TAADA is a nonprofit organization dedicated to encouraging the practice and promotion of traditional, historical and folk dance, with special emphasis on American and English traditions.
Our primary purpose is to teach dance (and promote dance teaching and knowledge) by facilitating dancing opportunities for the greater Austin Metropolitan Area dance community.
Meet the 2018 Board
Pamela Weems (President)
My love of dancing began when as a child I traveled with my family to other countries and experienced the music and language of other cultures. I have enjoyed International, Israeli, Contra, and English Country dancing. In the past five years I have renewed my interest in piano and, when I am not on the dance floor, you will find me at the keyboard making a joyful noise with other musicians for dancers' pleasure. Both retired teachers, my husband Craig and I enjoy traveling and participating in dance and music workshops.
Bert Godkin (Vice President)
Marie Edwards brought me to contra dance on a Wednesday night at Hancock Rec Center in 1991, and I liked it immediately. I learned to square dance at age 9 in third grade. I enjoy going to Houston and Dallas for the regional contra dances. I hope I can help pass on this activity to younger people to enjoy.
Gail Woods (Secretary)I started dancing contra about five years ago. I've found it to be a great community and a great way to learn to dance.
Brian McMinn (Treasurer)
I tried a beginner’s class in a traditional dance form several decades ago and quit the first "lesson" when the instructor demonstrated something that looked like a video on fast forward and then directed the group to repeat it. Finding contra, where people described it as "if you're having fun you're doing it right," gave me an entry point I could actually use.
Effi Brandenburg (At-Large)
I have been dancing approximately 28 years. My favorite memories are at Jimmy Drury's dance hall (Pinewoods) in Bastrop, which unfortunately burnt to the ground. I love all types of dancing - international, square, contra, English, swing - the welcoming, wholesome, intergenerational community keeps me coming back for another twirl.
Melinda Carter (At-Large)
I started contra dancing in 1989 when my sister, an Austinite, invited me to an outdoor informal dance in Austin. It was so much fun and such a good cardio workout for me! I love contra dancing because where else can you be in the arms of a different man every few minutes without being hit on, no alcohol, no smoking!! Honestly, contra dancers are so welcoming and fun that I'm glad I continued all these years!
Susie Nagel (At-Large)
I count myself very lucky to have been dancing most of my life. I have experienced many different dance styles but contra is my favorite, English is a close second. My husband and son are both dancers and fiddle players who often play for local dances. We enjoy traveling as a family to dance camps and music festivals whenever possible. I worked in the graphics and printing industry for 15 years and help our dance community with various flyer and t-shirt designs.
Nana Lopez (At-Large)
I have been dancing my whole life and my favorite type of dance is Contra which I discovered in 1991. Contra is my favorite due to its inclusivity, ease of learning and fact that a partner is not needed. I dance other dances, with Swing and Zydeco being close seconds. I had organized and run the Austin First Friday Contra Dance from 2004-2010 then moved to Florida for a while. Now I am back after spending a bit of time organizing and calling dances in the Florida Keys and a while as a Dance Gypsy traveling the East and Northeast of the US finding dance communities and spending time with many of them. I would like to help build up the dance community in the Austin area so that more people can experience the joy I have found through dance.
May Plumb (At-Large)
I've been contra dancing as long as I can remember (my family started dancing regularly when I was about 5 years old). I grew up dancing in Midcoast Maine, where my family helps organize the DownEast Country Dance Festival. I recently moved to Austin for graduate school, and I was overjoyed to find an active contra community here. I enjoy many types of dance, but I love contra for it's inclusivity and accessbility - and the lovely music!