“It will be, without a doubt, the most fun you’ve had in a long time.”

–Helen Whitty

Postponed to 2021 // Plymouth, MA

Dance, sing, play, repeat: party in the woods!

Unfortunately, American Dance & Music Week 2020 has been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic. If you are registered for this week, please log in to CDSS Commons to access the cancellation & refunds form. You can defer your registration to 2021, or claim a full refund. We also ask you to consider donating to CDSS in support of our camp staff and future camp programs.

Program Description

American Dance & Music Week at Pinewoods gathers folks from around the country to learn and have a mighty fine time together. Whether you’re just dipping a toe in the water, or you’re an experienced dancer and player, this week will provide all kinds of contra and contra-adjacent activities for you to explore. From Bal folk to Blues, from harmony singing to hot squares, this week will keep you moving and learning in a wonderful community.

Dancers at American Dance Week

Every afternoon we get together at Gathering to hear mini-concerts from staff and enjoy humorous presentations. Every evening, we come together in an open air pavilion to dance to glorious music. To keep up with the times, this year we’ll be using Larks/Robins for contras and Ladies/Gents for squares.

This year’s program will foster an especially lively old-time scene, with harmony singing, flatfooting, and daily old-time jams led by Beverly Smith, Annie Fain Barralon and Sam Bartlett. 

Annie Fain and Geraud Barralon are steeped in Bal Folk as well, and will offer an invigorating invigorating class of unique European-style couple and set dances start the day, with accompaniment by the great Jeremiah McLane. If you like accordions, this is the week for you! Mary Cay Brass will serenade you during waltzing, and I, myself, am sure to lead a parade or two. 

If you’re not yet convinced by the plentitude of accordions, maybe you would enjoy Good Neighbor contras with Ben Sachs-Hamilton, English with Scott Higgs or Waltz with Clayton Jennings. And if you want to really get playful with your dancing, try Blues.

Campers jamming at the Raccoon Bar

This is a week for singers, too. Sing your heart out in Mary Cay’s World Harmony class. Find the juiciest harmony in Katie Martucci’s swing class. (If you really dig that old swing stuff, check out Katie’s ukulele class too). At the end of the afternoon, come sing with Julia Friend and get tips and coaching towards your possible Pub Night debut.

One of the best things about camp is that you have many opportunities to debut and put yourself out there! Campers’ Night on Wednesday means that the evening dance is run entirely by campers calling and playing. There are after-parties every night full of singing and dancing, many informally led. And then, there will be a daily “hot-shots” session where anyone can lead a one-shot workshop on a topic of interest. Think outside the box – storytelling? Plant identification? Synchronized swimming?

American Week will also host the Contra Dance Caller’s Course led by the inimitable Lisa Greenleaf. This course will bring emerging callers to our dance floors and stages, adding a level of thoughtfulness about dance that will enrich our session in numerous ways.

The people and the classes are thrilling enough. But really this is just the tip of the iceberg! What none of us can see yet, what we can only imagine, is all that miraculous energy that emerges when a great community of people get together. Perhaps you’ll find yourself playing tunes with your feet in a pond, or star-gazing with a new best friend, or singing into a microphone for the first time.

The week is yours. Be there. 

~ Emily Troll, Program Director

Schedule

7:15-7:45Movement Improvement with Tai Chi Qigong – Cis Hinkle
7:45-8:15Hot Breakfast served cafeteria style
8:15-8:45Cold Breakfast Coffee/Tea available
9:00-10:00Period 1
Bal Folk — Annie Fain Barralon
Good Neighbor Contras — Ben Sachs-Hamilton
Swing Harmony — Katie Martucci
Old-Time Rhythm and Repertoire — Beverly Smith
Contra Callers Course (course registrants only) — Lisa Greenleaf
10:15-11:15Period 2
Mindbending Contras (and more) – Cis Hinkle
Blues – Clayton Jennings
Flatfooting/Clogging – Annie Fain Barralon
Old-Time Harmony Singing – Beverly Smith
Contra Callers Course (course registrants only) – Lisa Greenleaf
11:15-12:00Swimming, Bookstore staffed
12:00Lunch
1:15-2:15Period 3
Snappy Squares from Mid-Century to the New Millennium – Cis Hinkle
English for All – Scott Higgs
Harmony Mix – Mary Cay Brass
Making Tunes Danceable – Emily Troll
2:30-3:30Period 4
Contra Caller’s Dance Party – Lisa Greenleaf
Waltz – Clayton Jennings
Bookarts: Make a Book a Day – Annie Fain Barralon
Jam with Sam – Sam Bartlett
3:30Tea
3:50-4:30Gathering
4:45-5:30Period 5
Spectacular Pub Singing Practicum – Julia Friend
Ukulele Jam – Katie Martucci
5:30-6:30Special Events, Swimming, Bookstore staffed
6:30Dinner
8:00-8:10Couple Dancing
8:10-10:45Evening Dance Party
11:00After-dance Activities

