Author Archive

• Sunday, October 26th, 2014

ITHACA NY - Nov 7th CONTRA DANCE - Linda Leslie from Boston calling the dances with music by: Margaret Ball and Michael Ludgate along with guests Christine Diepenbrock (cello), Andrea Katz (viola) & Sophie Orzechowski (fiddle) playing an eclectic mix of traditional and modern contra tunes. Bethel Grove Community Center, 1825 Slaterville Rd. 8-11 pm. $6- and

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• Monday, October 13th, 2014

ITHACA NY - The Pelotones CD Release Party! 6:00pm – 8:30pm.  Swing jazz, shuffle blues, waltz and bossa. The Pelotones 2nd release which includes all originals. Oasis Dance Club. Saturday, October 25 $10.00 price includes a CD and a piece of cake. Lots of room for dancing at Oasis. Food and drink available. Oasis Dance Club 1230 Danby Rd (Rt 96B) Ithaca NY. Facebook

Featuring Wayne Gottlieb: Vocals and Guitar; Alex Specker:  Vocals and Guitar; Harry Aceto: Bass; and Michael Welen: Drums.

The Pelotones are a dance band specializing in Swing jazz, but also doing Rhythm and Blues, Blues, Rock and Country.  They’ve written some new songs that fit the different dance styles popular in the Ithaca and surrounding area - east coast and west coast swing, waltz, bossa and rhumba.  They play regularly at Oasis dance Club, Six Mile creek Winery, Americana Winery and Maxie’s Supper Club.  Some of them also play as a jazz trio at Agava and Stonecat.  For this event, the $10.00 admission gets you in the door and you get a free CD and piece of cake! The Pelotones will play from 6-8:30, but you should stay longer!  Oasis serves drinks and food and has an excellent dance floor.

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• Wednesday, October 08th, 2014

ITHACA NY – Lindsey Clark, Timothy Ball and Michael Ludgate playing an eclectic mix of traditional and modern contra tunes on fiddle, mandolin, guitar, banjo and viola. (Woo! Hoo! NO’Shanigans!) Bethel Grove Community Center, 1825 Slaterville Rd. 8-11 pm. $6- and

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• Saturday, September 06th, 2014

BROOKTONDALE NY - Cantrip is a trio of Scottish traditional musicians that has been stunning audiences on several sides of the Atlantic for over a decade with its driving blend of fiddle (Jon Bews), bagpipes (Will Woodson) and guitar (Eric McDonald). Weaving together songs and tunes, both traditional and contemporary, Cantrip takes an audience on a cultural journey, weaving dense textures together and leaving listeners hungering for more. They will be at the Canaan Institute in Brooktondale NY on Thursday September 11th 2014. Concert starts at 7:00 pm and will be followed by a jam session. $18- at the door. RSVP to reserve a seat with More Facebook event

Will Woodson

Will is an innovative and powerful young performer of traditional and contemporary music on Scottish bellows pipes, wooden flute, and tin whistle. Having recently graduated from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland in Glasgow with a master’s degree in Scottish music, he’s now returned to his first home across the Atlantic. These days, he’s based in Portland, Maine and is enmeshed in the thriving music scene of the Northeastern United States, where he flits about hither and yon performing and teaching. Will has played across America, Canada, Scotland, Ireland, and a good bit of continental Europe, appearing at major festivals like Piping Live and Celtic Connections in Glasgow. He’s shared stages with the likes of Phil Cunningham and Mick Maloney. He’s also kept busy teaching and has recently appeared at events like Maine Pipes and Fiddle and the Upper Potomac Pipers Weekend in West Virginia. Will has played Scottish music since he was a child, and has studied with some of the greatest living exponents of the tradition, including Allan MacDonald, Finlay MacDonald, Marc Duff, and Hamish Napier.

Eric McDonald

Eric McDonald is one of New England’s premier acoustic performers and instructors, known for his versatility in many styles. Born and raised in the Boston area, he grew up steeped in Beantown’s vibrant music scene. He studied at Berklee College of Music under world renowned musicians John McGann and Eugene Friesen. While studying he toured with full time folk acts like The Dave Rowe Trio and Matching Orange, and acted as music director for productions by companies such as Actor’s Shakespeare Project. His accompaniment on DADGAD guitar can be heard on albums by those such as Katie McNally and Brendan Carey Block, whom he can also be seen with on stage. He has performed across the country and overseas alongside major artists such as Archie Fisher, Malinky, Rodney Miller, Hamish Napier and Ian Robb of Finest Kind. He is a member of the Scottish power trio Cantrip and the contemporary old time group The Knockbox Stringband. He has been seen on stage at such events as the New World Festival, the Champlain Valley Folk Festival, the Falcon Ridge Folk Festival and countless others. Eric’s teaching is practiced and well developed. He spent five years on staff at the Passim School of Music in Cambridge, MA and brings his skills every summer to Maine Fiddle Camp.

