About BIDA

BIDA is a Boston-area group dedicated to promoting involvement in traditional dance and connecting generations by:

BIDA was formed in the fall of 2008 in an effort to fill a niche not served by otherdance groups in the area. While Boston had and still has a rich and vibrant traditional dance scene, there was not as much intergenerational interaction as there could be in many of the Boston dance communities. BIDA's founders hoped to create an organization which would strengthen community ties and provide opportunities for dancers, musicians, callers, and dance organizers to share knowledge and energy between generations.

History of BIDA

To kickstart the community focus of its events, BIDA began by organizing potlucks which combined music and dance with conversations about dance communities, what different people hoped to find in a dance community, and what BIDA could do toserve their needs. These conversations shaped the goals that BIDA strives to promote with every event.

BIDA's first public contra dance was held in February of 2009, at the Park Ave. Congregational Church in Arlington. The attendance and energy at this event showed that the Boston community was indeed ready to welcome and support an additional dance group. While the PACC is a very nice venue, one of BIDA’s goals is to hold dances in a hall that is easily accessible by public transportation. After an extensive search, BIDA settled in the Masonic Hall in Cambridge, which we are thrilled to call home. In addition to having a large stage, a great floor, and a disco ball, this hall is less than a block from the Porter Square T station! BIDA now runs a bimonthly dance at the Masonic Hall on first and third Sundays, as well as parties, jam sessions, workshops, and special event dances at various locations. To keep up-to-date on BIDA events, please join our mailing list or Facebook group.

As BIDA's reputation and community continue to grow, we have worked with nationally-recognized callers and musicians as mentors to our local up-and-coming performers. BIDA continues to hold parties with themes ranging from contra tune jams to swing dance lessons, and has hosted and begun to plan further workshops for musicians, dancers, and callers. We encourage you to join us at our events and to get involved in our organization! For more information, please email bida@bidadance.org.

Board Members and Roles


Harris Bard Lapiroff (Caller Booking)

Jeff Kaufman (Beantown Stomp, Sound Booking, Open Bands)

Julie Vallimont (Musician Booking)

Marcus Graly (Treasurer), no photo

Persis Thorndike (Volunteer Coordinator, Secretary)

Rachel Sensenig (Intraboard Coordinator)

Sarah Hirsch (Outreach Coordinator)

Former Board Members

Eric McDonald (2008-2009), no photo

Dave Casserly (2008-2011)

Chris Weiler (2009-2011), no photo

Koren Wake (2009-2011)

Martha Friedman (2009-2012), no photo

Daniel Friedman (2009-2015)

Alex Krogh-Grabbe (2010-2012)

Sally Bown (2011-2012), no photo

Andrew Stout (2011-2013)

Michael Bergman (2011-2014)

Max Newman (2012), no photo

Heather Carmichael (2012), no photo

Ben Sachs Hamilton (2012-2013)

Audrey Knuth (2013-2015)

Amy Englesberg (2013-2014)

Kathleen Fownes (2014)

Sam Auciello (2014-2016)

Daniel Ley (2014-2016)

Ryan McLoughlin (2016-2017), no photo

Angela DeCarlis (?-2018)

Cecile Leroy (?-2018)

Zoe Madonna (?-2019)

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