Photo courtesy of Eddie Swimmer.
Types of Artistry
Dancer, dance caller, storyteller, ballad singer
Marshall, NC (Madison County)
A native of eastern North Carolina, where his family has danced and played music for generations, Rodney Sutton is a prominent and highly respected representative of the dance and music traditions of his home state. Sutton is particularly known for his expertise in traditional mountain dance. He is adept at both flatfooting and clogging, and is also in demand as a dance caller. In recent years, Rodney has expanded his presentations to include both storytelling and ballad singing.
Sutton was an early member of the Green Grass Cloggers, and today is part of the Road Team Reunion group, who have danced in recent years at the Smithsonian Folklife Festival, the Philadelphia Folk Festival, the Lake Eden Arts Festival (LEAF), the Appalachian Stringband Music Festival, and MerleFest. Sutton is also a co-founder of the Fiddle Puppets, now known as Footworks, a traditionally based dance team that has toured around the world.
Rodney Sutton has traveled across the United States and Canada and throughout the British Isles performing, teaching, and calling dances. He has taught traditional dance in western North Carolina schools through the Visiting Artist Program, and is a regular instructor at such camps as the Swannanoa Gathering at Warren Wilson College in North Carolina, Augusta Heritage Center programs in West Virginia, and Ashokan Fiddle and Dance Camps in New York.
Rodney Sutton is available for festival performances, programs for children, and school performances, and is also available to call traditional square and contra dances for weddings and gatherings of all kinds. His programs include "Get Your Kicks Clogging" classes and "Stepping up to the Challenge" workshops for conferences and business retreats. Rodney prides himself on his ability to teach anyone how to clog.