Please join us on the evening of Wednesday, December 12 for the first Folklife Apprenticeship Showcase, featuring master old-time fiddler Doug Van Gundy with apprentice fiddler Annie Stroud, and master salt rising bread bakers Jenny Bardwell and Susan Brown with apprentice baker Amy Dawson.
2018 Master Artist & Apprentice Feature: John Morris & Jen Iskow, Old-Time Fiddling and Stories of Clay County
John D. Morris of Ivydale is leading an apprenticeship on old-time fiddling, focusing on the traditions of Clay County, with Jen Iskow of Thomas. The first in a series featuring our five 2018 Folklife Apprentice Pairs.
St. Albans Artisan Has Been Making Neon Signs By Hand For Five Decades: A Profile of James L. Day
James L. Day of Day Sign Company in St. Albans has been making neon signs for five decades and is one of the last hand tube benders in West Virginia’s Kanawha Valley. We worked with West Virginia Public Broadcasting to produce a radio & video mini-documentary about Day for Inside Appalachia’s Road Trip episode.
West Virginia Folklife at New Story in Lewisburg, May 31-June 1
This spring, the West Virginia Folklife Program is partnering with the WV Community Development Hub‘s New Story to showcase our West Virginia Folklife Apprenticeship Program! Learn more about our inaugural apprenticeship program– which supports master traditional artists and their apprentices in a year-long in-depth apprenticeship– here. On May 31- June 1 at the State Fairgrounds in…
Textile Artist Susan Feller on the McDonald Sisters of Gilmer County
Words and photos by Susan Feller My upbringing in the 1950s and 60s rural Appalachians, where I earned Girl Scout badges and was taught handwork by generations of women, were the experiences that influenced my craft work and historical research. When I learned how to pull wool fabric loops through a loose weave backing– rug…
The State Folklorist’s Notebook: A Visit with Frank & Jane George
The State Folklorist’s Notebook is a regular column written by state folklorist Emily Hilliard for Goldenseal Magazine. This article appears in the Spring 2018 issue, a tribute to late West Virginia old-time musician Frank George. It was a chilly afternoon in April 2016 when I made the trip to Walton for an interview with Frank and Jane…
West Virginia Folklife 2017 Activities Report
What has the West Virginia Folklife Program done lately? Learn about our 2017 media, activities, and programs.
Announcing Our 2017-2018 Master Artists & Apprentices!
We are thrilled to announce our first class of master artist and apprentice pairs in the West Virginia Folklife Apprenticeship Program.
McArts and West Virginia Folklife Present July 8 Concert with Elaine Purkey in Kimball
On the evening of Saturday, July 8, McArts, a McDowell County Fine Arts Organization, and The West Virginia Folklife Program, a project of the West Virginia Humanities Council, will present a concert with West Virginia activist songwriter and musician Elaine Purkey. The 7:00 p.m. event will be held at Ya’sou Greek Restaurant at 138 Main St. in Kimball and is free and open to the public.
West Virginia Folklife Awarded NEA Grant to Support Statewide Folklife Apprenticeship Program
We are thrilled to announce that we have been awarded a $35,000 grant by the National Endowment for the Arts to support the new West Virginia Folklife Apprenticeship Program. This Art Works grant is among the $82 million that NEA Chairman Jane Chu has approved to fund local arts projects across the country in the…
Field Notes: Doris Fields aka “Lady D”
Doris A. Fields, aka Lady D, known as “West Virginia’s First Lady of Soul” is an R&B, soul, and blues musician and songwriter living in Beckley. She is the founder and organizer of West Virginia’s Simply Jazz and Blues Festival and previously hosted the weekly Simply Jazz and Blues radio show on Groovy94 in Beckley. In 2008, Fields’ original song “Go Higher” won an online contest sponsored by the Obama Music Arts and Entertainment Group. She performed the song as a headliner at the Obama for Change Inauguration Ball with President Obama and the First Lady Michelle Obama in attendance.
“You can’t have hurt anything, it can always be repaired!”: Jim Costa in Concert
On January 25, we hosted our second West Virginia Folklife Program concert at the West Virginia Humanities Council, with a performance by old-time musician and collector Jim Costa, and a presentation by folklorist Zoe van Buren, who worked with Costa to document his collection.