1. Ralph Page Dance Legacy Weekend Videos
    on the Internet


    From NH Chronicle, Channel 9, Mon. Feb. 15, 7:30 PM!

    The Ralph Page Weekend was featured on NH Chronicle, Channel 9, Mon. Feb. 15, 7:30 PM. Most or all of it has been archived and can be viewed on  WMUR (Channel 9) and  on YouTube.

    Click on the following links:

    Part I (7:11). This is on the WMUR web site, and has a mixture of interviews, music, dance, etc.

    Part 2 (5:20). Also on WMUR, this portion features the Ralph Page collection at Special Collections at the UNH Library, as well as some dancing and interviews.

    Part 3 (3:48). From David Millstone’s YouTube page, this segment is Tony Parkes calling Fiddleheads (a Ted Sannella dance) with the Lizards playing.

    UNH Library Wildcarts (6:18). I noticed this on YouTube and figured a link would be in order! Chrissy calling with the infamous Wildcarts dancing!

    Here’s some of the original description:

    Look for the Ralph Page Weekend on New Hampshire Chronicle. You may have seen them filming; now we’ll be on Channel 9. Here’s what it says on the web site:

    1. “Dance socials are a great way to meet friends, old and new. They are a form of community gathering that's as old as our nation. In fact contra dances still take place in every state in the country.

    2. “In a special NH Chronicle, Jennifer Crompton shows us how thanks to some incredible individuals, and a vast UNH collection, the Granite State is considered by many to be Contra dancing's spiritual and historical home.”

    For more information, go to:


    Event Schedule ~ available in the Sidebar on the right

  2. Bob McQuillen & Dudley Laufman

    2002 & 2009 National Endowment for the Arts
    National Heritage Fellows

    The Nation’s Highest Honor for Folk & Traditional Arts

    Click on their names above and enjoy! 

  1. The New England Folk Festival Association in collaboration with the Center for the Humanities at the University of New Hampshire invites you to join us to celebrate our New England music and dance traditions. This weekend is named in honor of Ralph Page, who was pivotal in sustaining and reviving traditional contra and square dancing in New England.


  1. Evaluation Forms are available (below).

  2. Doug Plummer, RPDLW regular and photographer, has put a couple videos of this year’s Weekend on YouTube.

Ralph Page Legacy Weekend Videos on the Web

The Ralph Page Weekend was featured on Channel 9’s New Hampshire Chronicle. See the sidebar on the right for details and links to videos on the Channel 9 web site.

  1. Go to the sidebar on the right for details on what’s available, and for links to the videos available for viewing.

Doug Plummer, RPDLW regular and photographer, has put a couple videos of this year’s Weekend on YouTube.

Additional Useful Weekend Information & Links

The Ralph Page Dance Legacy Weekend is held annually in Durham, NH at the University of New Hampshire in January on the weekend that ends with Martin Luther King Day. Look below for links to all the information you might want to know about the Weekend.

2011 Evaluation Form, Event Schedule,

Contact Information & Other Information

Evaluation Form. Please help us with your feedback: what did you like, what might need some work?

RPDLW Registration Flyer, 2011. Click on the link to download the Final Registration Flyer in PDF format. Side 1, Publicity Flyer; Side 2, Registration Form. Feel free to copy it and put it out at your local dance! In PDF format, 8.5x11" paper.

2011 Final Schedule Grid The 2011 schedule is out! Still open to change but that‘s normal (PDF).

  1. New: Special RPDLW Rates at the Pines Guest House In Durham! $59/night; 15 min. walk from UNH. Tell them you’re attending the RPDLW. 603-868-3361.

2011 Work Exchange. Apply to work in exchange for a reduced fee; important details inside.

Contact Information. Click on the link to go to a page with Weekend contact information

Scholarship Appliication (fillable).. Music & Calling Scholarships cover admission & Banquet; attend workshops, calling/sit-in opportunities. Apply by 12/1. Print/fill out and save; return by mail/e-mail..

Other information: Look below,  center.

2011 Lodging Info. Lodging and hospitality information

Additional Information: About the Staff, Weekend Photos, Stories, Articles, etc. - Learn More About the Weekend!

