Folk & Traditional Arts

Features

Tamejavi is not a word you will find in any English dictionary—or for that matter, a dictionary in any language—but it is a word full of meaning for many in...
Washington, DC Nick Spitzer interviews Beyle Schaechter-Gottesman at the 2005 NEA National Heritage Fellows concert. Photo by Michael G. Stewart In 2005, Beyle Schaechter-Gottesman received an NEA National Heritage Fellowship for her work and mastery as a Yiddish singer, poet, and songwriter. In...
The Wasco Nation of the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs, Oregon, has a legend about how their baskets got their distinctive designs. As basketweaver Pat Courtney Gold tells it, "A...
Washington, DC Afro-Cuban drumming, Bharatanatyam Indian dancing, and Bluegrass music are just a few of the folk and traditional arts that will take center stage in our live webcast of the NEA National Heritage Fellowships Concert tonight, September 24, from 8:00 pm-10:00 pm EDT. Emceed by American...
Washington, DC It is all too appropriate that folklorist Judith McCulloh is receiving an NEA National Heritage Fellowship this year---she was on the original panel back in 1981 that recommended that the NEA begin awarding the fellowships! And even more appropriate that she is receiving the Bess...
Washington, DC 2010 NEA National Heritage Fellow Mary Jackson. Photo courtesy of the artist Having recently visited the Grass Roots exhibition at the National Museum of African Art , I learned my first very important lesson about Google: never search for an image of something that you can see in...
Washington, DC Like many an immigrant, 2010 NEA National Heritage Fellow Mike Rafferty came to the United States for a better life. But when he came from East Galway, Ireland, he brought something important with him: his flute. Although he didn't play for many years after arriving in this...
St. Paul, Minnesota All photos courtesy Hmong Cultural Center, St. Paul, Minnesota A student performs on the qeej, a tradtional Hmong instrument. We recently spoke with Txongpao Lee, director of the Hmong Cultural Center of Minnesota. Located in St. Paul, the Center serves the 52,000 Hmong (...
Aerial shot of the crowd at the Latino festival
Fifty-five mallets beat against fifty-five drums. Boom. Clack. Clack. Ba-da-da-da-dah, boom. Can you hear that? Da-da-da-DA-DA-DA. Boom! An occasional collective chant, " Batala !" rises up from the sea of...
December 16, 2009 Washington, DC As noted in an earlier post, Bess Lomax Hawes (1921-2009) was a fierce advocate for the folk & traditional arts, bringing a national focus to how *art works* at the local level. To cap off our celebration of the life and work of Ms. Hawes, we have posted two...

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