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Activity Provided By:

The New School

The Folk Process: American Folk Music in the 20th and 21st Centuries

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Overview / Abstract:

Try to define "Folk Music" and you will find as many answers as there are questions. Is Folk Music defined by its sound? Its instrumentation? Or is it rather a process by which we share, learn, and participate in music? This class will focus on the latter path of investigation, exploring the oral traditions of American folk music, tracing themes, narratives, rhythms and melodies from the early 20th century to the present. Folk music creates the opportunity for every listener to become a performer and for every performer to become a composer and interpreter. We will learn traditional American folk songs together, and learn their histories and their origins. We will explore the oral tradition of sharing music and songs from our own backgrounds, and we will explore contemporary performance culture through the lens of the folk process, examining our relationships to the music we listen to as individuals, and as a community.
There will be regular performance opportunities for vocalists and instrumentalists, with a focus on learning, singing and creating songs as a class. Familiarity with Western music notation is not required.


Dec 26, 2020


Education (Higher Ed) , Education (K-12)


Live / Seminar



Keywords / Search Terms

The New School Seminar CE CME

LIVE Activity Location Details


Mannes College

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