well as those wanting to get more comfortable with the basics and expand their clogging repertoire. All the steps will be broken down as we work towards a routine to be done within the form of a square dance. This class will be a percussive dance party!
Music by: Aaron Olwell, Dave Wiesler
Music by: Jess Eliot Myhre, Chris Ousley, Ralph Gordon: In this five-day progressive class, we'll explore the ever-evolving world of Blues dancing. It will be a fun and accessible journey through the different styles of Blues music and movement that have helped define dance communities in this country for decades. Through play and conversation, we'll develop our own personal expression as well as gain experience in both leading and following the partnered dance. This class will also focus on inclusion, communication, leadership, and consent in dance community.
- Day 1: Intro to basic solo Blues movements & basic partnered connection
- Day 2: More solo movement & breakaway dance position
- Day 3: Intro to partnered Jukin' Blues
- Day 4: Intro to partnered Ballroomin' Blues (New Orleans Blues music) + Blues Waltz
- Day 5: Intro to solo & partnered Microblues (Chicago Blues music)
Ah the joyful fun of singing together in harmony! We'll sing songs from a handful of different countries including South Africa, the Republic of Georgia, and America in 2, 3 and 4 part harmony from sacred and secular traditions. All songs will be taught by ear and all levels of singers are welcome. Singers under the age of 10 are asked to bring an adult singing buddy with them. So come rest your feet and enjoy making a grand noise together!
2016 Class Descriptions - Family Week at Ogontz
Gentle playtime with Sarah will keep our youngest campers busy and happy!
Zara will sing and play with these lucky campers.
You never know what fun Fynn will have up her sleeves!
Music by: Dave Langford: Lily will teach this fun ritual dance and get the 8-9s ready for their role in the Mummers’s play all to some fabulous fiddling.
Steve will get the 10-12s ready to dance well at the Evening Dance. Jest about anything goes when Steve and Roger get together!
Music by: Rachel Bell, Karen Axelrod: When Brad was a teenager, his first dance teacher taught him the joy of dance, a lesson he'll never forget. He'll share that joy with you through a mixture from old favorites to new dances, and from easy dances to moderate challenges. Most of the dances will be in the modern historical ("Playford") style, with an occasional traditional dance for variety. The class is designed with something to learn for people with all levels of dance experience.
Music by: Peter Davis: Ellie will teach some great partnering skills and fun moves each morning to Peter’s fantastic tunes.
Rachel will bring her years as a professional music teacher to our littlest music makers.
Moving and grooving, dancing and singing and having a wonderful, playful time together.
Crafting, songs, and stories.
These lucky kids will spend an hour each day learning and practicing some new tricks, jest for the fun of it.
Music by: Karen Axelrod: Leaping and jumping and clashing and fun with Lily & Karen.
Music by: Dave Langford, Peter Davis: We will explore the varied shapes of American dancing. There will be many contra dances, as well as some squares, circles, triplets, etc.) and a sampling of choreography from many different eras. Most of all we will have fun together dancing to wonderful music played by Dave and Peter!
Music by: Leela Grace: We’ll learn some great foot percussion with Ellie & Leela. We’ll also team up and learn some really fun group routines. Sure to be a flat-footing good time for all!
Experience the untamed beauty of a shape note sing. We will go through the shapes and basic layout of a sing for newcomers and then sing your favorites from The Sacred Harp as well as more recent compositions written in the shape note tradition. Everyone is invited to call a song, stand up to lead, and sing to your heart’s content.
Bring your favorite storybooks from home and Lily will share some of her favorites too. This will be a quiet and relaxing hour for families with younger campers - not quite a nap, but a chance to refresh, recharge and snuggle your little ones while Lily reads.
Fibers, papers, paints and recycled fun. We’ll work on a variety of fun projects each day.
Rachel will get us ready to play for the Community Dance each night. All abilities and instruments welcome! Get ready - you have a gig Monday night!
Music by: Zara Bode, Peter Davis, Dave Langford, Stefan Amidon: Ogontz Hall will be swingin’ with this amazing band! This is a chance to dance to, or just kick back and enjoy, some great singing and fabulous music after lunch.
Ellie returns and brings her big sister Leela for some teen time fun!
A chance to harmonize on the Sutherland front porch. Zara and Stefan return with their popular offerings of beautiful harmonies and heartfelt solo moments.
The artistic director of Revels will lead us in the creation of another spectacular mummers play. Join the troupe and play your part!
Take a break from dancing or running after your kids and take part in the joy of harmony singing. Leela brings her popular class of learning traditional harmonies by ear back to Ogontz.
Roger will amaze and entertain us all each afternoon. What better way to end our busy day then laughing together at the Green Chairs.
Class Descriptions - The Revels Village
2016 Class Descriptions - Dance, Music & Spice at Cavell
Music by: Amy McFarland, Maria Terres: Start your day with a delightful blend of dances from both sides of the "pond." Explore the connections and the distinctions between contras, English country dances, and squares as you revel in the gorgeous music of Rare Privilege.
Music by: Rachel Bell, Daniel Beerbohm: This class is for current ECD callers of any experience level and those considering a career in ECD calling. Each day's class will focus on a different topic: writing an English dance program, working with musicians, repertoire, teaching vs. calling, etc. Class will include discussion, dancing, and opportunities to practice calling. Please note: this class is open to contra callers, and would-be contra callers, but will focus on the ECD genre and calling techniques.
Would you like to spend a few days with some interesting people, collaborating on a grand experience to share with the rest of Camp at the end of the week? Do you like word play, spectacle, and perhaps doing something unexpected? Then come to John’s Mummers’ class, where we will come up with a “play” in the tradition of old seasonal disguising rituals such as mumming, mummering, hoodening, guising, and trick-or-treating. No acting experience required. None.