2011 Ralph Page Dance Legacy Weekend Staff Biographies

Peter’s Note on the 2011 Staff Biographies: Generally these are compiled from some combination of available information about our staff and biographies submitted by the staff themselves, combined, and sent to me to be posted here. For whatever reason, this year I received staff biographies and slightly edited versions of staff contributions separately. Both seemed interesting enough to be worth including. Not having time to combine them, I’m including both with at most minimal editing to eliminate excessive overlap.


  1. Lynn Ackerson. A regular attendee of the Ralph Page Dance Legacy Weekend, Lynn is one of the featured staff callers this year. Lynn comes to us all the way from California where she regularly calls contra and square dances. Lynn has a very clear and comfortable calling style that gets dancers moving and enjoying themselves!

  2. In Lynn’s Words:

  3. The only thing larger than Lynn’s collection of colorful socks is her collection of fun contras and hot squares. Her home base is El Cerrito California, and most of her calling is in Northern California, with frequent trips to the Pacific Northwest and New England. Lynn is known for creating a warm, friendly atmosphere and for choosing dances that are interesting and accessible, and then teaching them very clearly and concisely.

  4. Tod Whittemore. One of the best known, and most sought-after callers in New England for many years, Tod has moved back to the northeast after a seventeen year “break” in Arizona.  Now calling Connecticut home, Tod is once again bringing his smooth calling/performing style to the Ralph Page Weekend.  We are extremely pleased to have Tod back with us this year!

  5. In Tod’s Words:

  6. Crashing into New England Dance in Fitzwilliam NH during the summer of 1971, then proceeded to lighten the landing but not the passion and enthusiasm with the guidance of Duke Miller and Ralph Page. Back to the Boston area in the winter and found the contra dance revival of the 70's and 80's about rise. Ted Sannella and Larry Jennings kindly guided and channeled my enthusiasm into a workable force of nature embracing the old and new dances, young and old dancers. Forever on the hunt for dances with character, charm and simplicity a personal style emerged.

  7. The summer of 1990 was spent in Wyoming where I met my wife. We married and moved west to follow other interests. My love and passion for the essence of dance never diminished. When the opportunity came to revisit, fun was always the result.  As it is today New England dances are a blast and always will. The tradition is immensely strong embracing many interpretations and practitioners.

  8. How lucky can we be?

  1. Dudley Laufman ~ Friday night & Retrospective. Dudley, a musician, teacher, author and dance caller from Canterbury, N.H., is a recent awardee of the nation’s highest honor in the folk and traditional arts, the National Heritage Fellowship.  Dudley will add his unique style to the mix on Friday night and help to get our Weekend off to a great start!

  2. Nothing from Dudley, so I (Peter Y) will write a little bit here:

  3. I guess Dudley didn’t write anything about himself so I will. I’ve known him for probably close to 35 years as a dance caller, musician, friend, one of the most important sources of information and inspiration in my music and dance world, and as someone who has probably been responsible for bringing more fun into my life and the lives of many others around him than just about anyone else I can think of. He doesn’t call that many public dances these days, but for as long as I can remember he’s done a vast number of gigs every year: in the school systems, parties, weddings, dances for all sorts of groups. Most are beginners or relatively so, and Dudley gets them up dancing immediately with almost no teaching, and they love it. No one does it better. Then there are the parties where we’ve danced Money Musk without a walk-through, the house junkets, the Ride, too many even to remember or count. Ralph Page was one of Dudley’s main teachers and sources of inspiration so when it turned out we were doing a Retrospective on Ralph he was the one who came to mind immediately.

Bands and Musicians

Sugar River Band ~ Friday Night. This home-grown New Hampshire band consists of Jane, Francis, Russell, Sophie and Neil Orzechowski.  The Sugar River Band plays traditional fiddle music from New England and Sweden on fiddles, piano, and accordion. New England dance music is influenced by French-Canadian, Irish, Scottish, English, and Cape Breton styles

  1. In Jane’s Words:

  2. Jane has been playing the fiddle since she was a child dancing and playing for the Swedish Folk Dance Club of Boston at the New England Folk Festival every year. Her son, Francis, plays piano, bouzouki and accordion. Her sons, Russell and Neil, and daughter, Sophie, play fiddle, piano and accordion.  They have all had the opportunity to be apprenticed to Bob McQuillen for contra dance piano often through the NH Council of the Arts and Neil has apprenticed to Dudley Laufman for calling and fiddling for traditional New England barn dances through the NH Arts Council, as well.

