Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Dance Away

English folk dances demonstrated and captured on a Kinora, a home movie camera which effectively produced a flicker book reel which could then be viewed by cranking a handle.

The dancers are Maud Karpeles, her sister Helen, Cecil Sharp and (with the moustache) George Butterworth. Sharp was the driving force behind the folk song and dance revival of the Edwardian age, travelling the country collecting and preserving a dying tradition. The Karpeles sisters were frequent collaborators, especially Maud, who became the executor of Sharp's work after his death in 1924.

George Butterworth is one of the greatest classical composers Britain has ever produced. Two years after this joyful film was made WW1 broke out; two years later George was killed by a German sniper.

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