Music by: Earl Gaddis: Laurie will teach a longsword dance from the village of Kirkby Malzeard in Yorkshire, England. This jaunty dance, which consists of a series of figures performed with a sprightly running step, will be made accessible to all levels of experience. This is an excellent opportunity to try a new type of dance or become reacquainted with an old favourite.
Music by: Noah VanNorstrand, Andrew VanNorstrand: Try some challenging, quirky contra dances while you're still sleepy. Uncontrollable laughter 100% guaranteed.
Music by: Karen Axelrod, Earl Gaddis, Daniel Beerbohm: This class will explore what it means to be an advanced dancer, focusing on skills and techniques including and beyond mastering complex choreographies. Selected topics: flow, end effects, changing roles, phrasing, recovery, and helping dancers in helpful ways. Knowledge of ECD figures and basic repertoire is expected.
This six-session class will include a variety of hand-quilting techniques: hand applique (regular and reverse), hand piecing, hand quilting, and more. We'll have lots of lovely fabric and supplies (you may also bring your own - 100% cotton only, please). We'll also have a sewing machine available and will give instructions on how to finish a small project, or start a bigger one.
Music by: Rachel Bell: This old-style dance is based on the Ottawa Valley style of Alex Mulligan who developed his particular version of these steps while working at logging camps in the early 20th century. This class is open to all campers and will move at a mutually agreeable pace. Come out and learn a step or two to try the next time you hear a classic jig, such as The Irish Washerwoman. Ontario stepping is best executed in hard-soled shoes.
Come spend a class doing some singing! The emphasis will be on learning some songs by ear, exploring how to find harmonies in an informal group situation, and perhaps sharing songs with each other. People who are intimidated by the thought of singing in public are especially welcome, as are those with more confidence who just want a chance to sing with other folks.
Join Dana, your MC, in a daily extravaganza of camper and staff talent, singing, stories and mischief. A great way to wind down before lunch and hang out with the whole camp!
Music by: Karen Axelrod, Earl Gaddis, Daniel Beerbohm: Some say the heyday of English country dancing is today. This hour, open to all, will examine different themes in modern ECD: our attraction to waltzes and other triple-time dances, borrowing of figures and music from other dance styles, reconstructions of older dances, and some of the latest compositions.
Music by: Noah VanNorstrand: If you’ve never done (or even seen) Morris dance, then in this class you will have a chance to try this exuberant, athletic dance style. If you’re an old hand, you’ll have a chance to try a style or some dances that are new to you. If you’re interested in dance creation, we can do some of that. The class will be tailored to the folks who are interested in exploring this old, English display dance form, but we will base it in the Hogtown dances of the Toronto Morris Men.
We will spend 2 days on each of these topics
Building a Band: What turns a jam session into a "band"? How do you get that "sound"? This workshop explores ways of playing together and ultimately putting style into your playing. Possible subjects are: rhythm, tempo, "swing", melodic and harmonic variations, and creating arrangements. We will try to tailor the workshop to the interests and experience level of the class.
Improvisation: Want to spice up your playing? We'll work on making expressive changes to tunes to express your own musical ideas. We'll start with simple improvisations based on chords and scales, and work our way into more advanced techniques involving harmonic substitutions and syncopation.
Tunewriting: Can one be taught to write a tune? This workshop provides the nuts and bolts of crafting a tune in the traditional style by focusing on how tunes are structured and how to work with musical ideas. Take a chance - connect with your muse!
This workshop, with award winning professional photographer Doug Plummer, meets for 2 hours each day. How do you find a photograph? What are the essential ingredients to sensing and seeing? How can you connect your emotions to your craft? How do you make a good photograph? Among the topics we'll discuss will be: why it's OK to suck and how failure is your greatest ally; what you know that your camera doesn't, and vice versa; how to use social media to share your work, and how to keep it from killing your creative growth; the rules of composition and how to evade their traps, and developing an editing and organizational workflow.
Outdoor activities (Technical tree climbing, Snorkeling, Horseback riding, Kayaking) – Camp Cavell staff
One of these will be available for two hours each day
Music by: Noah VanNorstrand, Andrew VanNorstrand: Take care of your fellow dancers with flourishes (really!), learn when to gender-swap, and increase your awareness on the dance floor. Improve your dance connection, creativity, and safety -- all at once!
Music by: Rachel Bell: Our class will learn a piece of choreography inspired by a piece of popular Bollywood music. We will begin each session with a substantial strength and flexibility warm-up. Get ready to move those hips and shoulders in new and unusual ways! All are welcome.
This class is open to everyone who wants to add a bit of fun and humor into their day. No experience necessary. And you don't even have to be funny. We will play a bunch of theatre games, and we will aim to quiet our internal self-critical voice. We will build on skills and games each day, so it is helpful if you can commit to the entire week. However, if that doesn't work, we can accommodate you if you just want to drop in one or two days.
How to Take Better Photos (cont.) – Doug Plummer
(See 2:00 period.)
Outdoor activities (cont.) – Camp Cavell staff
(See 2:00 period.)
Evening Dance, Music & Spice
Our evenings will feature the same mix of music, dance, and spice that the daytime offers! Nightly mini-concerts and dancing will be concurrent with "Spice" options that vary throughout the week, including a concert by Michigan's troubadour, Neil Woodward; cooking and baking with camp chef Herb Stokes; art workshops; table games and puzzles; evening tree climbing; and one evening of camper-led spice activities.