  3. The Orzechowskis are from Newport, NH and have been playing as the Sugar River Band since 1995.

Randy Miller, Peter Siegel and Bob McQuillen. Piano master Bob McQuillen (2002 National Endowment For the Arts National Heritage Fellowship recipient) is joined by Randy Miller on fiddle and Peter Siegel on guitar to make beautiful, traditional contra dance music.

  1. In Randy’s Words:

  2. Randy's musical style is influenced by the fiddling of Paddy Cronin, Sean McGuire, Simon St. Pierre, and Jerry Holland. These great players inspired him to learn the fiddle while acquiring his own style of bowing and ornamentation. Combining sounds from his home state of New Hampshire with Irish and Cape Breton Celtic styles, Randy plays "New Hamptic." An avid dancer steeped in the robust contra style of the Monadnock region of southwestern New Hampshire, Randy phrases the melody with a dancer's sensibility. In addition to giving private lessons, Randy leads workshops in fiddling and has been designated a Master Teacher of Contra Dance Music by the N.H. State Council on the Arts. Randy also collects and publishes fiddle tunes under the imprint, Fiddlecase Books.

  3. In Peter’s Words:

  4. Peter Siegel's music is a melting pot of Americana. With roots in the Hudson Valley of NY, he was raised on Phil Ochs, post 60's environmental activism of the Hudson River Sloop Clearwater, Pete Seeger and the old time square dance scene. When he's not playing songs he's with the Greenfield dance band every other Friday or any number of other dance bands- Lez Z Boys, Crazy Quilt, Clew Bay. He has recording credits with such notables as Pete Seeger. Peter has led traditional music workshops nation wide in places such as the American Festival of Fiddle tunes in Port Townsend, WA, Swannanoah Gathering in Asheville, NC, Fiddle and Dance at Ashokan, The John C Campbell Folk School in Brasstown NC and various CDSS camps.

  5. Nothing from Bob, so I (Peter Y) will write something here:

  6. The most notable thing I could say is that nothing really needs to be said about Bob: most people who come to the Weekend undoubtedly already know and love him. As a piano player he’s the one I look to as setting the standard for what New England dance piano is all about. Many people are flashier, but no one does it better. He’s written some of the outstanding tunes of the New England repertoire, and nearly every tune is written for a person, and he has something nice to say about every one of those people, and about many others. What a great guy!

Firetruck. Firetruck is a versatile band comprised of three accomplished musicians:  Ethan Hazzard-Watkins on fiddle, Anna Patton on clarinet and Bruce Rosen on keyboard. Whether grooving on an Old-time, Irish or French Canadian fiddle tune, trading daring improvisations on a gypsy jazz or swing number, or exploring the nuances of a graceful waltz or elegant English country dance tune, this trio of versatile musicians makes dynamic, spontaneous and electrifying music.

  1. In Ethan’s Words:

  2. The Firetruck melodic duo specializes in tight unisons, creative harmony and daring improvisation, supported by rock-solid piano and guitar backup by Bruce Rosen. Altogether Firetruck makes dance music that's fresh and fiery, and they have a great time doing it.


Look for the Following on this Page:

Staff Listing, Links & Weekend News, Staff information, and Weekend Program

The 2011 Weekend Staff:

  1. Weekend Callers:

  2. Lynn Ackerson & Tod Whittemore

  3. Sat. & Sun. Music

  4. Randy Miller, Peter Siegel & Bob McQuillen

  5. Firetruck ~

  6. Ethan Hazzard-Watkins, Anna Patton & Bruce Rosen

  7. Friday Night:

  8. Calling: Dudley Laufman & Staff Callers

  9. Music: Sugar River Band: The Orzechowski  Family ~ Jane, Francis, Russell, Sophie & Neil

  10. Retrospective dance session:

  11. The Ralph Page Legacy. If it weren’t for Ralph Page we might not be dancing!

  12. BulletFor the many dancers who know little about him, a chance to learn why he is still important enough to have his own Weekend.

  13. BulletFor those who remember him, a chance to exchange stories and pass them on to the rest.

Ralph Page Dance Legacy Weekend ~ Archival Pages
Archival Material for Past Weekends: 2011

Online Host: New Hampshire Old-Time Country Dance Web Site
Peter Yarensky, Publisher, Designer  & Nearly Everything Else