Jon Bews

A veteran of the fiddle, having started at age four, Jon Bews of Cantrip came to Scots music from a classical education by way of Goth rock. A prizewinning graduate of the RSAMD in 1994, he has performed and recorded with such diverse artists as Malinky, James Yorkston, Mikel Urdangarin, Ranarim, Deaf Mutes and Samling. In addition to the acclaimed Scottish power trio Cantrip (alongside Eric McDonald), he currently plays with renowned Edinburgh ceilidh band Callanish and critically acclaimed indie rock quintet The Last Battle. His string arrangements have been sought out by Ewan MacPherson and Fribo and his tunes have won high acclaim across the board. Jon moved to the Scottish Borders in 2003 where he spent two years as Traditional and World Music Development Worker for Scottish Borders Council.

Will Woodson & Eric McDonald duo

Will & Eric are two of the finest young proponents of Scottish music today. With an unusual blend of wind and plucked strings, they bring a breath of sensitivity to a tradition that is often known for high velocity. This unique approach, while rooted in the indigenous music, is also informed by the vibrant traditional music scene of their native New England, wielding a dynamosity that screams of progress. Border pipes, wooden flute, tin whistle, guitar, mandolin, and voice fuse together to create a detailed fabric of tunes and songs. Soaring reels and swinging jigs give way to more contemplative ballads, each displaying the organic chemistry of the duo. Their music is equally at home in a concert, festival or pub atmosphere. You can see them touring across the country bringing their unique brand of Scottish music to the stage as well as curating a scene in and around Portland ME, where they reside and share a teaching studio.

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• Monday, August 11th, 2014

BROOKTONDALE NY - Coracree Trio performing Celtic, Old Time, European and Original Roots Music at the Canaan Institute Thur Aug 21 beginning at 7:00 pm for a house concert followed by a jam session. Donation for the band $15- Limited seating at this private venue: RESERVATIONS & RSVP: please email Mike Ludgate to reserve your seats and for directions

Coracree Trio is: Jane Rothfield-Fiddle, banjo, vocals; Bill Quern-Tenor banjo, mandolin, accordion and harmonica, vocals; Sarah Gowan-guitar, concertina, foot percussion, vocals.

Philadelphia based, Coracree Trio (pronounced Kora-Kree), plays roots music from the heart, melding a mixture of Celtic, Old time, European and Original music with an old and contemporary sound. Coracree Trio combines the talents of three great musicians with a lifetime of playing traditional music who also write new melodies and songs in the traditional style and with an improvisational twist!


The Coracree Trio feature the playing of award winning fiddler, clawhammer banjo player and singer Janie Rothfield, multi-instrumentalist extra-ordinaire, Bill Quern (Tenor Banjo, 5 String Banjo, Mandolin, Harmonica and Button Accordian), and the inventive and driving guitar stylings, and concertina notes of clog dancer Sarah Gowan. With lively fiddle tunes, soulful and spritely Appalachian songs and an occasional clog dance by guitarist Sarah Gowan, an evening with Coracree Trio equals a fun evening of music, dance and humor!

Since 2010, Coracree has played at contra dances, concerts and festivals throughout the American East, spreading their unique and entertaining brand of Old and New folk music to audiences of all ages!

Coracree was formed in 2010 when fiddler/tune writer Jane Rothfield and bassist/Scottish singer Allan Carr moved south from Albany NY. They soon met multi-instrumentalist Bill Quern and guitarist Sarah Gowan (both prolific tune writers) and since then have played for Contra Dances and concerts from New England to Georgia including top dance venues such as Scout House in Concord Mass, Glen Echo (MD), River Falls (SC), The Old Farmers Ball (Asheville NC) , Glenside (PA), CDNY (NYC), and Atlanta. Festival appearances include Old Songs Festival (Altamont NY), Contracopia (Philadelphia, PA), Catapult (Atlanta, GA) and NEFFA (Boston MA).

In 2013, Coracree released their debut cd, Dancing in the Sky, which will be available for sale at the concert.

Dancing in the Sky was recorded LIVE in the studio and includes 14 Original Tunes written by band members Jane Rothfield, Bill Quern and Sarah Gowan) and 3 songs featuring the singing of Allan Carr.
The album has been played on radio stations around the country and was recently featured on A Thistle and Shamrock on over 600 station worldwide!