Class Descriptions

7:15-7:45

Movement Improvement with Tai Chi Qigong – Cis Hinkle

With roots in Chinese medicine, philosophy, and martial arts, qigong is a practice to cultivate and balance qi (chi), translated as “life energy”. Come learn how to use some of these gentle and powerful movements to enhance your dance experience with more

9:00-10:00 Period 1

Bal Folk – Annie Fain Barralon

Music by: Géraud Barralon, Jeremiah McLane: Try a sampling of dances from various regions of France (and Europe), ranging from high energy to slow and sweet, from circular in form to partner dances. Anyone who loves to waltz, scottish, morris or contra dance are guaranteed to love, love, love the b

Good Neighbor Contras – Ben Sachs-Hamilton

Music by: Cedar Stanistreet, Max Newman: We all want to be supportive partners and neighbors on the dance floor, but don’t often get the chance to explore what that really means. In this class we’ll get our morning contra fix while practicing the skills of communication, flexibility and recovery

Swing Harmony – Katie Martucci

Learn to sing in tight three-part swing harmony, a la The Boswell Sisters and The Mills Brothers. We’ll learn a few arrangements of swing standards and dive into some of the theory so students understand how to hear and sing their own harmonies.

Old-Time Rhythm and Repertoire – Beverly Smith

This class is open to both melodic and back up instruments. We will learn some of the great fiddle tunes from the southern mountains and beyond and how to back them up in a group. All tunes will be taught by ear! Basic understanding of your instrument wil

Contra Callers Course (Pre-registration) – Lisa Greenleaf

Link to course page

10:15-11:15 Period 2

Mindbending Contras (and more) – Cis Hinkle

Music by: Jeremiah McLane, Sam Bartlett, Cedar Stanistreet: For those who want a little more spice in their dancing experience, we’ll explore some tricky moves, unexpected twists, and challenging timing in a variety of dance formations.

Blues – Clayton Jennings

Music by: Katie Martucci, Anna Patton: From the ballrooms of Chicago and NY, to the juke joints of the American South, blues dancing is rooted in African American music and traditions. We will cover the basics of two blues dance styles: Jookin and Ballroomin’. Jookin: focusing on rhythmic move

Flatfooting/Clogging – Annie Fain Barralon

Music by: Géraud Barralon: Does listening to lively old-time music make you want to jump out of your seat and dance? It only takes knowing a few steps to dance to your heart’s content and that’s exactly what you’ll be doing during this week of Appalachian style, percussive dance. J

Old-Time Harmony Singing – Beverly Smith

We will look at what makes harmony and how to find a harmony part to a song you may have never sung or even never heard. We will also learn some of the great duets and trios from the early days of the country music — Carter Family, Stanley Brothers, Blue

Contra Callers Course (Pre-registration) – Lisa Greenleaf

Music by: Mary Cay Brass, Julie Metcalf: Link to course page

1:15-2:15 Period 3

Snappy Squares from Mid-Century to the New Millennium – Cis Hinkle

Music by: Beverly Smith, Sam Bartlett, Géraud Barralon: In the 1950s, just before rock ‘n’ roll, square dancing swept the country. Creativity and innovation were all the rage, and new moves were invented every day. That inventive spirit is still alive and well among square dance composers today. Come explore s

English for All – Scott Higgs

Music by: Max Newman, Julie Metcalf: Enjoy a sparkling assortment of joyful, accessible English dances. We’ll get a taste of many different styles, from elegant waltzes to boisterous romps. All danced to glorious music, courtesy of Max Newman and Julie Metcalf.

