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Global Arts: Cultural Literacy & Heritage

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EUROPEAN INFLUENCES ON AMERICAN MUSIC

Regions: American History
Formats: School Assembly, Cultural Field Trip, After School Program, Community Event, Workshop
Genres: Literary Arts, Music
Levels: Grades 3 to 5, Grades 6 to 8, Grades 9 to 12

Students understand the legacy of American colonists, identifying the changes and the continuity between European music and early American music. With the introduction of early American instruments, such as the fiddle and the dulcimer, teaching artists explore how European musical traditions contributed to American civilization.  By listening to, learning songs from, and playing instruments from early America, students understand the historical foundations of contemporary American music.  In this two-workshop series, students collaborate in pairs or in groups to present their original Broadsides—a traditional American music form that, through song, relates the time’s current events.

Artists

Linda Russell

Linda Russell

Linda Russell uses voice, mountain and hammered dulcimer to explore history through music. She has appeared in schools and festivals nationwide including Lincoln Center and the Carnegie Hall Folk Festival with Tom Paxton and Mike Seeger. Having been the official balladeer at Federal hall National Memorial for 16 years, she has recorded eight albums of traditional and popular music of the 18th and 19th centuries.

Abby Newton

Abby Newton

Abby Newton, a fiddle player and cellist, has been teaching in Symphony Space's CAP program since it began in 1980. Abby has recorded two CDs featuring the cello as a solo instrument in traditional music and has produced and performed on over one hundred folk recordings. She has toured and taught throughout the U.S. and Scotland and has been featured on A Prairie Home Companion and Thistle and Shamrock on National Public Radio.