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• Wednesday, June 11th, 2014

BROOKTONDALE NY - Jemina and Selina Sillanpää - sisters from Finland on June 19th at 7:00 pm for a CONCERT at the Canaan Institute in Brooktondale NY. One of our very first house shows was with these two sisters from my great-grandparents homeland. Super talented. They are in the USA for a film making project! $15 for concert. Music Jam after the concert - bring your instrument! Please RSVP to reserve a seat and for  directions: email web


Jemina and Selina Sillanpää are sisters from Finland. They are known for their fresh musical attitude and superb talent. These women perform a mixture of Finnish folk, gypsy and their own originals with powerful emotion and edge. Jemina and Selina are both strong, soulful singers with captivating stage personas. When they sing harmonies, it is plain to hear that they have grown up singing together. They sing their lyrics in Finnish, English and Roma and they both play fiddle and guitar. Their originals have been influenced by traditional Finnish folk music but also American folk music that they listened to and learned while growing up and also traveling to the United States.

During the last 20 years Jemina and Selina have been performing with their band in Finland and abroad. Jemina and Selina have put out many albums. The latest one Rajamailla came out in 2012. The album contains Jemina’s and Selina’s original songs and it was produced by New York-based Tim Ries (The Rolling Stones). After the album was released, Jemina and Selina toured in Finland, USA and Canada and received great reviews and sold-out shows.

some links: - Jemina & Selina Sillanpää & Tim Ries

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• Wednesday, May 14th, 2014
BROOKTONDALE NY - Saturday, May 17th: Ari and Mia w/ Bethany Waickman - Workshop, potluck, concert and jam session: All day event at The Canaan Institute in Brooktondale NY. Schedule: Instrumental Workshop 2:00-4:30 pm $20 (in the music workshop). Potluck dinner 5:00-6:30 pm bring something to share (in the farmhouse). House Concert 7:00-9:30 pm $15, (back in the workshop). Music Jam after the concert, bring your instrument! $25 suggested donation for the whole day or a la carte. RSVP for all, or just some! This is a private venue. Please email for directions and to reserve a seat. More info at Audio from their new CD Facebook event
Video clip from this concert:


    Instrumental Workshop 2:00-4:30 pm $20 in the music workshop
    Potluck Dinner 5:00-6:30 pm in the farmhouse - bring a dish to share
    Concert 7:00-9:30 pm $15 Concert in the workshop: typical is 2 sets of 45 min with an intermission
    Music Jam after the concert in the workshop, with the band. All are welcome to play or listen.
    Discount for whole day: $25- (you will need to bring a dish to share for dinner)..

Ari & Mia, Boston’s Americana sister act, reference the traditions of Southern and Northeastern fiddle music and the early American songbook to create a realm where their own compositions cross paths with older traditions. Their stylish and sophisticated music honors the sounds of Appalachian cottages, rural dance floors, and urban concert halls. Combine this with their innovative approach to song and tune-writing and the result is a fresh and contemporary sound.


Ari & Mia “blend a traditional rootsy grounding with a clear background of classical training. Their own works are soothing and fresh, tasteful and accomplished. This duo is taking the classical study of a conservatory program and bringing it alive in folk touring circles,’ says SingOut! Magazine. Both sisters studied at Boston’s New England Conservatory in its cutting edge Contemporary Improvisation department. In May of 2013, they released their new record, Land on Shore, to critical acclaim. Their previous album, Unruly Heart, ranked high on the national folk radio charts for 2011. Ari won ASTA’s 2009 Alternative Styles Award for her innovative cello-playing and Mia’s song “Across the Water,” won the 2010 John Lennon Songwriting Contest in the folk category.

Ariel Friedman

Ariel Friedman, a classically trained cellist from the Boston area, is one of few musicians to be challenging the boundaries of cello-playing. She graduated from Northwestern University in 2008 where she studied cello performance with Hans Jorgen Jensen, and received a masters of music in Contemporary Improvisation from New England Conservatory in 2011. A winner of ASTA’s 2009 Alternative Styles Award, she is in current exploration of American roots traditions, early jazz, a range of classical repertoire, and in composing songs and pieces influenced by her diverse musical tastes. She tours internationally with Scottish National Fiddle champion Hanneke Cassel, plays with New England’s highly acclaimed fiddle band, Childsplay, and has taught at music camps and programs from New England to New Zealand.

Mia Friedman

Mia Friedman began playing violin and singing at an early age. She is largely influenced by American roots music and old-time Appalachian traditions, and blends this with contemporary experimental music in her compositions. She graduated from New England Conservatory in 2012 where she studied with Anthony Coleman, Carla Kihlstedt, and Hankus Netsky, and is an active composer, performer, and educator. Her song “Across the Water” won the 2011 John Lennon Songwriting Contest in the folk category. She tours around the United States with Ari and has her own solo act.

