Thu, Apr 25|
Le Bal Perdu – Dance Traditions from the Corners of France (in English)
Time & Location
Apr 25, 2024, 5:00 PM – 6:00 PM
About the event
Circle dances and branles from centuries past; dances in lines and squares that trickled down to French villages from the contredanses of the Parisian court; 19th century couple dances with the radical idea that you can dance face to face with your partner…
These traditions of music and dance were once a part of everyday lives in rural France. People in each region had their own ways of dancing and their own music for the dance, reflecting the great variety of local cultures found across the country. As France modernized, though, these traditions started to disappear. Tastes in music and dance changed, bagpipers and hurdy-gurdy players put away their instruments, and village dances became mostly a memory. But the 1970s brought a revival of interest in France’s many regional cultures, and now people all over the country are playing the old music and dancing the old dances, with both an eye on tradition and a remix for contemporary ears and feet. With images and video, Leslie Barr will introduce you to these old and new traditions of music and dance and how such traditions help tell the story of the people of France’s many pays.
Leslie Barr, based in the Washington, DC area, discovered French traditional music in the 1980s and has been traveling to France to play fiddle and dance ever since. She has attended countless bals, learning the dances of France’s many regions, and, with her academic background in ethnomusicology, has explored both the roots and the revival of French musique et danse populaire. She has given workshops in dance and music and played for balfolk dances throughout the Northeast.
This event will be on Zoom and is free for all Alliance Française members in the U.S., AATF members, and invited guests of the presenters or publicists. Non-members or persons who have no AF chapter nearby can purchase tickets ($10). Please click here to register.