Yvonne Hunt has been teaching and researching Greek dances for more than 40 years, working with Father Homer Dimopoulos to establish the dance program at St. Demetrios Church (Seattle) in 1974. During that time the “Paniyiri” dance group was formed under her direction and represented the Seattle Greek community at many functions throughout the state and British Columbia, Canada. Yvonne also taught Greek dances in the University of Washington dance department in 1975-76 and 1978-79, as well as Greek and other Balkan dances at the Experimental College there from 1972-1979.
Yvonne’s first research trip to Greece was made in 1975 (one month), returning there again in 1978 for a month and finally moving there in 1979 for fourteen years. During seven of those years she was the assistant to the director, Simon Karas, at the Society for the Dissemination of National Music. While living in Greece, she taught at the Hellenic American Union (6 years), the Athens Centre (11 years), the Tsiamoulis Elementary School (11 years), the University of LaVerne (Athens campus, 3 years), and various dance groups and cultural societies. In addition to the many teaching positions she was also conducting dance research throughout the country, from the southernmost islands to the northernmost prefectures. She is still an associate researcher at the Centre for Asia Minor Studies in Athens.
The first summer dance seminar in Greece (Sitia) was organized by dancers from Norway and France in 1981, and Yvonne was invited to be the sole instructor. In the ensuing years she organized, directed and taught at summer seminars throughout the country, and has been conducting carnival seminars in the Serres region since 2001. She has also taught seminars throughout Europe, the US and Canada. Yvonne was on the organizing staff of the IOFA (ΔΟΛΤ) conferences in Larissa from 1987-1990, was a guest lecturer at Dora Stratou Theatre on more than one occasion, and had the privilege of presenting her work with Flambouro, Serres, both at a seminar there and at the theatre premier opening in 1989.
Since Yvonne’s return to the states in 1993, she has directed the dance program at Assumption Church in Seattle, has instructed the prize-winning college/adult group, Akrites, at St. Demetrios Church as well as being the resource person for the other dance directors there, and has directed several groups performing at FDF, as well as judging the competitions there. Concurrently she taught classes both in Greek dance and the Modern Greek language at local community colleges, St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church and several other venues. Classes in dance, language and Greek culture are still being taught by her.
Yvonne Hunt has presented papers and appeared on panels at many international conferences and symposia in Europe and America. Her publications include both English and Greek versions of the book, Traditional Dance in Greek Culture, Ο Παραδοσιακός Χορός στον Ελληνικό Πολιτισμό (1996), articles in both Greek and international periodicals and journals, the CD, Zourna Masters of Flambouro (with Christos Govetas and Neal Sandler, 1998), as well as liner notes for several other CD recordings of Greek music. Her book, A Nest of Gold/Μια Φωλιά από Χρυσάφι (2015), on the dances and traditional music and customs of the Serres region of Macedonia, is published by the Kyklos Cultural Society of Thessaloniki.
• “Ottoman Remnants in the Music/Dance Repertoire of the Indigenous (Native) Population of the Serres Prefecture of Eastern Macedonia”, unpublished paper presented at University of Athens, 2010.
• “Crossing the Border: the Case of the Zurnaci-Tapan Ensembles of Bulgaria and the Daoulia of the Serres Prefecture of Greece”, pp 153-158 in Struga Musical Autumn, COKOM. Skopje, 2009.
• “Kechekia/Köçek–Cross-dressing and Two Related(?) Traditions”, pp 137-142, Halk Kültürü’ nde Giyim-Kuşam ve Süslenme Uluslar Arası Sempozyumu Bildirileri, Eskişehir Osmangazi Üniversitesi, Eskişehir 2008.
• “Yunanistan, Serres, Flambouro Olayı: Lazarina Ritüeli’ nin Yeniden Ele lınması/Ortaya Çıkarılması”, pp 289-295, Halk Kütürperini Koruma-Yaşatma ve Geleceğe Aktarma Uluslararası Sempozyumu Bildirileri, Motif Vakfı Yayınları No: 6, Istanbul 2007.
• “Reconstructing/Reviving the Lazarina Ritual: the Case of Flambouro, Serres, Greece”, pp 296-301, Halk Kütürperini Koruma-Yaşatma ve Geleceğe Aktarma Uluslararası Sempozyumu Bildirileri, Motif Vakfı Yayınları No: 6, Istanbul 2007.
• Ο Παραδοσιακός Χορός στον Ελληνικό πολιτισμό, Πολιτιστικός Σύλλογος Σκοτούσσας Σερρών, Σέρρες, 2005.