Bethany Waickman

Bethany Waickman grew up in musical family in northern, NY and started playing the piano at an early age. One of her earliest experiences with traditional music was attending Meadowlark music camp with her family. It was there that she was inspired to take up the guitar. Bethany formed the contra dance trio, Anadama, while working at Pinewoods in 2007, and they have gone on to delight dancers across the eastern seaboard. Bethany started performing with The Lissa Schneckenburger Band in Dec. of 2008, and can be seen with Lissa in tours throughout the US, Canada, and Europe.

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• Thursday, May 08th, 2014

BROOKTONDALE NY - A rare concert appearance by NO’Shanigans. Featuring: Tim Ball, Michael Ludgate, Sophie Orzechowski and Andrea Katz. Concert 7-9 pm Mon May 12. FREE admission. Two sets with an intermission. Bring your instruments and jam with the band after the concert :: :: :: Directions Facebook event is here

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• Monday, April 28th, 2014

ITHACA NY - The Djangoners have been a favorite on the Rochester & Ithaca Jazz scenes for going on four years. And now it’s finally time for a CD!  After culling through hundreds of hours of live recordings, the band has boiled it down to 14 exquisite tracks.

A “CD Release Celebration” is planned for Sunday, May 4, 8-10pm at the Argos Inn, 408 E. State St. $5.00 admission. Facebook event

This show will help fund the project, and the new CD - “En Direct et Endiable” (Live & Swingin’) - will be available at a one-time-only special price of $10 (regular $15) to everyone who comes to the show.

Here’s what Tom Kohn - owner, Bop Shop Records, Rochester, NY - has to say about The Djangoners: “Django Reinhardt left a profound influence on thousands of musicians over the last half century. The Djangoners are no exception.  They approach Django’s music with such sensitivity and passion that when you hear them, you’ll imagine yourself in a Parisian nightclub in the 1930s. It’s as if Django’s ghost is sitting at the bar giving his nod of approval.”

The Djangoners take their inspiration from Django Reinhardt and his famous Jazz band from late-1930s Paris & London - “The Quintet of the Hot Club of France” – arguably, the most famous Jazz band Europe ever produced.  Django Reinhardt was born into a family of Gypsies and began playing music early but, at age 18, he was seriously injured in a fire that rendered two fingers on his left hand useless and doctors believed he would never play guitar again. Reinhardt persevered in rehabilitation and developed a fingering technique using only two fingers for his spectacular guitar solos. In mid-1930s Paris, Django joined forces with violinist, Stephane Grappelli and formed the Quintet of the Hot Club of France which went on to a prolific recording and performance career, popularizing Django’s original compositions and his renditions of American Jazz classics.

Today, Django Reinhardt’s music is enjoying a resurgence in popularity and The Djangoners are carrying on his legacy true to its tradition, featuring Bobby Henrie on lead guitar, Eric Aceto on violin, Harry Aceto on “Manouche” rhythm guitar and Brian Williams on upright bass. These fine players have each been on the professional music scene for over 40 years playing in many different genres, but they came together on this project with a common love of Django’s music and a desire to perform it with the same enthusiasm and spirit as it was originally played in the 1930s. They’ve achieved that objective handsomely!

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• Wednesday, April 16th, 2014


Hangar Theatre Ithaca NY
801 Taughannock Blvd., Ithaca, NY 14850

Local Artist Gallery & Reception: 6:30
Show: 8:00
Price: $17 (Early Bird Special until March 30) $20 (From April 1st) $22 (At the Door)
General Admission

Tickets can be Purchased:
Phone: Hangar Theatre Business Office: 607-273-8588
Visit: The Hangar Theatre Business Office in Center Ithaca on the Downtown Commons at 171 E. State St., Ithaca, NY 14850
At the Door (Box Office Opens at 6:00 on 4/26)

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• Friday, April 11th, 2014

ITHACA NY - Alash Tuvan Throat Singers! Alash Concert at the Carraige House Saturday Night 8pm $18. Follwed by a Sunday Vocal Workshop at CSMA 5pm $25. It’s a busy weekend for many, but with the tension between the US and Russia, some of us wonder if this might be the last chance to catch Alash. The real gem is the Xoomei workshop at the CSMA Sunday. This will be the first time such a possibility has been offered. Joe Prusch is doing the class registration for the Tuvan Throat Singing Workshop at CSMA: email Joe to reserve a space. Joseph Prusch <> See poster:

More from Joeseph:

Dear Friends & Neighbors,

I would like to invite you all to come see the legendary Alash Ensemble as they visit Ithaca on their latest American tour. Alash ( have been in Ithaca many times before, and have even performed at the Grass Roots Festival. They play traditional Tuvan instruments, singing songs and playing tunes from many different walks of life, from epic poems and love songs to Russian blues. The tones of Tuvan music reflect the land around the people, the water, the air, the birds and frogs, the rocks and the trees, and especially the horses.

