Watson Fellow 2011-2012 The Star of Swords: European Sword Dancing and Culture 

I spent a year in Europe on a Thomas J. Watson Fellowship  where I studied, observed, and performed with 30 groups from eight countries and learned how to craft rapper swords for dance. As one of the first outsiders to dance in some of these groups, I gained unique perspective into the culture, history, and choreography of these dances, blogging about it here. I am available to teach workshops or give lectures on these dances, check out my sword dance teaching here! To learn more about what I’m doing now, check out my European Sword Dance Documentation Project

The Vermont Harmony Project 2008-2011

Selected as a Bard Trustee Leader-Scholar, I founded and led the The Vermont Harmony Project with Lauren Bruenig. The project worked to build cross-cultural understanding through music by helping to share, preserve and celebrate the singing traditions of immigrants in Vermont. We interviewed immigrants in Vermont abut the role music plays in their lives to promote a better understanding of how people interact with music in different cultures. We worked to create a lasting audio archive of both the vocal singing traditions and the experiences of first-generation immigrants that will serve as a resource for generations to come. Music is a constructive, non-confrontational way of bridging cultural divides and creating harmony in music and community.