• “Traditional Dance in Greece”, pp 139-143 in The Anthropology of East Europe Review, Vol. 22, No. 1, Spring 2004.
• “The Ababas: a Rom ritual”, pp 251-270, Οι Ρομά στην Ελλάδα, Greek Society for Ethnology, Athens, 2002.
• “Yiftos, Tsinganos: A Note on Greek Terminology”, pp 71-78, Journal of the Gypsy Lore Society, Gypsy Lore Society, Vol. 9, No. 1, February, 1999.
• “One Dance, Many Styles”, pp 97, 98, Dance, Style, Youth, Identities, Proceedings of the 19th Symposium of the International Council for Traditional Music Study Group on Ethnochoreology, Institute of Folk Culture, Straznice, Czech Republic, 1998.
• “Traditional Dance in Greek Culture”, pp 26, 27, Greek American, Vol. 3, Issue 3, Pittsburgh, March 1997.
• “Ta Kechekia—A Greek Gypsy Carnival Event”, pp 97-103, Dance Ritual and Music, Proceedings of the 18th Symposium of the ICTM Study Group on Ethnochoreology, Warsaw, 1995
• “Gypsies in Greece, an Annotated Bibliography”, Modern Greek Society: A Social Science Newsletter, Modern Greek Studies Association, Vol. XXI, Providence, 1993.
• Karpathos commentary, pp 144-148, Vanishing Greece, Conran Octopus Limited, London, 1991.
• “The Dance of the Tzamala of Flambouro, Serres”, pp 144-147, Proceedings of the Fourth World Conference on Traditional Dance, Larissa, 1990.
• “3rd World Conference on Folk Dance: Folk Dance in Education”, pp 43-35, Dance Research Journal, Congress on Research in Dance (CORD), Honolulu and New York, Fall 1989.
• “The Other Olympos”, pp 24-27, The Athenian, The Athenian Press Ltd., Athens, June 1987.
• “Masks and Mirth Mark Carnival in Rural Macedonia”, pp 19-21, The Athenian, Drossoula Elliot & Co., E.E., Athens, February 1987.
In addition to the above, a CD, “Zourna Masters of Flambouro”, was produced along with Neal Sandler and Christos Govetas in 1999. Research notes and English language notes have been done on “Σίρις-Σκοποί και Χοροί των Σερρών” (2000) and on “Παραδοσιακοί χοροί ντόπιων κατοίκων Ν. Σερρών” as well as other CD’s.
• “Ottoman Remnants in the Music/Dance Repertoire of the Indigenous (Native) Population of the Serres Prefecture of Eastern Macedonia”, Symposium of the Ottoman Past in the Balkan Present, Athens University, October 2010.
• “Crossing the Border: the Case of the Zurnaci-Tapan Ensembles of Bulgaria and the Daoulia of the Serres Prefecture of Greece”, Symposium of ICTM Study Group for Music and Dance in Southeastern Europe, Struga, FYROM, 4-8 September 2008.
• “Theatre or Ritual”, Motif Symposium, Yeditepe University, Istanbul, December 2008.
• “Dance on the Knees”, Gypsy Lore Society Annual Meeting, Tucson, Arizona, June 2006.
• “Reconstructing/Reviving the Lazarina Ritual: the case of Flambouro, Serres, Greece”, Symposium at Kocaeli University, Izmit, Turkey, December 2005.
• “One Dance, Many Styles”, 19th Symposium of the ICTM Study Group on Ethnochoreology, Trest, Czech Republic, August 1996.
• “Ta Kechekia—A Greek Gypsy Carnival Event”, 18th Symposium of the ICTM Study Group on Ethnochoreology, Skierniewice, Poland, August 1994.
• “Traditional Carnival Customs in Two Greek Gypsy Villages”, Gypsy Lore Society Annual Meeting, Los Angeles, CA, April 1994.
• “The Dance of the Tzamala of Flambouro, Serres”, IOFA 4th World Conference on Folk Dance, Larissa, Greece, May 1990.
• “Dance Education in Traditional and Modern Societies”, with D. Gousios, IOFA 3rd World Conference on Folk Dance, Larissa, Greece, May 1989.
• “The Dance in Kythnos”, Dora Stratou Educational Series, Athens, Greece, 1988.
• “Village Dances in the Difficult Process of Change in Olympos, Karpathos”, IOFA 1st World Conference on Folk Dance, Larissa, Greece, July 1987.