two women dance in colorful blue and pink dresses in front of the US capitolNews

Virginia Folklife Awards $35,000 to Five Apprenticeship Teams

The five apprenticeship teams represent artforms with centuries-old roots in Virginia—African American storytelling and music, as well as old time fiddling—as well as the dance and music of Bolivia and Puerto Rico.

Sights & Sounds

The Earl of Indian Valley

Earl White shares his knowledge about music in a “formally informal” jam situation at his old time music camp.


In Gratitude: Roddy Moore

The Virginia Folklife Program at Virginia Humanities would like to express our deep gratitude to Roddy Moore, recently retired director of the Blue Ridge Institute and Museum at Ferrum College …

Sights & Sounds

Mongolian Contortion: The Art of Bending

Many of the traditions on display at the Virginia Folklife Apprenticeship Showcase date back centuries in Virginia, but others are deeply established art forms that are new to this country, …

The Flory Jagoda Sephardic Music FundNews

Schedule and Special Guests Announced for Apprenticeship Showcase

The Virginia Folklife Apprenticeship Showcase at James Monroe’s Highland on May 6 from 12:00 to 5:00pm will welcome Virginia’s 73rd Governor, Ralph Northam, to celebrate the masters and apprentices carrying …


What’s Cooking? Food makes the Showcase special

What makes the Virginia Folklife Apprenticeship Showcase special? The unique stories of the food purveyors who participate in this annual event. This year’s Showcase on Sunday, May 6 at James …

Sights & Sounds

Mandkhai Erdembat and Ella and Emma Chuluunbat

Mongolian contortion has existed since the 12th century as a dance called Uran Nugaralt, which translates to artistic bending. This kind of dance was prominent in the royal palaces of …

Sights & Sounds

Nam Phuong Nguyen and Anh Dien Ky Nguyen

The đàn bầu is a monochord (one-stringed) instrument with a central role in Vietnamese folk music. Popular legend claims the đàn bầu was first played by a blind woman in a …

Sights & Sounds

Sondus Asad Moussa and Sanaa Abdul Jalil

Despite a population of just over 50,000, Harrisonburg is one of the most ethnically and culturally diverse cities in  Virginia. Today, the Harrisonburg–Rockingham County community includes refugees and immigrants from …

Sights & Sounds

Passing on Quechua culture in Virginia

By Violeta Palchik As I chat with Julia Garcia, or Mama Julia as she is known, she lays out the intricate web making up the spiritual culture of indigenous Bolivian …

Sights & Sounds

Baklava as Art

By Theresa Kubasak “I love making baklava… It’s art!” Sondus Moussa sets up her wooden board, positions a warm pan of clarified butter and sniffs a mixture of ground nuts, …


Virginia Folklife Program’s Cape Verdean Musical Exchange to showcase at the Drum and Strum in Warrenton, Virginia.

This November, the Virginia Folklife Program will be returning to Cape Verde, a musically and culturally rich island nature off the coast of West Africa, for another musical exchange.

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