2012 Workshop Explanations

2012 Workshop Explanations

Friday workshops June 22 (to be held in the S.B.E. School Commons)

Beginning at 10 AM Sharp

Susanne Summerville, mezzo-soprano, choral conductor and music historian, joined the faculty at UAF in 1978 and retired in 1999 retired as Professor of Music. As a writer for international encyclopedias, she has current entries in the New Grove 2000 (Fairbanksan Robert M Crawford, composer of “Off We Go into the Wild Blue Yonder”), and the Encyclopedia of Popular Music in the World (“Popular Music in Alaska”). Her recordings include From the Great Land, song cycles by Violet Archer, Ravonna Martin and Corey Field based on the poetry of Interior Alaskan poets Frank Buske, Katherine Doak and Linda Schandelmeier. She is the founding conductor Fairbanks’ Sing-It-Yourself-Messiah, a winner of ASCAP’s CHORUS AMERICA Award for Adventuresome Programming of Contemporary Music and a recipient of the Alaska Governor’s Award for the Arts.  Her workshop will be a walk through Alaska’s history of song.  It will be a powerpoint presentation of many of Alaska’s early composers and interesting artwork surrounding those works.  She says, “We should look forward to…..

Popular Music in the 49th State where

We sing of Alaska’s own stories,

Of women and men without fear,

Of those who have faith in the future,

Who live and love on the last frontier.

© Shirley English (Alaska’s Own, 1985)

Beginning precisely at 1:OO PM

Feature Film presented by creator, Dan Crary himself.  THE AMAZING STORY OF THE WORLD’s MOST POPULAR INSTRUMENT

Primal Twang is an exciting theatrical journey through the guitar’s colorful and surprisingly controversial 3500–year history.The story of the world’s most popular instrument is brought to life through extraordinary stories, rare historical footage, and electrifying live performances by legendary world musician, Dan Crary and an all-star ensemble of international guitar greats including Grammy-winners, Eric Johnson, Albert Lee, Andrew York, Mason Williams, and Doc. Watson.

Saturday Workshops June 23 (beginning at 1:00 PM, these run 4 at a time, see schedule for times and rooms)

Robin Hopper’s Family Play Party Dance Workshop

Hey kids!  Bring your parents, and spend an hour learning some fun musical play-party dances, designed for good old-fashioned family fun!  Play Parties date back to the “good-old-days”, when social gatherings centered around singing and dancing.  Play party songs are short and easy to learn, with dance steps that are simple to do, and LOTS of fun for all ages.

Finger- Style Workshops

This workshop by John Cook will focus on adding finger style guitar playing into your own style. John will address ‘Travis picking’, ’drop D” tuning, some simple neck tapping and harmonics. This is a very ‘hands on’ workshop, with close up demonstrations and examples.

Workshop with Rick Brooks will feature Rick’s own tricks and techniques for finger-style.  Rick is a master guitar teacher and Alaskan performer. He is a staff teacher at the Acoustic Alaska Guitar Camp.  There will be an emphasis on breaking out of pattern picking and beginning to improvise.

Songwriting Workshop

Cliff Eberhart:  One of America’s leading songwriters will be collaborating with Steve Spurgin.  Each will bring his own special slant to the art of songwriting. Steve Spurgin is one of the most prolific and skilled Americana songwriters on earth. Steve is a veteran writer and performer whose new Blue Night Records release continues a career of over three decades of successful songwriting and performing. Steve’s hit songs for Nashville artists have been followed by a string of traditionally themed songs being performed by folk, bluegrass , and Americana artists all over the world. Spurgin is a seasoned workshop presenter, with great insights into helping his workshop attendees realize their desire to compose and develop the skills and discipline of the successful writer.


 Fiddle and Mandolin Techniques

Martin Stevens is an award-winning fiddle and mandolin specialist whose credentials include several years of organizing and coordinating acoustic instrument workshops for children and young people. Combining his performing experience with his formal training in childhood education (he’s an education major at Washington State University), Martin brings a combination of musical skill, a vision for the importance of music in the lives of young people, and specialized training that equips him to instruct both adults and young people in traditional music and acoustic instruments.

Flat Picking Workshop
Dan Crary is a prolific veteran of dozens, “maybe hundreds” of flat picking workshops. Operating from the idea that, one way or another,  “we all teach ourselves how to play,” Dan has designed a practical method for workshop attendees to find their way through the mass  of guitar information and hundreds of different approaches, and find their own best approach. Improvising, powerful accompaniment, quicker learning of traditional tunes and creating arrangements are all part of a Dan Crary workshop. It’s designed to keep guitar players fired up and moving ahead for years to come.

Rant and Raven Morris Workshop

Morris Dance – Learn the quintessential folk dance of England with Rant & Raven Morris.  Dance in sets with rhythmic clashing of sticks and energetic stepping. Please wear clean comfortable dance shoes. (Children 8-15 welcome with an adult.)

Beginners Irish Gaelic Song Workshop   

Beginners Irish Gaelic Song- Learn several simple songs in Irish with Dawn Berg based on Mary McLaughlin’s book “Singing in Irish Gaelic”. All ages are welcome.

Morris Dance for Two- Learn a Morris Dance Jig:

The Nutting Girl, is a dance for one or two dancers and a musician. Dan and Serena Coons with Rant & Raven Morris Dancers will instruct. Bring clean dance shoes and a pair of hankies or bandanas if you can. (Children 8-15 welcome with an adult.)

Dan and Serena Coons have been dancing and playing for Morris Sides for many years, beginning with Bedlam Bells in Tempe, Arizona and continuing on with Rant and Raven Morris in Anchorage.

Arranging with James Lee Stanley

Tired of all your songs sounding the same?   Tired of hearing one approach to guitar accompaniment–strumming?   Come to the guitar orchestration workshop hosted by James Lee Stanley and change your life.  Make new friends, have people actually call YOU for dates.  Extend your life expectancy.  This is the workshop for those who care about making great music  and having a little fun on the way.

James says, “I will show you how to make your songs and arrangements interesting, compelling and entertaining.  Who knows?  You might actually get work after this.”

Performer Collaboration lead by Milo Matthews

Individuals in this workshop will create a piece,  by collaborating their skills into one larger piece to be presented on stage at the end of the festival… This is open to all, festival performers and attendees as well.

Everybody Ukulele

Tim Quinn will be leading a workshop in ukulele playing.  Bring your own or you can borrow one of ours to try out this cool instrument and maybe learn a song or two.  Don’t be shy.  This is great fun.

Dr. Suzanne Summerville Power point Presentation

The presentation will include: Lorraine Koranda (composer and scholar), Native Music in Alaska, The Legend of Denali, and a  children’s presentation about Benny Benson and the Alaska Flag Song.


morris dance Rant uke Quinn arrangement Stanley fingerstyle Cook
Dance Party Hopper mandolin Stevens AKSong Sommervile flatpick Crary
collaboration Milo fingerstyle Brooks Ir Gaelic Berg songwriting Eberhardt/Spurgin


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