• A young man kisses a woman while her husband lurks in the shadows with a sword July 2024 Song of the Month

    Harry Tuft introduces “Matty Groves,” an old ballad of an unfaithful wife who shares a sad fate with her lover when they are caught by her returning husband. The song may trace its roots as far back as the fifteenth century.

  • A Musician's Guide to Contra Choreography by Andrew VanNorstrand New in the store!

    A Musician’s Guide to Contra Choreography

    Andrew VanNorstrand, guitarist and fiddler from the beloved contra dance band Great Bear, brings his insight from more than 18 years of playing to this new booklet. Useful for both new and veteran musicians, A Musician’s Guide to Contra Choreography dives into exactly how to play for contra dances, including connecting with dancers, working with callers, and taking your playing from ordinary to extraordinary (as anyone who has danced to Andrew’s playing can attest!).

    Find it in the CDSS Store as a physical booklet or a downloadable PDF.

  • Tree of Life quilt June 2024 Song of the Month

    Mara Levine introduces “Tree of Life” by Eric Peltoniemi. The song comes from the 1983 musical theater production Plain Hearts: Songs and Stories of Midwestern Prairie Women by Lance Belville, and most of the lyrics are the names of quilt block patterns.

  • From the Mic with Rick Mohr From the Mic Episode 24: Rick Mohr

    This episode of From the Mic features Rick Mohr. Rick’s calling and choreography have delighted dancers for decades, from local barn dances to dance weeks and weekends across North America. He says “My goal is always to make a fantastic experience for the dancers, so they really feel the joy of dance and music and community. That means planning programs that really shine, practicing clear calls and walkthroughs in advance, and creating a fun welcoming vibe.”

  • Charmaine Slaven holding a guitar Welcome New Director of Development!

    We are thrilled to announce the new CDSS Director of Development, Charmaine Slaven!

    Read More

  • Antique photo of Seth Davy, a bearded man entertaining children with wooden puppets. May 2024 Song of the Month

    Dave Para introduces “Seth Davy” by Glyn Hughes, also known as “Come Day, Go Day” or “Whiskey on a Sunday.” Seth Davy was a Jamaican sailor who entertained children on the streets of Liverpool around the turn of the 20th century.

  • From the Mic with Cis Hinkle From the Mic Episode 23: Cis Hinkle

    The latest guest on From the Mic is Cis Hinkle. Cis has delighted contra and square dancers since 1985 with her skilled teaching, welcoming manner, playful enthusiasm and masterful selection of dances. She talks with Mary about the first time she stumbled into a contra dance in her native Atlanta; shares how she overcame stage fright and began calling all over the world; and brings us right up to her most recent pursuit, learning to call modern western squares.

  • From the Mic with David Millstone From the Mic Episode 22: David Millstone

    Mary’s guest on this episode of From the Mic is David Millstone. David started contra dancing with Dudley Laufman in the early 1970s and has been calling dances for forty-five years: contras old and new, squares from different regional traditions, English country dances, and plenty of family-friendly events.

  • A circle of dancers whirling around Affiliate renewals are now open!

    Your current Affiliate Membership, insurance, and 501c3 status will expire on May 1st, so remember to renew as soon as possible. Renew now, or see instructions for renewing as an Affiliate.

  • St. Catherine's Church in Towersey among autumn leaves April 2024 Song of the Month

    Sara Grey presents “Cobweb of Dreams” by Joy Masefield and Leon Rosselson. This love song is not dedicated to a person—it’s to the town of Towersey, Oxfordshire, England.

  • CDSS News, Spring 2024 Spring 2024 CDSS News

    The Spring 2024 issue of CDSS News has sprung! Give a hand to the bands that sparked the contra revival; try a new dance with Princess Katie; take a folk dance tour through the Czech Republic; and much more.

  • A young camper sweeps the dock over a lake Summer Camp Job Opportunities

    We are in search of several camp staff for summer 2024. Please check the Jobs page for details on the positions and how to apply.