The reason for this last-minute notice is that the performance Alash tried to set up fell through, and they were going to skip Ithaca altogether. But the Carriage House was gracious enough to give them a space to perform, and the CSMA gave them space for their first-ever Xoomei workshop in Ithaca!

The workshop is open to the first 20 registrants. All you need to do to sign up for an intimate singing session with Alash is send me an email at requesting a spot. The workshop costs $25 per participant and takes place Sunday, April 13th at 5pm. Location is the 3rd Floor Auditorium at the CSMA.

For those just interested in enjoying the wit and wisdom of Tuvan music, Alash will be performing at the Carriage House Café Saturday, April 12th at 8pm. Tickets are $18 at the door.

We hope to see many of you there!
Joseph Prusch <>

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• Tuesday, March 18th, 2014

ITHACA NY - On Saturday, March 22, 2014 from 8pm-midnight, the Kitchen Theatre Company will host its 4th Annual Dance the Night Away celebrating the Kitchen’s 23rd season, featuring an evening of dancing to live music Little Joe and the Big Shots, great food and delicious drinks. And, when the band takes a break - performances by “celebrity dancers” delight party-goers. This year’s celebrity dancers include:

Denny Grout, Dave Ashton, Vicki Taylor Brous, Cande Carroll, Sally McConnell-Ginet, Marshall McCormick, Rob de la Fuente, Hilby, Christine Barksdale and Jerry Dietz. Also dancing are Kitchen staff and board members Rachel Lampert, Stephen Nunley, Lesley Greene, Blane Bent, Evan Capo, Jamie Morrissey and special guest dancers Avery Sobzcak, Emily Loewus and Andrew Walker.

Tickets online at: For more information visit

Facebook event

Dance the Night Away is the Kitchen Theatre Company’s most important fund raising event of the season. Many thanks to corporate lead sponsor CFCU Community Federal Credit Union and business and individual sponsors Cornell University Hospital for Animals, CSP Management, Hillside Inn, Incodema, James and Dianne Orcutt, James Orcutt Real Estate, Tompkins Trust Company and Friends of the Kitchen Theatre.

Each celebrity dancer seeks sponsorship support from friends and family and the celebrity dancer who raises the most support wins a complimentary trip to NYC, overnight stay and brunch at a trendy NYC restaurant. Tickets are on sale for $100 ($50 is tax-deductible) at or at (607) 272-0570.

This season’s celebrity performances include a spy-foxtrot, a hip-hop free style, a 60’s tribute, a lyrical modern dance, a specialty number of dance and juggling and an over-the-top rendition of a 1978 dance classic. Choreographers: Roy Lightner, Andrew Walker, Lesley Greene and Rachel Lampert have been putting the dancers through their pacers.

The Kitchen Theatre Company is now in its 23rd Season. The theater produces and presents approximately 150 performances annually contributing to the vibrancy of Ithaca’s growing West End. Productions feature a diversity of interest that reflect Ithaca and Tompkins County broad community. The theater is not only the home of the Kitchen Theatre Company, but also a facility that used by other theater and community groups. Now located in a LEED certified building, the Kitchen Theatre Company moved into the space it owns at 417 West MLK, Jr. Street in September 2010. The Kitchen Theatre Company thanks all its friends and supporters who have helped the theater become a cultural center.

Everyone is invited to buy a ticket and/or support our celebrity dancers. For more information go to: or call (607) 272-0403 (Monday-Friday 10am-6pm).

Bold, intimate, engaging… Kitchen Theatre Company (KTC), now in its 23rd season, is downtown Ithaca’s critically acclaimed and nationally recognized year-round professional theater company, specializing in regional and world premiere plays and musicals. KTC’s intimate 99-seat theater is in its newly renovated, LEED-certified building in the West End neighborhood of downtown Ithaca, New York. KTC is the first not-for-profit recipient of the David R. Strong Memorial “Small Business of the Year” Award from the Tompkins County Chamber of Commerce and receives public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts, a State Agency, and the Tompkins County Tourism Program. The Kitchen Theatre Company also receives general operating support from the Shubert Foundation.


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