CANCELED: Community Contra Dance

Photo credit Elissa Paquette

TONIGHT’S CONTRA DANCE HAS BEEN CANCELED DUE TO WEATHER.

The Community Contra Dance Series hosted by G.A.L.A. continues on Saturday, October 27th HAS BEEN CANCELED. Dances run from 7:00 to 10:00pm, with the first half hour dedicated to a brief overview of the basic steps of New England contra dance, and neither experience nor a partner is required. Dances are a fun and energizing night out for all ages and abilities, even if you simply prefer to cheer the dancers on from the sidelines and enjoy the live music.

Many first-time dancers are planning to return for another evening of great music and fun. Instruction and the evening’s calls will be from long-time contra caller Shari Shakti, accompanied by the back-by-popular demand band, Binding Energy.

Shari was led to her first contra dance in Dover, NH back in 2007 and has been fully engaged in it ever since. She now lives back in her home state of Maine and has discovered the joy of calling, with incredibly rich mentorship from Dugan & Dela Murphy. Her first full night of calling at the 2017 Portland, ME (PICD)Halloween dance, found her sporting a symbolic butterfly outfit, representing the spreading of her official calling wings.

Since then, Shari has called a variety of dances, ranging in size from small to 120+ dancers. She enjoys the diversity and watching the dancers having fun! She has called in ME, NH, MA, and CT so far. She has also participated in a Downeast Friends of the Folk Arts fundraiser dance, HenryFest in Yarmouth, ME, Portland’s Congress Square Park, and will call as a part of Beantown Stomp (March 2019) in Cambridge, MA. She’s looking forward to more travel and opportunities to spread the joy that is contra dancing!

Fiddle, piano, hammered dulcimer and Irish flute are just some of the instruments played by Saturday evening’s three musicians, who share musical specialties, including Celtic, French-Canadian and Scottish music.

Dr. Paul Lizotte, fiddler with Boston-based Floorplay, who in his spare time is a professor of English at Nashua’s Rivier University, has been playing fiddle for 20 years, including being awarded a NH Humanities Council Traditional Arts Apprentice grant for further studies with fiddle master Rodney Miller. Irish whistle and wooden flute musician and instructor Jim DiCarlo has, when not teaching physics, performed for 20 years with some of the northeast’s top fiddlers. Brad Robinson will join in on guitar.

Dance admission fees are as follows: $8.00 for adults, $5.00 for 6yr-18yr olds, and 5yr and under free. Anyone experiencing financial hardship or large families are welcome to pay as able. In an effort to protect the newly refinished wood floor in the Great Hall participants are encouraged to bring an extra pair of shoes for dancing that do not have a black sole. If you are unable to bring extra shoes there will be a brush at the door for you to remove dirt and snow before entering.

G.A.L.A. is also looking to fill a few volunteer shifts for the dances this year if you are interested. Attendees and community members are also encouraged to bring a snack to share for the snack table for it turns out that dancing can build an appetite! If you do bring a snack, G.A.L.A. asks you to consider healthy options with little or no processed sugar, such as nuts, crackers and cheese, fruit, or chips and salsa for example.

For more information about this event or to sign up to volunteer visit their website at www.galacommunity.org, call the office at 603-569-1500, or email josh@galacommunity.org

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