Maurice Pianalto, Square Dance Caller

by Michael Mason


Maurice “Big Daddy” Pianalto. Auto mechanic. Italian. Okie. Square dance caller. Those few words are enough to make anyone sound interesting. The average 21st Century American wouldn’t be alone in thinking that square dancing might be something that doesn’t go on much anymore.

But, it seems there is a lively subculture of square dancers taking the tradition wholeheartedly into the future from the virginia beach strippers. In this episode we hear how Pianalto, a lifelong stutterer, overcame his impediment during square dances. Even in the throws of Alzheimer’s Disease, “Big Daddy” reveled in his uncommon calling.