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Hot To Put On & Make Successful The Country Dance Party

This 16-page booklet is credited to Beth Tolman, though it's safe to assume that Ralph Page (her co-author of The Country Dance Book, published in 1937) had a hand in part of the text. It's a simple guide that encourages folks to hold small dance parties: --- You'll have lots of fun giving a country dance party, whether it is held in your kitchen…

Dixie Folk syllabus - 1951

This is the square dance portion of the syllabus from the Dixie Folk and Square Dance Institute held in Georgia in 1951. New Hampshire caller Ralph Page presented a selection of typical New England dances of the time, as well as a few of his own compositions. Georgia caller Fred Collette included a wider variety, including some Western figures, and…

Windmill Lancers - Ralph Page

This recording of Ralph Page teaching the Windmill Lancers was recorded in 1972 at one of his weeklong camps. At the start, you hear Ralph providing some historical background on the Lancers before he starts teaching the figures. If you want to jump to the dance itself, it begins around 7:00. The music is "Alte Kameraden," played by the Heintz…

Les Lanciers de Quebec - Quebec Lancers

This video illustrates the first two figures of a Quebecois version of the Lancers Quadrille, danced at the Ralph Page Dance Legacy Weekend in January, 2009. The tune and the name for the first figure is La Rencontre des Dames; the tune for the second figure is L’oiseau dans la cage. The music is played by Raz-de-Marée / Tidal Wave:…

Northern Junket

In a labor of love, Ralph Page single-handedly published 165 issues of this journal from 1949 through 1984. The University of New Hampshire's Library of Traditional Music and Dance has digitized and made available a complete set of these magazines, along with biographical information about Page. The library is also the repository for an extensive…

History of Square Dancing - Ralph Page

Between 1972 and 1974, Ralph Page wrote a series of essays entitled A History of Square Dancing. For ease in downloading, we have collected them into "chapters" that group together similar topics. The essays were published in the magazine Square Dancing as follows:Dancing In New England 11/1972The Revolutionary Era 1/1973Direct Ancestors…

Darling Nellie Gray - Ralph Page (clip)

This dance was Ralph Page's signature closing dance for an evening program. Compare it with Happy Hale, whom some think was Page's source for the dance. There are many examples of this classic singing square on our website.

Ralph Page

Here is the citation that accompanied Page being awarded the 1980 CALLERLAB Milestone award, that organization's highest honor. Page was reluctant to accept this award from an organization that represented modern square dance, the form of dance that he had argued vehemently against in his Northern Junket "Take It or Leave It" columns for many…

Monadnock Folkways brochure - Page & Gowing

Brochure describing the summer program created by Ralph Page and Gene Gowing. Also included is an article by Gowing describing his idea for an "American Folkways" school. (This latter item appeared in American Squares, June, 1950.)

The Lancers - Ralph Page's historical notes

In the pages of his Northern Junket magazine, caller and dance historian Ralph Page enjoyed sharing articles based on his dance research. He included a six-part series on the Lancers. California caller and choreographer Chris Page (no relation) created a highly personal index to some of his favorite pieces from the magazine, including links to this…

Ted Glabach - Vermont dance caller

This is the transcription of a lengthy interview with Dummerston, VT, dance caller Ted Glabach and his wife Marie, conducted in 1978 by Steve Green. Glabach was a farmer, born around 1913, who had invited fiddler Louis Jillson to call a dance in Putney, Vermont. (Jillson himself is mentioned by Eloisie Linscott in her classic work (1939), Folk…

Dudley Laufman - Monadnock Muddle

This dance comes from the repertoire on the great New England caller, Ralph Page, and is called here by Dudley Laufman in the "Retrospective" session at the Ralph Page Dance Legacy Weekend, January 19, 2013, Durham, New Hampshire. This year's session focused on square dances of many styles. The tune is Soldier's Joy, played by Two Fiddles (Dudley…

Square dance callers - photos

A series of square dance magazine covers featuring these modern square dance callers:

Baldwin, Charlie
Brower, Jim
Brundage, Al
Burdick, Stan
Calhoun, Louis
Castner, Bill
Davis, Johnny
Gaudreau, Herbie
Gilmore, Ed
Haag, Jerry
Helt, Jerry
Johnson, Bruce
Jones, Jon
Lacky, Harry
Lane, Frank
LeClair, Johnny
Leger, Dick
Lewis,…

Dance magazine publishers - photos

This photograph appeared in the October, 1950, issue of Sets in Order. It shows a gathering of prominent dance leaders at the folk dance camp at the University of the Pacific, Stockton, CA; each man was the publisher of a magazine that looked at different aspects of folk dance. Shown, left to right, are Ralph Page (Northern Junket), Herb Greggerson…

Trail of the Lonesome Pine - Tony Parkes

Recorded at the Greenfield, MA, Grange Hall on June 27, 2010. The event was sponsored by Country Dance and Song Society to celebrate the publication of "On the Beat with Ralph Sweet."

Tony Parkes, caller. Don Armstrong is credited with setting the dance figures (by Ralph Page) to this tune. "The Trail of the Lonesome Pine" is the title of a…

Darling Nellie Gray - Adam Boyce

Traditional singing square dance, recorded in West Newbury, VT, on July 24, 2010. The caller and fiddler is Adam Boyce, accompanied by piano player Donna Weston. This dance was Ralph Page's closing number on many occasions.

Trail of the Lonesome Pine - Tod Whittemore

Tod Whittemore is the caller; music is provided by Bob McQuillen, piano; Randy Miller, fiddle, and Peter Siegel, mandolin. This was part of a dance workshop on singing squares, recorded on January 15, 2011, at the 24th annual Ralph Page Dance Legacy Weekend in Durham, NH. Named in honor of the great New England caller of contra and square dances,…

Monadnock Muddle (clip) - Ralph Page

Ralph Page calling with music provided by Dick Richardson on fiddle, Junior Richardson on bass, and Johnny Trombley on piano, joined by Norm Smith on banjo. Released on Disc 363, the flip side of the Jingle Bells recording. The tune is Soldier's Joy. This recording shows how a traditional New England caller could retain experienced dancers'…

Jingle Bells (clip) - Ralph Page

A fine example of why Ralph Page was known as New England's singing square dance caller, back in the day. The dance is Odd Couple to the Center, set to the tune of Jingle Bells. Ralph Page calling with music provided by Dick Richardson on fiddle, Junior Richardson on bass, and Johnny Trombley on piano, joined by Norm Smith on banjo. Released on…

Swing Two Ladies - Ralph Page, 1955

Recorded at a dance in Fitchburg, MA, in 1955 by Harold Spaulding. Released on Dudley Laufman's CD compilation, "The Sound of Ralph Page." See also a video clip of Tony Parkes teaching this dance at the Brasstown Dare To Be Square.