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Riverside-Sendai: intercontinental square dance partners

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Riverside-Sendai: intercontinental square dance partners


Square dancers in Sendai C

"ity, Japan (with caller Mac Ojima) and in Riverside, California (with caller Paul Moore), both dancing to each other's callers, an intercontinental square dance made possible by a satellite link (1:15).

We have included most of the introductory remarks, from the Japanese broadcast.

03:00  Mac Ojima calls patter
05:10  discussion with Ojima, in Japanese
06:55  Moore and Ojima say hello via television
08:30  Moore calls singing square, I'm Gonna Love You Forever

Paul Moore explains: "The city of Riverside, CA was sister cities with Sendai City, Japan. On the way to the National Square Dance Convention, the Greenleafs square dance club of Sendai City stopped in Riverside for a potluck barbecue and dance. I was lucky enough to get to be the US caller for the afternoon. The Greenleafs had their own caller, Mac O'Jima (fun placement of the apostrophe), who recorded a handful of tunes for Rhythm records.

"A year later was the celebration of 50 years of sister cityhood, and the two cities sponsored a satellite hook-up so the two communities could visit with each other face-to-face. There were many organizations which had connections, such as the local college marching band, civic groups, country-western bands, etc. The square dancers were included. Mac called patter in a studio in Japan then I did a singing call in Los Angeles. As far as we know, this is the only intercontinental square dance done by satellite.

"By the way, the camera man in Los Angeles had never seen a machine like a Hilton record player/amplifier, so he took several shots of it. There is also a split screen segment that shows dancers in the two locations.

"Mac O'Jima was in the studio in Sendai City (the city that was wiped out by the tsunami after the nuclear plant disaster and I was in Los Angeles.The tape is uncut/unedited. A lot of planning went into it, and we had some rehearsal, but none face to face with the folks in Japan. Sendai City paid for 90 minutes of live satelite time. Any last changes were made over the phone just minutes before air time. There was about a 2 second delay on audio from one studio to the other, which made communicating feel funny -- hear something 2 seconds after it was said.

How did this come about? How did Paul and Mac
know each other?

"Mac was recording for Rhythm Records and had been stateside several time. He and I first met about a 9 months earlier when he and his club came stateside to go the a couple of dance camps and then to the National Square Dance Convention. Those of us in LA were a little slow on the uptake and just sat there and listened to and watched the Sendai dancers.

"We all met again a couple of years later when Mac brought his club to the states for another dancing tour. This time we danced at "Cow Town Square Dance Hall" in Riverside, CA. The city of Riverside paid for the Greenleafs bus transportation from LAX and back. Guest callers that night were Mike Seastrom, Tim Pepper, Red Cullop (no longer calling) and myself. We had about 25 to 30 squares on the floor. Mac had his group do a demonstration for us. He flawlessly took his dancers from basic to advanced choreography in about 3 minutes. Amazingly well trained and cheerful dancers."

Date Created

March 17, 1990


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This Item is related to Item: Square Dance in Japan
Item: Square Dance in Japan - organization is related to This Item
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