Make Music Winter: December 21, 2015

Flat Foot Flatbush | Megan Downes, Nick Horner, & the Flat Foot Flatbush Band

Dancers, fiddlers, and pickers will parade down Flatbush Ave playing old-time tunes while flat footing, a form of percussive dancing from Appalachia. Led by dancer Megan Downes and the City Stompers, the parade steps off at 5:00 pm in front of the Barclays Center, with stops along the way to play, dance, and sing.

Never flat footed before? No tap shoes? No problem! Join Megan for a workshop/performance at 4:00 pm across from the Barclays Center (604 Pacific Street). Learn the fundamental steps of this rhythmic Appalachian dance form and practice your moves with the Flat Foot Flatbush string band! The event will end at 6:30pm with a happy hour at Ideya Brooklyn, featuring special bourbon mojitos to keep you warm and music from the Mark Kilianski/Alex Kramer Duo!

Flatfoot Flatbush Logo 1027

Interested in playing? You’re invited to be a part of the Flatfoot Flatbush Band! Guitarists, mandolin player, fiddle players, banjo players and other stringed instrumentalists are welcome. Email Nick Horner by December 18 to receive a copy of the scores, transcribed and prepared by Ken Kolodner.

Flat Foot Flatbush Band Repertoire (click to listen)

Sandy Boys — uptempo and slow

Big Sciota — uptempo and slow

Fly Around My Pretty Little Miss — uptempo and slow

Liza Jane — uptempo and slow

Cluck Old Hen — uptempo

Breaking Up Christmas — on YouTube

Email Nick Horner to receive PDFs of the charts!

Produced in association with the North Flatbush Business Improvement District

604 Pacific St (across from Barclays Center), 4:00pm

Ideya Brooklyn 636 Carlton Ave, 6:30pm

How to Join
All are invited to play, sing, and dance -- no experience necessary! To dance, bring tap shoes or an old pair of sneakers and make your own at the workshop. To play, bring your instrument (email Nick by Dec. 18 to receive the music).

Megan Downes grew up dancing in New York City's traditional Irish music community before moving south to work with one of the best bluegrass bands in the country as a principal dancer with Footworks Percussive Dance Ensemble, directed by Eileen Carson and Mark Schatz, with Jon Glik, Danny Knicely, Matt Olwell and Kristin Andreassen. Megan is now the Artistic Director of City Stompers, calling squares and teaching old-time flatfooting. You may have danced with her over the years at the Augusta Heritage Center, Watermelon Park or Lincoln Center's Midsummer Night Swing. Come party with the City Stompers on the last Wednesday of every month at Jimmy's No. 43 or take a weekly class!

Nick Horner is a vocalist/banjo player/producer/curator originally hailing from the mountains of central Pennsylvania. Dedicated to the enhancement of the New York City folk scene, he regularly programs community and sight specific events through his organization, Porch Stomp, using space such as Governors Island, Flatbush Avenue and his home base, the Haylaught in Bed Stuy, Brooklyn.  He is also an active performer and composer who has played diverse venues ranging from The Bowery Ballroom, Highline Ballroom, and Webster Hall to Shapeshifter Lab and Jalopy Theater with various rock, folk and jazz ensembles.

Alex Kramer is a Fiddler/Banjo player/songwriter active on the New York old time and folk scene.  Born and raised in New York City, he became entrenched in folk music at the age of 16 and has since gone on to play in an eclectic group of bands, ranging from Appalachian old-time and bluegrass, to Tuvan folk, Klezmer, Jazz and Punk. He has lived and rambled all around this country, the Middle East, and Siberia and enjoys making things up as he goes. He currently plays fiddle and banjo in the 5 Mile String Band.

Singer-songwriter, guitarist and banjo player Mark Kilianski offers a fresh take on Bluegrass and Old-Time music with a reverence for their deep traditions. Mark grew up in New Jersey, simultaneously playing guitar in rock bands and studying jazz with some of the best musicians from New York City. Then, while attending Berklee College of Music, he discovered folk music and fiddle tunes, and dove head first into the music of Bill Monroe, Doc Watson, Norman Blake, Dave Macon, and countless others. Temporarily residing in NJ, Mark is hitting the road full time in 2016, picking and singing songs in the great American tradition as a solo artist, and with fiddle/guitar duo Hoot and Holler.

Lucas Chohany is one of the premier old-time and bluegrass guitarists/mandolinists in the Baltimore area. A Harrisburg PA native, he continues to hone his craft through vocal, classical and jazz studies and gigs extensively in the mid-Atlantic region. He frequently performs with old-time virtuosos Ken and Brad Kolodner, bluegrass Fiddler Patrick McAvenue, Irish fiddler extraordinaire Jim Eagan, and most recently internationally renown fiddler April Verch.  Lucas also leads the Baltimore Bluegrass Jam every Tuesday at Liam Flynn's Taphouse in Station North.

The North Flatbush Avenue Business Improvement District (BID) is a 501(c)3 organization. The BID was established in 1986 to increase economic development opportunities and enhance the quality of life for its merchants, residents and property owners along Flatbush Avenue, from Atlantic Avenue to Plaza Street. We provide a clean, safe and retail-diverse environment that is a great destination for entertainment, shopping, working and dining, and support this with community programming, special events and supplemental sanitation services and business support. We look forward to continuing these efforts, and in 2015, we'll welcome improved triangle parks and increased pedestrian safety measures.

M&T Bank is proud to sponsor this year's Flatfoot Flatbush. M&T Bank knows how important it is to support those organizations that make our communities better places to live and work. That's why they offer both their time and resources and encourage others to do the same. They believe that when our community succeeds, we all succeed. See more at

Make Music Winter illustrations by Adam McCauley