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Jerry Helt

This is a short clip from a tip called by Jerry Helt at the 1954 National Square Dance Convention in Dallas, Texas.The choreography is the "classic" figure Texas Whirlwind.

"Doc" Alumbaugh

This is a short clip from a tip called by "Doc" Alumbaughat the 1954 National Square Dance Convention in Dallas, Texas. The choreography is the "classic" figures Dip and Dive and Right Lady High, Left Lady Low.

Bob Osgood

This is a short clip from a tip called by Bob Osgood at the 1954 National Square Dance Convention in Dallas, Texas. The choreography is a 3 Ladies Chain routine.

Ed Gilmore - Caller's Institute

This is a transcription of a presentation made by Ed Gilmore to a group of callers. He starts by outline his own credentials to be leading such a session, and mentions in passing "that for the last four years I've been a full-time professional. Which means that I am devoting 14-15 hours a day, 7 days a week, to square dance calling and square dance…

Doc Alumbaugh - styling

Alumbaugh's "Styling Suggestion for Square Dancing" is a systematic approach to what he sees as the five components:
• Poise
• Bearing
• Rhythm
• Timing
• Local Mannerisms

The author quickly acknowledges that there are different local styles; his aim is to present the style of southern California and to encourage other callers to…

Jimmy Morris and Tommy Cavanagh interview

Interview with two British callers, conducted by Mildred Buhler and shared with her dancers back in California. The two men were the co-founders, president and vice-president, of the fledgling British Association of American Square Dance Clubs with which Buhler was involved when she moved to London. During the interview, Morris says, "We really try…

Bruce Johnson interview

This interview with a young Bruce Johnson-- he's 25 at the time-- was conducted by Mildred Buhler as part of her "Calling All Folk Dancers" radio program in 1950-1951. (The illustration is from 20 years later, when he's on the cover of Sets in Order.) Included here is a section near the beginning of the broadcast, which included Johnson calling a…

Square Dance Time - Tommy Cavanagh

Two clips from Tommy Cavanagh's "Square Dance Time" album., excerpts from "Hoedown Boogie" and "Boil that Cabbage." Callers in Great Britain from time to time receive the Tommy Cavanagh award for service to square dancing in that country. Cavanagh was one of the callers befriended by Mildred Buhler when she moved from Northern California to London…

Wakamono Tachi - Masaru Wada

Excerpt from recording by caller Masaru Wada, with calls in English but with additional lyrics in Japanese

Masaru Wada - 2010 Milestone Award

Text of the CALLERLAB Milestone award presented to caller Masaru Wada of Japan, as well as the speech made by Mike Seastrom in presenting the award. Seastrom acknowledged, "While there are other fine leaders who have spread the joy of the square dance activity and helped it grow in Japan," Masaru Wada stands above the rest.

Square Dance Clubs, Texas Style

This is a detailed description of the organizational plan of the Sally Goodin square dance club of Houston, Texas, which followed a common Texas model at the time:

"Most of the square dancing is done in square dance clubs organized solely for this purpose, conducted entirely by the members, and with no profit except to the orchestra and in some…

Don't Forget, Callers, Our Style Is Always Showing

This is a copy of a section of the minutes of a meeting of the Southern California Callers Association. Bob Van Antwerp presented the training session on the subject of dancing style and how callers should teach it to new dancers.

Pardners - Jerry Lewis square dance

The 1956 film Pardners, starring Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis, originally had a square dance sequence with Jerry Lewis as the caller, testimony to the role that square dancing had in American popular culture at that time. Bob Osgood coached Jerry Lewis in the art of dance calling. This short clip is from the trailer, but the actual dance sequence…

Les Quatre Berceaux - related documents

This item gathers together various documents related to the videotaped performance of the dance, Les Quatre Berceaux:• Instructions, as interpreted and explained by John Ramsay with assistance from Mark Rice• Chart constructed by Mark Rice to assist the group as they attempted to re-create the dance• Article sent by Dance Discovery…

Les Quatre Berceaux - cotillion for 6 couples

“Les Quatre Berceaux” (The Four Cradles) was presented by Dance Discovery at the Missouri History Museum in conjunction with an exhibit on Napoleon. The group reconstructed the dance from the printed French description published in Paris in 1801.Credits:Rebecca Taylor translated the archaic French into modern English.John Ramsay…

Polka Square - Ralph Page (clip)

This clip of Ralph Page calling Polka Square demonstrates his melodic style, part patter call and part singing. The musicians are Page's Boston Boys: George Gulyassy, fiddle; Bob Gulyassy, guitar; Phil Jamoulis, bass, joined here by Walter Erickson, accordion, and Walter Lob on fiddle.

Gary Ellison interview

This is an interview conducted by Nathaniel Lucy as part of his research for his master's thesis, "Ozark Jubilee: The Impact of a Revional Identity at a Crossroads," written in 2014. The subject of the interview is Gary Ellison, who explains, "In 1959 and in 1960, the last two years, I was the square dance caller for the Wagon Wheelers, which was…

The Rural Square Dance in the Northeastern United States: A Continuity of Tradition

This doctoral thesis in folklore is based on a study of square dances in New York state, Vermont, and New Hampshire. Especially interesting are the descriptions of traditional dances, based on the author's observation, and interviews with dancers, augmented with questionnaires.The author notes the difficulties of collecting information from…

Abilene Lift - Rickey Holden

An early description by Rickey Holden of the so-called "Abilene lift," a distinctive style of incorporating a two-steps into square dance movement.

"How We Do It In Our Town" - Emmette Wallace

This is a series of articles comparing how basic figures are taught and danced in different parts of the country. The first segment appeared in October, 1949, in American Squares, and the series continued occasionally until October, 1951.