Encyclopedia Virginia: Folklife http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/img/EV_Logo_sm.gif Encyclopedia Virginia This is the url http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org The first and ultimate online reference work about the Commonwealth /Dance_During_the_Colonial_Period Tue, 27 Oct 2015 16:10:53 EST Dance during the Colonial Period http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Dance_During_the_Colonial_Period Dancing was the dominant pastime of colonial Virginians of all classes, though it was a special occupation of the planter elite. As the Virginia colony stabilized late in the seventeenth century, its inhabitants attempted to model their emerging culture after that of England, where dancing was hugely popular. Soon dancing began to take place in plantation homes, taverns, and halls built for the express purpose of hosting formal parties. A market developed for professional instructors, or dance masters, who were expected to know the latest dances from Europe. Dancing served a recreational, social, and political purpose; being a skilled dancer was an indication of good breeding, while balls gave men and women the opportunity to express themselves through their dress, partner, and choice of dance. Most dances fell into two main categories: "fancy" dances, such as minuets, allemandes, and hornpipes; and "country" dances. Country dances were simpler to learn and more egalitarian, as each dancing couple interacted with every other couple on the floor. Enslaved persons and lower-class whites held their own informal dance parties where they often performed jigs and reels—more loosely structured dances derived from the traditions of Africans and Scots, respectively—which were adapted by the upper class. By the 1790s, dancing schools had grown in number and in popularity, and lessons became available to Virginians of various classes. At about this time, the gentry class began to feel more ambivalent toward the more democratic country dances, which threatened social discord and even blurred racial boundaries in a culture that was becoming increasingly defensive of its slave system.
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/Bristol_Sessions_1927_The Thu, 13 Sep 2012 14:52:40 EST <![CDATA[Bristol Sessions (1927), The]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Bristol_Sessions_1927_The The Bristol Sessions occurred in 1927 when the Victor Talking Machine Company brought a field unit to Bristol, Tennessee/Virginia, to record musicians from the region. Victor held the sessions on the second and third floors of the Taylor-Christian Hat Company building at 408 State Street on the Tennessee side of Bristol's main thoroughfare, which also serves as the Tennessee-Virginia border. Director Ralph Peer and the Victor engineers recorded fiddle tunes, sacred songs, string bands, harmonica solos, and others from July 25 to August 5. Celebrated as the session that produced the first recordings of country music legends Jimmie Rodgers and the Carter Family, the session also featured artists who had made previous recordings for other record labels. The session captured on 78-rpm commercial recordings an excellent cross section of the styles of music present in the Blue Ridge Mountains and Appalachian regions.
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/_Uncle_Gabriel Thu, 23 Aug 2012 11:38:29 EST <![CDATA["Uncle Gabriel"]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/_Uncle_Gabriel Thu, 23 Aug 2012 11:38:29 EST]]>