I named this blog “The Piano Mistress” with the intention of sharing my experience and memoirs as a piano teacher to amuse and inspire other music lovers and educators. However, I included in the heading the phrase “for love of music” because I truly believe that be to a good musician on any one instrument, it only increases our skill and our pleasure by appreciating and participating actively in many forms of music expression. For those who are truly “musical” in spirit…everything around us IS music!
I am a member of two dance societies at this time and each is an experience of delicious movement and patterns, exercise, co-operation and community. Irish set dance is one, and English Country Dance is the other. Periodically I participate also in the Contra Dance community, which is just a tad freer and wilder than the other two. Each have a unique energetic and expressive “flavor” and all are so much fun both to DO and to watch!
Contra is exceptionally inter-generational, free-wheeling within form and all three forms bring people together in the spirit of good will, co-creation, co-operation and inter-active enjoyment.
This video of a Contra Dance event..”a Flurry”….is one I watch often especially when I need a pick-me-up and a prescription for smiling and laughing out loud with delight. The group performing the music is called “Great Bear” but I love to just call them Mamma Bear and Her Boys because they are an accomplished musical family with that magical touch of “cool” and in-charge while keeping the mass of happy dancers on the beat, ultimately working themselves and those on the dance floor into a state of joyful expressive abandonment!
Mamma is there at the keys, conservatively dressed and wearing pearls and her two sons are on fiddle and guitar in their jeans and the baseball cap. As they start the music they are strong on the beat, the “tune” is somewhat unusually sensuous for contra rather than “country” but by the time you get to 8:00 of the 10:00 minutes, the boys have entered a wild contra trance and the dancers as well…very on the beat but with a wild “flurry” and much silliness and fun-filled ecstacy on the floor. (Keep your eyes on the guy in the black and white patterned shirt..quite a clown…and the two young college guys dancing together and having the time of their lives!)
I cannot help but think we should send this whole live crew… dancers and musicians.. on tour to war-torn countries who have themselves forgotten to dance, sing, laugh and make music together. In places of discord or violence, might they release their incessant and irreconcilable ancient hostilities against each other, accepting the invitation to come instead to a regional dance flurry like this with those they know and those they do not know, leaving behind for just a weekend the grudges, gripes, eye-for-an-eye retributions, religious differences, and instead, become energized, inspired and connected by delight, music and dance…? Could that be a wondrous possibility for Peace? This video makes me SO Happy!
NOTE: on occasion, the video below stalls around 8:30 min. If so, just move the video counter forward a tad to the right and it will continue…don’t miss the END three minutes…just great!
From Christine, The Greening Spirit