The Center for Traditional Music and Dance (CTMD), formerly known as the Ethnic Folk Arts Center, works to promote the practice of traditional performing arts, affirming the value of diversity in the U.S. CTMD does this through developing performance and educational programs of music and dance indigenous to the ethnic communities in New York. These programs include concerts, festivals, audio and video productions, concert tours, technical assistance, collaborative projects and consultations with artists, cultural activists and with educational and cultural institutions.
Since its establishment in 1968, CTMD has produced over 800 presentations, working with ethnic communities. The Centre collaborates with community-based organizations and cultural institutions in New York dedicated to the same cause. It works with some of the performing artists who carry on the rich and varied traditions of Dominican, Haitian, Irish, Italian, Jewish, Puerto Rican, African-American, Colombian, Balkan, Arabic-speaking, Portuguese, Scandinavian, West African, Asian Indian and other communities.
Based in New York, in the U.S., Center for Traditional Music and Dance documents and preserves the research and performance projects of the organization. This archive contains a collection of audio and video tapes, photographs and printed matter that document over 35 years of folk, ethnic and immigrant performing arts traditions of cultural communities in New York City. These materials include over 950 performing artists from around the world documented in performance and in some cases, through numerous interviews and transcriptions. In 1997 and 1998, CTMD began cataloguing its archive through a Documentary Heritage Program grant from the New York State Archive and Records Administration. With help from the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences Foundation that Center was able to create a digital archive.