The Histories of Morris in Britain Conference

Saturday 25th & Sunday 26th March | Cecil Sharp House, London

This specialist conference will focus on morris dancing within the British Isles and its history up to recent times.

As an enduring feature of British culture across more than six centuries, research in, and understanding, appreciation and practice of, our vernacular dance genre is worth celebrating.

Contributions from practitioners and scholars have been invited to this two-day event to share practice, archival research, oral history and local custom. This may be in the form of papers and talks for 30 minute slots to include discussion time, or workshops of 90 minutes, or posters. It is planned that selected papers will be published in a volume of proceedings.

Lunch included.

Organised by The Historical Dance Society in partnership with English Folk Dance and Song Society and The Morris Ring, The Morris Federation, Open Morris.

Saturday Programme

Women in Morris
This Girl Can Morris Dance: Girls’ Carnival Morris Dancing and the Politics of Participation / Lucy Wright
The Women’s Morris Federation – from start to finish / Val Parker
What to Dance? What to Wear? The Repertoire and Costume of Morris Women in the 1970s / Sally Wearing

Morris at Court
Rank Outsider or an Outsider of Rank? Mr Isaac’s Morris Dance / Jennifer Thorp
Morris and Masque at the Jacobean Court / Anne Daye

The Early Revival
Morris Tunes Collected by James Madison Carpenter / Elaine Bradtke
“Pilgrimages to Holy Places”: The Travelling Morrice, 1922-1939 / Matt Simons
“I Ring for the General Dance”: Morris and Englishness in the Work of Conrad Noel / Katie Palmer Heathman

Material Culture
Why Do Morris Dancers Wear White? / Chloe Metcalfe
Materialising Morris Dancing: Tangible Aspects of an Intangible Heritage / David Petts

Sunday Programme

The History of History
Roy Dommett : His Influence on the “Morris” World, Past, Present and Future / John Lewis, Beth Neil, & Jerry West
“How To Approach Reading ‘The History of Morris Dancing’ / John Forrest

The Later Revival
Merrie England, May Day and More: Morris Dances in Cumbria in the Early Twentieth Century / Sue Allan

Consequences of Bringing North West Morris to the South East England : the Chantonbury Ring effect / Sean Goddard & Ed Bassford
A Different Sort of Revival: the Life and Times of the Manley Morris Dancers / Derek Schofield

The Morris Dark Ages
A Comparison of Coconut Dances in Lancashire, Mallorca, Provence & on the 19th Century Stage with Particular Reference to the Tune Known as Rochdale Coconut Dance / Peter Bearon
‘Time to Ring Some Changes’: Bell Ringing and the Decline of Morris Dancing in the Earlier Eighteenth Century / Jameson Wooders
Morris Dancers in the Political and Civic Process / Michael Heaney


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