The Old Town School of Folk Music teaches and celebrates music and cultural expressions rooted in the traditions of diverse American and global communities.
Special New Year's Dance at Old Town School on Jan 4, 2014 Co-founded by Chicagoans Peter McDowell and John Legge, Queer Contra Chicago will hold a special New Year dance on Saturday, January 4, 2014 from 7:30-10:30pm in Myron R. Szold Music and Dance Hall at Old Town School of Folk Music, located at 4545 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago, near the Brown Line Western Ave. stop. Contra dance is a form of folk dance, similar to square dancing, but with lines of dancers rather than squares. In our gender-free version, instead of typical male-female gender roles, dancers determine their own role as a leader or follower. According to Old Town School Dance Program Manager Sarah Dandelles "We're so looking forward to starting the year with a dance event, and hope to see a lot of new faces and old friends!" Live music will be provided by local band THE COSMIC OTTERS, and all dances will be taught by caller RACHEL WALLACE. 7:30 - 8:00 PM - Lessons for contra newbies; 8:00 - 10:00 PM - Dance for all with a bit of time for socializing afterwards. No advance planning or experience is needed, Admission is $10, however, no one will be turned away for lack of funds. For more information, visit https://www.facebook.com/ContraChicago. MORE ABOUT CONTRA DANCE: Contra dance is a centuries-old New England folk dance tradition. It's the rowdy red-headed stepchild of English country dance (the kind of dancing you see in Jane Austen movies). Contra dancing is done to live traditional fiddle music in a variety of styles, from lilting Celtic-inspired tunes to rollicking bluegrass. All dances are taught by a caller, who "calls out" instructions throughout the dance. Queer contra dance takes the traditional division of the dance into "gentlemen" and "ladies" and gives it a queer twist. Instead of gender roles, dancers choose whether or not to wear an armband, which determines their role. (If you're curious, the "armband" role corresponds to the traditional gentleman's or leader's role, but there's not much difference between the two roles.) The caller uses the term "armbands" or "bands" to refer to the dancers wearing armbands, and "barearms" or "bares" (no, not bears) to indicate those without armbands. (Description courtesy of Lavender Country and Folk Dancers - www.lcfd.org)
Link to this site: https://www.global-nights.com/events/queer-contra-dance-chicago