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Perform­ers for the 2016 Winter Solabration:
Susan Marie Frontczak, Storyteller
Maroon Bells Morris Dancers
Solstice Sword Dancers
Kleftes Greek Dancers
Bryan Connolly Extreme Juggling
Abbie Lawrence, Balloons & Face Painting
Chris Kermiet, Dance Caller & M.C.
Tina Fields, Guest Caller
Patricia Danscen, Guest Caller
Pipers & Drummers
This year’s band:
Prairie Dog Picnic
featuring:
Rodney Sauer
Bonnie Carol
Kate Kerr
Phil Norman
Dave Firestine





Susan Marie Frontczak

Storysmith® Susan Marie Frontczak brings literature to life, picturecreates stories from thin air, and hones personal experience into tales worth telling again and again. Her stories and living history presentations have taken her to schools, libraries, corporations, and theaters across 39 of the United States as well as Europe. Susan's original stories have been heard on Colorado Public Radio (Morning Edition), at the Colorado Music Festival Young People's Concert, through Story Gleaner productions, and on her CD"The Three Fishes & Other Stories." Susan Marie's motto is: "Give me a place to stand, and I will take you somewhere else." More at www.storysmith.org.



Susan Marie Frontczak, Storyteller /  Maroon Bells Morris Dancers /  The Solstice Sword Dancers /  Kleftes Greek Dancers /  Bryan Connolly Extreme Juggling /  Abbie Lawrence, Balloons & Face Painting /  Chris Kermiet, Dance Caller & M.C.  /  Tina Fields, Guest Caller /  Patricia Danscen, Guest Caller /  Pipers & Drummers /  Prairie Dog Picnic /  Rodney Sauer, Musician /  Bonnie Carol, Musician /  Kate Kerr, Musician /  Phil Norman, Musician /  Dave Firestine, Musician /  Top of Page




The Maroon Bells Morris Dancers

pictureMaroon Bells is the oldest of the morris teams now dancing in Colorado.  We’ve been kicking up our heels, and jingling a few bells, since 1982 – long enough for some of our offspring to grow up and join the team.  Our dancers come from towns along the Front Range and many walks of life.  All are welcome to join us, particularly for our new dancers class each fall.  We perform locally, at festivals and for special events, as well as a few more distant spots, e.g., Red Lodge, MT, the U.S. Midwest, and, every decade or so, in England.  If you’d like to join us, please contact Squire Robin Smith for more information, or visit us on the web at: maroonbellsmorris.org



Susan Marie Frontczak, Storyteller /  Maroon Bells Morris Dancers /  The Solstice Sword Dancers /  Kleftes Greek Dancers /  Bryan Connolly Extreme Juggling /  Abbie Lawrence, Balloons & Face Painting /  Chris Kermiet, Dance Caller & M.C.  /  Tina Fields, Guest Caller /  Patricia Danscen, Guest Caller /  Pipers & Drummers /  Prairie Dog Picnic /  Rodney Sauer, Musician /  Bonnie Carol, Musician /  Kate Kerr, Musician /  Phil Norman, Musician /  Dave Firestine, Musician /  Top of Page

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The Solstice Sword Dancers

picture The Solstice Sword Dancers are five members of the Bennett School of Irish Dance: Bill and Molly Bennett, Bill MacAllister, Ken Horwedge, and Beckee Laurie. As exciting as Irish dancing can be, the intricate interlacings of rapper swords adds a whole new dimension to their dancing experience. Their practices have become one of the premier spectator events at the Friendship Irish Dance Center, since nobody can believe that anyone could extricate themselves from the complex tangles of steel that are the heart of rapper sword figures. They always do, however, like so many armed Houdinis, ready to go into the next impossible tangle and amaze everyone by emerging unscathed.
See them on YouTube.



Susan Marie Frontczak, Storyteller /  Maroon Bells Morris Dancers /  The Solstice Sword Dancers /  Kleftes Greek Dancers /  Bryan Connolly Extreme Juggling /  Abbie Lawrence, Balloons & Face Painting /  Chris Kermiet, Dance Caller & M.C.  /  Tina Fields, Guest Caller /  Patricia Danscen, Guest Caller /  Pipers & Drummers /  Prairie Dog Picnic /  Rodney Sauer, Musician /  Bonnie Carol, Musician /  Kate Kerr, Musician /  Phil Norman, Musician /  Dave Firestine, Musician /  Top of Page




Kleftes Greek Dancers

Kleftes Greek Dancers

From the Boulder Greek Festival, 2014

The Kleftes Greek Dancers are the only adult dance group from the Denver Greek Orthodox Church!  They dance at festivals and events all around Colorado as well as out of state.  The Kleftes Dancers have been together for over ten years and they love sharing their love of dance and the Greek culture with the community.



