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The Festival: Theater of Action

Eight years ago the Smithsonian started the annual summer Festival of American Folklife involving live performers. They demonstrated to visitors on the Mall that a museum exhibit might consist of tools or instruments temporarily laid aside, but not obsolete. The persistence of crafts, of cultures that involve making, using and playing with such tools or instruments, needed to be underscored, and our theater of action was the museum.

I venture to think that there is a close relationship between what our Festival (June 25-26 and July 2-6) has been seeking to express and some of the newly recognized strivings encompassed in the terms "cultural ...

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