The Historic Jonesborough Dance Society will hold a contra dance on Saturday, February 18, 2017 at the Jonesborough Visitors Center, 117 Boone Street. Admission to the dance is $7, $5 for HJDS members and $5 for full time students. A family package allows parents to bring all of their own children for a total of $15. All dances are smoke and alcohol free. No partner is necessary. Families and children are welcome! A half hour contra dance workshop will be offered at 7pm.
Performing for this event will be the band Cailen Campbell from Asheville and George Paul from Morgantown, NC. The caller is Terry Doyle from Morganton, NC. The dance on will run from 7:30-10:30pm.
Terry Doyle is an accomplished caller who travels far and wide around the country to call contra dances. She is currently teaching at Western Piedmont Community College in Morgantown and is the co-director of the Appalachian Folk School in Mountain City, TN. While teaching and calling contra dances, you’ll find Terry flat foot dancing on stage adding percussive rhythm sounds that accompany the music.
Cailen Campbell has been thrilling contra dancers all over the southeast and around the country for over a decade. His innovative, highly improvisational, lyrical fiddling has been heard in numerous acclaimed regional dance bands, including The Atomic City Rhythm Rascals, The String Beings, The Rocket Boys, The Gypsy Hicks, in addition to a dynamic duo with renowned Asheville area guitarist and banjo virtuoso David Brown. Campbell recently played with the Greasy Beans on behalf of the North Carolina Dance Theater at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC.
Cailen Campbell has been described as one of the most virtuosic and high-energy fiddlers in the Southeast. As both a dancer and musician he is known for his stunning ability to improvise, cross time signatures and musical genres with ease, and for his brilliant self-expression. Cailen joined David Brown on guitar to play as Contraversial until last year when David became part of the very successful touring band, Rising Appalachia.
Last Summer, Campbell joined forces with George and Andy Pond, members of the Snake Oil Medicine Show, to dazzle the dance crowds in the Asheville area with incredible music. The Snake Oil Medicine Show started their bluegrass, hillbilly ragtime bop, reggae and experimental jazz journey in 1995 in the Boone, NC area. For many years, along with George’s wife Caroline and an assortment of other musicians, Snake Oil Medicine Show performed all over the world. These days, with small children at home, they are playing local and have found Cailen Campbell to be all about having fun playing for contra dances.
Joining Campbell is journeyman pianist and composer, George Paul. For years, Paul performed with the Avant Gardeners, one of the premier contra and swing dance bands in the country. Their music consisted of American hybrid variety tunes, facile improvisations, and a range of performing styles from traditional swing, Celtic and old time. Recently, Paul toured with Fyrefly and left the dancers who attended A New Years Affair here back in January full of dance bliss and joy.
Contra dances are community events. At almost any contra you will find people of all ages and all dance skill levels, from young to old, beginner to expert. Contra dancers form a very open and welcoming group of people. You can come alone or with others since it is a tradition to dance with a variety of partners throughout the night. It is perfectly acceptable for either a man or a woman to ask someone to dance. It’s a great way to make friends with someone they haven’t met before. You will find contra dancing a great way to make new friends.
For more information, contact event organizer, David Wiley, at 423-534-8879 or visit www.historicjonesboroughdancesociety.org and the Historic Jonesborough Dance Society on FACEBOOK.