Performing live Irish music and dance with their descendant American styles, Footworks illuminates the American story of traditions coming from the Old World and meeting others here, resulting in new traditions. Focusing on the music and dance that the Irish brought with them and some which they encountered here, students will learn about Irish contributions to American culture, the effect on the development of American cultural expressions, and the powerful role the Irish played in the shaping of North Carolina and the United States. The program varies for different grade levels. Elementary school: focus on the Irish cultural narrative; middle school: focus on the social significance of Irish immigration to the United States; high school: focus on early Irish immigration to America, why it began, and some of the effects of their settlement in the United States. Curriculum Connections: Social Studies, American History, North Carolina History, Music, Dance.
Footworks is internationally renowned for its theater, festival, and Arts-In-Education performances. Having toured internationally since 1979, Footworks brings a wealth of experience and skill to programming in North Carolina schools. The company is dedicated to teaching and working with youth and is recognized for over 38 years in Arts-In-Education. Founding Director Eileen Carson Schatz is a National Endowment for the Arts Choreography Fellow and a Certified Teaching Artist. Footworks remains true to traditional American music and percussive dance, and presents connected roots and branches from many cultures. All of Footworks' programming is a celebration of the cultural diversity found in the United States.