El Cerrito Free Folk Festival 2015

Folkies get out your fiddles and polish your dancing shoes, for the 2015 El Cerrito Free Folk Festival is coming up fast! This year the Festival is on Saturday, September 26th, from noon to 9:30 pm at El Cerrito High School, 540 Ashbury Avenue.

Free Folk Festival 2015

The packed program has something for everyone, whether you love to listen, or to learn, or to play live music yourself. With featured performances and workshops from world-renowned musicians and local favorites, the Festival also includes open mics and jam sessions for musicians of all abilities, so bring your instruments!

To get you in the mood, here are some highlights from last year’s Festival: Erik Hoffman led a workshop on Beginning Fiddle Repertoire.

Erik Hoffman

Natasha Haugnes rocked out on the washboard with the Quake City Jug Band.

Quake City Jug Band : Natasha Haugnes

Quake City Jug Band : Natasha Haugnes

And Northern California favorites Euphonia played American roots party music.



Click here for the Festival’s webpage, which includes links to this year’s performers and will be updated as more are added. This link will take you to the schedule.

New this year: an all-day dance program in the High School’s dance studio, followed by two dance parties with live music. Here’s the dance schedule:

Noon – Bollywood – a Warm-up Class with Style – Lahlah Habib (Lois Davis)
1 pm –The Laendler Waltz – Cathleen Myers & Alex Lerman with the Transit of Earth band
2 pm – Jane Austen’s Dances (English Regency Country Dancing) – Alan Winston with Transit of Earth
3 pm – Irish Ceili Dancing – Bob Carragher & Alex Lerman
4 pm –Scottish Country Dance – Tom Winter & the Dunsmuir Scottish Dancers (and musicians)
5 pm – Classic Waltz Mixers & Sequence Dances – Alan Winston with Transit of Earth

6:30 to 8:00 with Da! Mozhem – An International Folk Dance Party. All dances will be briefly taught or called by dance mistress Ginny Snyder

8:00 to 9:30 with – Transit of Earth – A Dickens Dance Party (with dance masters Cathleen Myers and Alex Lerman, and the Fezziwig Warehouse Dancers from the Great Dickens Fair of London) Waltzes, polkas, schottisches, mazurka waltzes (or “hambos”), mixers, English, Irish, Scottish country dances, the grand march Sir Roger de Coverley, the Congress of Vienna Waltz – all the delightful couple and set dances we do at the annual Dickens Christmas Fair of London! All set dances will be briefly taught and called.

The City’s Arts & Culture Commission is proud to co-sponsor this annual event with the San Francisco Folk Music Club. Check out the Festival’s Facebook page for more information. And volunteers are still needed — you can sign up through this link.


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