Phil Jamison to Present Southern Appalachian Dance Traditions Sept. 16 at UNC Asheville’s Reuter Center


Phil Jamison, the nationally known dance caller, musician, flatfoot dancer and historian, will demonstrate and discuss the history of Southern Appalachian dance, in a Saturday afternoon presentation, from 2-3:30 p.m. on Sept. 16 at UNC Asheville’s Reuter Center. Tickets are available at the door; a $5 donation to the Western North Carolina Historical Association (WNCHA) is requested.

Jamison will illustrate how the traditional square and step dances of Appalachia are a blend of European, African and Native American dance traditions, reflecting the cultural diversity of the region. He also will demonstrate Appalachian flatfoot dancing. A former member of the Green Grass Cloggers, Jamison’s flatfoot dancing was featured in the film, Songcatcher, for which he served as dance consultant.

Jamison is the author of Hoedowns, Reels and Frolics: Roots and Branches of Southern Appalachian Dance. He coordinates the Appalachian Music Program at Warren Wilson College and serves as assistant director and coordinator of Old-Time Music and Dance Week at the Swannanoa Gathering held at Warren Wilson each summer.

This event is part of a series of presentations on Appalachia’s cultural heritage presented in partnership by OLLI, the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at UNC Asheville and the WNCHA, and supported in part by a grant from the Blue Ridge Heritage Area Partnership.

Upcoming programs in this series:

Oct. 14 – The Legacy of Southern Appalachian Dance: From Whose Perspective? – presented by historian Gordon McKinney, professor emeritus, Berea College.

Dec. 2 – Film Screening: A Great American Tapestry – The Many Strands of Mountain Music – presented by David Weintraub, director and producer.

For more information, contact OLLI at 828.251.6140 or the WNCHA at 828.253.9231.