Susan Marie Frontczak, Storyteller /  Maroon Bells Morris Dancers /  The Solstice Sword Dancers /  Kleftes Greek Dancers /  Bryan Connolly Extreme Juggling /  Abbie Lawrence, Balloons & Face Painting /  Chris Kermiet, Dance Caller & M.C.  /  Tina Fields, Guest Caller /  Patricia Danscen, Guest Caller /  Pipers & Drummers /  Prairie Dog Picnic /  Rodney Sauer, Musician /  Bonnie Carol, Musician /  Kate Kerr, Musician /  Phil Norman, Musician /  Dave Firestine, Musician /  Top of Page




Bryan Connolly Extreme Juggling

Bryan Connolly, Circus Knight

Bryan Connolly is a vivacious jug­gler/ acro­bat/ fire-fiend who enjoys mixing handfuls of comedy with heaping scoops of pseudo-mortal predicaments.  Fire-eating, machete juggling, bowling ball balancing and much more are contained within this dazzling delight of danger.


More at CircusKnight.com


Circus Knight on YouTube


Susan Marie Frontczak, Storyteller /  Maroon Bells Morris Dancers /  The Solstice Sword Dancers /  Kleftes Greek Dancers /  Bryan Connolly Extreme Juggling /  Abbie Lawrence, Balloons & Face Painting /  Chris Kermiet, Dance Caller & M.C.  /  Tina Fields, Guest Caller /  Patricia Danscen, Guest Caller /  Pipers & Drummers /  Prairie Dog Picnic /  Rodney Sauer, Musician /  Bonnie Carol, Musician /  Kate Kerr, Musician /  Phil Norman, Musician /  Dave Firestine, Musician /  Top of Page




Abbie Lawrence, Balloons & Face Painting

Abbie at the Winter Solabration, 2012

Abbie Lawrence is an award-winning artist and entertainer. Following extensive training, Abbie was invited by the Armed Forces Professional Entertainment Office to perform in Italy, Spain, England, Scotland, Germany, Turkey and the Azores. She founded Mime Time in 1982.


Abbie performs at private and public events for individuals and organizations of all types. She also teaches workshops and classes in the Denver Metro area, as well as performing at Denver Public Libraries. She teaches and performs in the Denver Public Schools as an ArtReach instructor, and she has been performing at the Winter Solabration since 2011.



Susan Marie Frontczak, Storyteller /  Maroon Bells Morris Dancers /  The Solstice Sword Dancers /  Kleftes Greek Dancers /  Bryan Connolly Extreme Juggling /  Abbie Lawrence, Balloons & Face Painting /  Chris Kermiet, Dance Caller & M.C.  /  Tina Fields, Guest Caller /  Patricia Danscen, Guest Caller /  Pipers & Drummers /  Prairie Dog Picnic /  Rodney Sauer, Musician /  Bonnie Carol, Musician /  Kate Kerr, Musician /  Phil Norman, Musician /  Dave Firestine, Musician /  Top of Page




Chris Kermiet

Chris Kermiet has been calling and teaching traditional American picturecommunity dances for over forty years and is recognized as one of the finest callers in the United States.  In 2000, he received the Heritage Award/2000 Artist Fellowship from the Colorado Council on the Arts for calling and teaching traditional American dance, as well as the Westword Best of Denver Award for Best Dance Caller.  In 2009 he was honored as a "Living Legend of Dance"  by the Carson-Brierly-Giffin Dance Library at the University of Denver.  His video interview can be viewed here.  During the last ten years, as well as being in demand as a caller and teacher of traditional dance, he has created choreographies for a number of performing groups and theater companies.


Chris grew up with traditional dance.  His father, Paul Kermiet, was one of Colorado's premier old time callers, and ran a summer dance camp on Lookout Mountain where Chris heard the best callers from around the country.  He learned from all of them, and it shows in his teaching and calling, his broad repertoire and familiarity with traditional dance, and the way he puts new dancers at ease.  He calls at numerous events across the Front Range, and currently leads the Denver English Dance.


Visit his web-site.
He has also been posting his poems on-line at poemofthemonth.us for the past five years.