Harmony Mix – Mary Cay Brass

Mary Cay’s musical interests span a wide world music gamut from various American traditions to the Balkans, South Africa, Georgia and beyond. She will lead a daily mix of easy-to-learn harmony songs that celebrate the seasons, inspire social and environme

Making Tunes Danceable – Emily Troll

What are the secret ingredients to making dancers jump and holler with joy? We’ll do a combination of tune learning and experimenting with ways to make the music as danceable as possible. Anyone is welcome to listen and learn. Players should be able to pl

2:30-3:30 Period 4

Contra Caller’s Dance Party – Lisa Greenleaf

Music by: Max Newman, Julie Metcalf: Come get your groove on at our dance party, featuring the talents of the callers course participants. These callers will energize the dance floor and get folks moving to the beat of our fabulous musicians.

Waltz – Clayton Jennings

Music by: Jeremiah McLane, Mary Cay Brass: Learn to feel comfortable connecting and moving across the waltz floor. We will progress through basic footwork, rotation, connection variations, and fun flourishes that are accessible for everyone. With a balance of instruction and practice, there will b

Bookarts: Make a Book a Day – Annie Fain Barralon

Come rest your feet awhile and make a collection of amazingly varied, mixed-media, small scale book structures that can be used as gifts, personalized journals, simple photo-albums or even songbooks. No previous experience needed and you don’t have to com

Jam with Sam – Sam Bartlett

A daily delve into the beautiful and diverse tune repertoire of American old-time music, from the Round Peak to the flat prairie, and foothills in-between. We might have a song or two….too. All instruments welcome. This will be a playing session not a t

4:45-5:30 Period 5

Spectacular Pub Singing Practicum – Julia Friend

I call this kind of social singing the Vocal Potluck because each person cooks their vocal dish ahead of time, and then everyone gets to taste the chorus even if they don’t know the recipe. We’ll spend most of the workshop singing songs, learning choruses

Ukulele Jam – Katie Martucci

New songs every day! Learn new tunes across a range of genres. You’ll learn new chords, different stylistic techniques and enjoy the unique sonic experience of dozens of ukuleles playing together.

Hot Shots: One-time Offerings

Chestnuts practice, Storytelling MOTH style, Fiddle-specific class, Swing (multiple days), Slow jam, Zydeco, How to lead a song, Doing “feet”, Swedish, Beginning calling, Raccoon bar PARTY?

Registration and Fees

To register for this week, please log into CDSS Commons. You can find more information about the registration process here. If you need financial assistance in order to attend, please go to our scholarships page.

The registration fee for this week is $915.

Staff

Cedar Stanistreet

American Dance & Music Week
Cedar Stanistreet

Katie Martucci

American Dance & Music Week, Harmony of Song & Dance
Katie Martucci

Sam Bartlett

American Dance & Music Week, Family Week at Pinewoods
Sam Bartlett

Lisa Greenleaf

American Dance & Music Week
Lisa Greenleaf

Emily Troll

American Dance & Music Week, Program Directors
Emily Troll

Julia Friend

American Dance & Music Week
Julia Friend

Scott Higgs

American Dance & Music Week
Scott Higgs

Annie Fain Barralon

American Dance & Music Week
Annie Fain Barralon

Clayton Jennings

American Dance & Music Week
Clayton Jennings

Géraud Barralon

American Dance & Music Week
Géraud Barralon

Cis Hinkle

American Dance & Music Week
Cis Hinkle

Mary Cay Brass

American Dance & Music Week
Mary Cay Brass

Jeremiah McLane

American Dance & Music Week
Jeremiah McLane

Julie Metcalf

American Dance & Music Week
Julie Metcalf

Max Newman

American Dance & Music Week, Family Week at Ogontz
Max Newman

Anna Patton

American Dance & Music Week
Anna Patton

Ben Sachs-Hamilton

American Dance & Music Week
Ben Sachs-Hamilton

Beverly Smith

American Dance & Music Week
Beverly Smith