September 4th Contradance - Change


Due to a urgent family issue, Ms Marty and SGB will not be able to play at our dance this Friday.

Fortunately, on very short notice, we were able to book another band, Robert Calandresa & Friends.
Robert plays accordion and brings with him his friends, fiddler John Potocnik and Tom Ives on bass.
They performed at our January dance and really warmed up our cold winter night.

If you didn't hear them then, this is a great chance to hear their repertoire of traditional and old-time tunes, as well as some original tunes written by Robert.
see you Friday!

September 4th Contradance


After a relaxing summer, we will resume our 2015 season on Friday, September 4th. The band will be Ms Marty & SGB, and Ted Crane will be calling.

Ms Marty & her “Smokin' Good Band” come from Ithaca and have been playing dances and other events in and around central New York for more than 10 years. The band includes Marty Blodgett on fiddle, Jess Youngquest playing guitar and harmonica and Steve Ellner on accordion. They are well known for mixing rags and swing tunes into their dance music and Jess will frequently add a fun-loving touch with vocal renditions of classic tunes.

Ted has been a caller and contradance organizer in the Ithaca area since the early 1980's. And, he created and maintains a national internet database of performers and dance series, with schedules for English, Contra and Square dances. Check it out!

With Marty's lively and creative fiddling and their fun-loving style, combined with Ted's calling a wide range of traditional and comtemporary contras, it's sure to be a wonderful way to kick off the fall season!

No Summer Contradances


Hope you all enjoyed our Caribbean Contra in June.
We had a great turnout, with fabulous music, wonderful refreshment treats, and an all-round good time.

As usual, we skip the contradances in July and August.
But we'll be back on Friday September 4th, 2015.
For that dance, the music will be by Ms Marty & SGB, with Ted Crane calling.

Watch your email, this blog, or our facebook page later for more details about this dance.
And look for our newsletter in mid August, which will include our schedule for the rest of the year.

Have a wonderful summer...see you in September!

Caribbean Contradance June 5th


Finally winter has left us and summer is close.
And with it comes our special June dance...the Caribbean Contra!

To celebrate, our hall will be festively decorated and we will have some special treats for refreshments.
And, if you like, come dressed in Caribbean style. (If you do, you will get a discount on the admission fee.)
The music will be by "Balter" and Peter Stix will be the caller.

Balter is made up of Peter Blue on accordions, nyckelharpa, and percussion, fiddler John Potocnik, Tom Wetmore on bass, drummer Marcel Smith, and Carol Mandigo playing guitar. And they will be joined by two special guests...Rachel Polens playing conga and recorders and Solvei Blue on clarinet and percussion.
While all these musicians are well versed in traditional contradance tunes, they will be adding a Caribbean twist to some of our favorites. And they probably will have a few surprises for us as well.

Peter Stix is a well-known caller and teacher of New England contradances. He has been calling for more than 25 years in many parts of the country but now concentrates on leading dances in and around the Capital District. It is a real treat to have Peter join us in Cooperstown and he will surely put his own stamp on this fun event.

Peter says the band's name means "to dance without particular skill or grace but with extreme joy".
So come BALTER with us on June 5th!

May 1st Contradance

This Friday, our monthly contradance will have music by Uncle Joe & the Rosebud Ramblers and Michael Kernan will be calling.

The Rosebud Ramblers are made up of Joe Chicone on banjo, Renee Baum on fiddle, Tom Farrell on guitar and Nancy Spero on bass. The group plays a mix of lively up tempo New England fiddle tunes, energetic old time tunes and family oriented traditional folk songs, with Joe and Tom adding an occasional vocal.

Mike Kernan has been the house caller at Saratoga Springs' start-up Parting Glass series, called at the NEFFA Festival in 2014 and many other dances in NY, MA, VT and CT. He is a dancer himself (both a contradancer and an English country dancer), which is what he attributes his success a a caller.

Join us for another fun-filled night of dancing.

April 3rd Contradance


At this month's contradance, Traverse be providing the music and Gary Aney will be calling.

Traverse is a locally-based band featuring Liz Brown on flute, Carol Mandigo on guitar, and Bernd Neumann on fiddle. Together they play traditional music from the various Celtic cultures and contemporary American contradance tunes.

Caller Gary is a popular favorite in central New York and a longtime dancer as well. He combines his love of historical interpretation with modern influences to call a pleasing balance of contemporary and traditional contradances. He calls dances from the Revolutionary War era, the nineteenth, twentieth and even twenty-first centuries which makes for an interesting blend of sounds and styles.

This combination will create an evening which will be enjoyable for dancers of all ages and ability levels. So try to join us.

March 6th Contradance


Getting tired of winter? Come warm up at our March dance!
The music will be by Continental Drift and Bob Nicholson will be calling.

Continental Drift is a high-energy duo made up of Eric Anderson and Eileen Nicholson. Eric is a pianist from Seattle and has played with groups like Celticladda. Eileen, Bob's daughter and a native of Syracuse, plays fiddle with several are groups like Happy Endings and Seaglass.

But for the past year, they have been touring throughout the country.
Eileen combines a remarkable tone with solid rhythm and Eric's lively piano style adds a special touch to each dance. Their 'fiddle-and-piano' combination is sure to please!

Bob has been calling contra and square dances since 1990 throughout New York, Pennsylvania, Ontario and beyond. He has an easy-going calling style which makes him especially successful with beginner dancers.
And his enthusiasm makes for a great evening of fun for beginners and veterans alike.

With the band's exciting style and repertoire and Bob's teaching skills,
this is a great chance to learn contradancing or improve your skills.