In the News: Magazine Interview for ‘eta Kitto

Google translate to the rescue!


-You have a degree in Ethnochoreology. But, what is this?
Ethnochoreology is the name for the study of anthropology of dance. Ethnochoreologists study how dance and human culture are related.
-What are you doing around Europe?
I am studying different forms of sword dancing in europe. Across the European continent there is a form of dance that appears nowhere else. Known as Hilt-and-Point sword dances, these radically varying traditions are linked by symbols such as stars, sword, circles and similar dance moves. I seek to understand why these dances, which at first seem unrelated, have developed in parallel and share common symbols. By observing and dancing with groups of dancers from many different traditions I hope to document as well as learn these dances
-What is your trip plan?
I started in France, and then Italy. I was in basque country for about 3 weeks and then in Spain. I will go to England (where I will learn to make swords as well as dance) Ireland, Scotland, Croatia, Georgia, Germany, and Turkey.
You have been in Eibar. How long? I was in Eibar for about 3 weeks, on two separate periods of time.
-What do you think about your stay in Eibar? How is the people? And Kezka´s dancers? Where did you live in Eibar?
The dancer of Kezka were amazingly generous, welcoming and helpful. They helped me learn all about the dancing and its history. They also gave me a place to stay and food to eat. I am so grateful for their help and friendship! I hope to come back soon!
-Where did you get your passion for sword dances?
I first started sword dancing when i was 7 or 8. My mother danced a kind of English sword dancing and when I was a child I started dancing too! I have danced with several teams and started 2 sword teams. I then got a grant to travel and study this dancing, which is how I am in Europe now.
-What do you think about Basque sword dances?
Basque sword dancing is very impressive and a lot of fun to watch! It is also interesting because certain dance movements are connected to other dances I have seen in other places. For example, the trokeo-dantza are very similar to English Morris dancing. Other figures in the sword dance are almost the same as italian sword. Even with these similarities, the basque sword dancing is very unique and beautiful!
-What is the purpose of your investigation? I hope to write a book or articles when I complete this trip! I may also go to graduate school for a masters or doctorate degree.


About Jeremy Carter-Gordon

My blog of a year studying point-and-hilt sword dancing on a Watson Fellowship. Enjoy reading, tell me your thoughts and leave me a comment, or visit my website at
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