Susan Marie Frontczak, Storyteller /  Maroon Bells Morris Dancers /  The Solstice Sword Dancers /  Kleftes Greek Dancers /  Bryan Connolly Extreme Juggling /  Abbie Lawrence, Balloons & Face Painting /  Chris Kermiet, Dance Caller & M.C.  /  Tina Fields, Guest Caller /  Patricia Danscen, Guest Caller /  Pipers & Drummers /  Prairie Dog Picnic /  Rodney Sauer, Musician /  Bonnie Carol, Musician /  Kate Kerr, Musician /  Phil Norman, Musician /  Dave Firestine, Musician /  Top of Page




Tina Fields

Tina in feathered hat

Tina Fields calls contra and other traditional American "barn" dances, with the goal of creating maximum joy.  She is known for her effervescent sparkle, great sense of timing, clear projection, singing style, patience with new dancers, collaborative way of working with bands, and comfortable humor.  Tina brings day job skills as a college professor to her dance teaching.  She is also a singer, myth-loving storyteller, and ceremonial facilitator.  She has been on staff for various dance camps as both contra caller and songleader.  Her next camp will be in the lovely Colorado mountains This coming February, Stellar Days and Nights.  More at Tina’s website.

Tina recently published an article chronicling some of her family elders’ involvement with square dancing in the 1950’s rural west.  Read it here:  http://www.cdss.org/programs/cdss-news-publications/cds-online/square-dance



Susan Marie Frontczak, Storyteller /  Maroon Bells Morris Dancers /  The Solstice Sword Dancers /  Kleftes Greek Dancers /  Bryan Connolly Extreme Juggling /  Abbie Lawrence, Balloons & Face Painting /  Chris Kermiet, Dance Caller & M.C.  /  Tina Fields, Guest Caller /  Patricia Danscen, Guest Caller /  Pipers & Drummers /  Prairie Dog Picnic /  Rodney Sauer, Musician /  Bonnie Carol, Musician /  Kate Kerr, Musician /  Phil Norman, Musician /  Dave Firestine, Musician /  Top of Page




Patricia Danscen

picture

Patricia Danscen’s contagious smile and energetic whimsical calling spread the passion of dance wherever she goes.  Her clear and concise teaching and welcoming smile will engage both new and experienced dancers and keep them dancing all night long!  Patricia’s repertoire includes contras, squares, circles, and traditional reels.  She has called dances throughout Colorado and in several other states.


In addition to calling, Patricia plays double bass and guitar, and performed with a clogging troupe for 12 years.  Her passion for dance and music is evident as she hosts jams, co-organizes community dances, and leads dance workshops.


"I absolutely love seeing people smile and having a great time on the dance floor!"



Susan Marie Frontczak, Storyteller /  Maroon Bells Morris Dancers /  The Solstice Sword Dancers /  Kleftes Greek Dancers /  Bryan Connolly Extreme Juggling /  Abbie Lawrence, Balloons & Face Painting /  Chris Kermiet, Dance Caller & M.C.  /  Tina Fields, Guest Caller /  Patricia Danscen, Guest Caller /  Pipers & Drummers /  Prairie Dog Picnic /  Rodney Sauer, Musician /  Bonnie Carol, Musician /  Kate Kerr, Musician /  Phil Norman, Musician /  Dave Firestine, Musician /  Top of Page




Pipers & Drummers

NCCPB Bass Drum

Performers for this year’s Grand March are members of the Northern Colorado Caledonia Pipe Band.  They are John Wharrier, Paul Landers, Dan Rousch, and Chris Doyle.  The NCCPB is a successful competition band with members from Commerce City to Greeley to Ft. Collins to Boulder and everwhere in between.


Visit the band’s website for more information.  Also on Join Us on Facebook



Susan Marie Frontczak, Storyteller /  Maroon Bells Morris Dancers /  The Solstice Sword Dancers /  Kleftes Greek Dancers /  Bryan Connolly Extreme Juggling /  Abbie Lawrence, Balloons & Face Painting /  Chris Kermiet, Dance Caller & M.C.  /  Tina Fields, Guest Caller /  Patricia Danscen, Guest Caller /  Pipers & Drummers /  Prairie Dog Picnic /  Rodney Sauer, Musician /  Bonnie Carol, Musician /  Kate Kerr, Musician /  Phil Norman, Musician /  Dave Firestine, Musician /  Top of Page




Prairie Dog Picnic, featuring:

Rodney Sauer

PictureRodney Sauer has been playing piano and accordion for square and contra dances since the mid-1980’s, almost exclusively along the Front Range of Colorado.  He has contributed powerful rhythmic accompaniment to such bands as Deb and the Pariahs, The Buffleheads, Falcon Flight, and Prairie Dog Picnic, as well as popular duets with fiddlers Eric Levine, Sandra Wong, and Elizabeth Wood.  He has also been the long-time accordionist for the Maroon Bells Morris Dancers.  His interest in dance music led him to create the Mont Alto Ragtime and Tango Orchestra in 1989, which has developed into one of the world’s pre-eminent silent film orchestras.  Visit his web-site at www.mont-alto.com.



