Organization Member

Contact Information

(212) 222-2295, (646) 373-8236, 6463738236
[email protected]

Providence, Rhode Island

Type of Organization

Performing Ensemble


Henry Chapin is a native New Yorker. He grew up in Classical music, at the Metropolitan Opera and Carnegie Hall, thanks to his parents. Henry spent summers near Pinewoods Camp, in Plymouth, Massachusetts, summer home of the Country Dance and Song Society of America. There, he started learning play-party games and traditional British Isles and American social dancing at 8 years old. He credits much of his knowledge of Traditional Folk music and Early music to having had his first summer job at Pinewoods, soaking it all in as a teenager.

Henry has a BA in Music Composition and Theory, and an MA in Arts Administration from Columbia University. Henry has taught music and has been a Teaching Artist through arts-in-education residencies, both in Vermont and in New York state. He has performed in, and stage directed numerous seasonal "Revels" productions, in Massachusetts and California as well as in New York City. His current “Revels” piece is “Christmas at Sea,” at the South Street Seaport. He is a Bouwerie Boys Morris dancer, and directs the Hudson River Mummers.

When he is not working to restore the almost-lost art of singing to New York City school communities, Henry calls traditional American Family dances with the Carnegie Hill Band and the Hell’s Kitchen Cookers. Through a CDSS Outreach grant, Henry and the Hell’s Kitchen cookers are about to start their third year of Family Dances at the 92nd Street Y’s Harkness Dance Center.

Henry feely admits he doesn’t do much without the invaluable teamwork of his partner Betsy. Recently, they have created an Adult/Teacher/Parent/Grandparent Guitar institute, held at The Children’s Learning Center of Morningside Heights, teaching teachers, parents and grandparents, modeling uses of Traditional American Folksong in classrooms and homes.

Henry and Betsy spend summers on Prince Edward Island, where they are co-founders of the Rock Barra Artist Retreat. Henry plays bass in the jazz quartet Locustreet, and occasionally herds his musician friends into a Rhythm and Blues revue called Uncle Henry’s Basement.

Currently Henry is appearing with the Vanaver Caravan, playing bass in “Turn, Turn, Turn,” a two-act celebration of the life of Pete and Toshi Seeger in music and dance.



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