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Published on Nov 3, 2011
This is a video of a dance at the Guiding Star Grange in Greenfield MA on October 5, 2011. It was sponsored by the Downtown Amherst Contradance series. I did my best to capture the feeling of the dance with the very low light level available. Enjoy. "ContraEvolution" was a first-of-its-kind, 5-hour event designed to both showcase emerging talent in the evolving world of "techno" contra, and to allow those musicians a chance to play and collaborate together. "Techno" contra dance music, also called "cross-over" or "electro-traditional", is music for contra dancing that includes elements of traditional "fiddle music" combined with electronic music techniques and forms such as loops, samples, sequencing, synthesizing, etc. This event featured three of the most well-known musical groups in this realm today: Perpetual e-Motion (Ed Howe and John Cote), Double Apex (Julie Vallimont and Brendan Carey-Block) and DJ Improper (Jeremiah Seligman). Each group played a set on their own and then all three did a longer combined set for the last part of the evening.
Calling for the event were two of New England's favorties, Nils Fredland and Will Mentor, both of whom have considerable experience calling to this kind of music...which can at times be considerably trickier than calling to traditional contra music where the musical phrases are generally very clear. Nils and Will also collaborated throughout the night including on the final multi-dance medley at the end. The dance shown in this video comes from the collaboration set just before the medley with all musicians on the stage.