Bonnie Carol

Picture Bonnie Carol was born on the world's largest cattle ranch in Kingsville, Texas.  She began planing music when she first accompanied her mother on piano at age 4 (whether her mother wanted her to or not).  Bonnie graduated from the University of Colorado with a degree in psychology, and worked in the field for a few years.  In 1971 when she lost a mental health job, Max Krimmel said, innocently enough, "I could show you how to make dulcimers and maybe you could do that for a living."  And so began a saga – "Well trained mental health professional becomes gypsy musician and crafts person."  By 2000 Bonnie had won most of the dulcimer contests in the nation, built 300+ fretted dulcimers, recorded five albums of dulcimer music, written five books about the dulcimer, and had performed all over the US for 30 years.  This is her fifth appearance at the Winter Solabration.  You can learn more about her at www.BonnieCarol.com.



Kate Kerr

PictureKate Kerr started classical violin lessons at age 10.  In college she attended a fiddle contest in Santa Fe.  Some of the entrants were beginners, bravely playing simple tunes.  Kate thought "Gee I could probably do that!"  A lightbulb turned on as she realized she was more suited to a variety of folky "fiddle" styles.  Since then, Kate has loved fiddling for dances and concerts up and down the East Coast and, since 2012, in Colorado.



Phil Norman

PictureA performer dedicated to redefining cello playing, Phil Norman draws from diverse influences to create eclectic original compositions.  Classically trained with a degree from the University of Colorado, he has studied jazz with pianist Russell Schmidt and violinist Glenn Basham, and has since been immersed in alternative styles of cello playing.  He is an active performer in the Front Range of Colorado, performing with Kristi Stice, Someone’s in for an Explosion, Travis Grode and nationally with Bettman and Halpin.  He has performed concerts in the United States, Italy, and Australia, and has appeared on stage with composer and pianist Carter Pann, guitarist Grant Gordy, and Bonnie Carol.  Phil was also a Featured Artist for TEDxBoulder.  Phil’s website is GravityCello.com



Dave Firestine

PictureDave Firestine is a versatile musician known for his clean rhythmic style and his gift for getting the most out of a tune.  He has a knack for syncopation and drive on reels, but also a poignant sense of timing on quieter sets such as O’Carolan pieces. Dave is a primary host of the Tucson Irish session, Tucson Old time Session, and the Tucson Open band.  He has a talent for leading sessions in many settings so that all attending can participate and enjoy playing together.  He is well known for leading great jams at the Walnut Valley Festival Carp Camp jams in Winfield Kansas, where he often brings tunes that have a unique twist, or sets that introduce interesting changes of tempo or keys. Dave also brings the experience of playing within a band setting. He is a member of many bands, including STEAM!, The Privy Tippers, Púca, and Prairie Dog Picnic.
Dave has been teaching mandolin both privately and in group settings at festivals, dance weekends, and music camps for nearly 20 years.  His teaching emphasizes the importance of consistent pick direction to bring out the inherent rhythmic phrasing of tunes.  He also works with chord progressions, developing variations, and incorporating rhythmic backing into the tunes. In addition to playing mandolin, Dave plays bouzouki, tenor banjo, guitar, and bodhran.



Susan Marie Frontczak, Storyteller /  Maroon Bells Morris Dancers /  The Solstice Sword Dancers /  Kleftes Greek Dancers /  Bryan Connolly Extreme Juggling /  Abbie Lawrence, Balloons & Face Painting /  Chris Kermiet, Dance Caller & M.C.  /  Tina Fields, Guest Caller /  Patricia Danscen, Guest Caller /  Pipers & Drummers /  Prairie Dog Picnic /  Rodney Sauer, Musician /  Bonnie Carol, Musician /  Kate Kerr, Musician /  Phil Norman, Musician /  Dave Firestine, Musician /  Top of Page


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