Edwin Austin

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Edwin G. Austin, Jr. originally from Laguna Beach, California, is an Associate Professor of Dance at Brigham Young University. He was Artistic Director of the BYU International Folk Dance Ensemble (1985-2011), founded the Cougar Clogging Classic, a dance camp he directed for 30 years and Folk Dance for Youth. He directs, choreographs and re-stages cultural dance forms, adjudicates cultural dance performance, and is a Master Teacher of international dance forms. His creative works have been featured on television, and in concert and festival performances in more than 35 countries.

He is presently serving as Immediate Past President of the National Folk Organization of the United States (NFO) and is also researching the Taualuga, an ancient dance ritual found in the Polynesian islands of Samoa and among diaspora communities in Australia, New Zealand, and the United States. He is a past board member of Conseil International des Organisations de Festivals de Folklore et d’Arts Traditionnels (CIOFF), American Sector.

Special honors, recognitions, and accomplishments include: Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod, Adjudicator, Wales (2007-present); USA, Clogging Hall of Fame (2010); Ambassador’s Award for Cultural Diplomacy, Hungary (2008); Festival de Confolens 50th Anniversary, France (2007); Drummondville Festival Mondial des Cultures 25th Anniversary, Canada (2006); Research and Creativity Award, BYU (2002); Winter IOlympic Games Opening Ceremonies, USA (2002); Light of the World, Choreographer, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (2002); Guangzhou Academy of Dance 40th Anniversary Concert, Master Teacher and Choreographer, PRC (1999); Utah Pioneer Sesquicentennial Celebration, Artistic Director, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (1997); and the Summer Olympic Games Opening Ceremonies (1988) Korea.

Smartsheet Reports Research Interests: Cultural Representation; Adaptation, modification, and innovation; Welsh Step Dance and Folk Dance fieldwork; Understanding the Samoan Taualuga Recent Projects: National Folk Organization of the United States, President; Kentucky Dance Institute, International Folk Dance Instructor; Various Folk Dance Workshops

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