Since 2005, the East Coast edition of the EEFC’s Balkan Music & Dance Workshop has been held in the Catskill Mountains. Join us as we transform the Iroquois Springs site into a village filled with music and dance, friendly conversation, and joyful celebration. Each year we welcome new and old faces, students and teachers, families and friends to gather around our common theme—Balkan music and dance! Whether it is all new to you or you are a seasoned participant you’ll find much to do, to learn, and to experience.
The EEFC’s East Coast Balkan Music & Dance Workshop is held at Iroquois Springs, located near the town of Rock Hill, in the Catskill Mountains. It is an immaculately maintained, spacious site with a pleasant, open country atmosphere. It is located 90 miles NW of New York City and 80 miles NE of Scranton, PA, on NY Route 17. The camp has bunkhouse-style cabins with porches, electricity, abundant storage space, and interior bathrooms. For more privacy there is plenty of space for tents. The site has a lake, swimming pool and attractive common buildings.
The Iroquois Springs workshop runs from Saturday evening to the next Saturday morning. Classes begin Sunday morning, and are held each day through Friday. Following a review session Friday morning, participants have the option to perform in a student concert. The week closes on Friday with a Balkan-style lamb roast and the last of the week’s great evening parties. We have part-time attendance and evening party-only options available.
A broad array of instrumental, vocal, ensemble and dance classes at all levels are offered across five daily 75-minute class slots. See the sample daily schedule. We provide an instrument-lending program to enable new students to get started on harder-to-find village instruments. In the early evenings the program includes folklore presentations and panel discussions, group sings with musical accompaniment, and our fun, community-building fundraising auction. Live music dance parties featuring our world-class staff musicians will delight your feet in the dance hall; and the party continues late into the night in our more intimate cafe-bar and grill, the kafana, with a variety of musical sets by staff and campers, from the ecstatic to the roof-raising.
The workshop features three delicious meals a day and an evening snack, with selections to please both omnivore and vegetarian tastes.
We welcome families! The Iroquois Springs workshop features two class periods a day in children's activities, a singing class for younger voices, and a the Čoček Nation youth band. Children are also welcome and encouraged to take adult classes, according to their capabilities. Find more info on Kids at Camp.
A few partial-tuition-waiver work exchanges may be available for full-week participants. Please contact the Iroquois Springs Workshop Site Manager as soon as possible, but no later than May 31, 2017, if you wish to be considered for a work exchange. The Site Manager will follow up on individual work exchange requests by June 15, 2017.
Online registration is open (see red "Register Now" button above). Workshop updates will be announced through our E-newsletter (sign-up if you haven’t already), the EEFC listserv, and on our Facebook page.
NOTE: Staff, class, and class level listings are subject to update and change.
Can’t come for the week? We welcome you to join us for an evening or an overnight. Please see below for the schedule of bands.
Come for dinner, early evening activities, the dance party and the late-night kafana. Then spend the night and enjoy breakfast before you hit the road!
Here's how it works:
6:30 p.m.: Arrive at our lovely Catskills site in time for a delicious dinner (see Directions tab above). Before you get in the dinner line, check in at the Front Desk in the Dance Hall/Theater and set up your bunk.
At 8:00 p.m. take in a folklore presentation, singalong, or join in our auction. Dancing to live music begins in the main hall generally around 9:00.
Our Kafana in the woods is a bar and a club, a grill and a pub, and a place where much music and merriment happens into the wee hours. Stay as long as you like!
Sleep in a bunk with the bedding you brought from home.
Roll out of bed, have breakfast by 9:30 a.m., and hit the trail by 10.
All this can be yours for just $130. Such a bargain! A cheap hotel in Monticello is about $85 and contains no options for gajda, rakija, čočeks, or ćevapčići!
Live in the area? Join us for a fabulous evening of live music and dancing.
Admission includes the evening dance party, a delicious complimentary evening snack, as well as late-night kafana activities until 2:30 a.m. No overnight accommodations are available for partygoers; please make sure you make provisions for getting home safely after the party (or consider registering for our B&B option above!).
Arrive anytime after 8 p.m. and pay the $35 per person fee at the Front Desk in the Dance Hall/Theater. The dance party generally starts at 9 p.m. Please make your reservations by email any day or time before 6 p.m. of the day of arrival. It is also possible to attend the Friday Lamb Roast. The cost for this event is $50, and it includes dinner and the evening party (no overnight accommodations).
To register for an evening party or Dine & Dance—Bed & Breakfast, call us at 510/219-5462, OR email the EEFC Office—at least 24 hours before the night you wish to stay over for B&B; or any day or time before 6 p.m. of the desired day for an evening party. Or, use our online form to register for the Bed & Breakfast option. See the red "Register Now" button above.
Tell us your name(s), which night(s) you will be attending, and whether you're coming just for the party or will be taking the B&B option. Please make sure your reservation has been confirmed before heading over to Iroquois Springs. Whichever way you choose to contact us, please know that we might not be able to get back to you right away.
Payment. Please be prepared to pay your full fee at the Front Desk when you arrive using cash, credit card, or check.
Please note schedule is subject to change
Saturday, August 5
Balkan Sampler Evening, featuring short sets with Zlatne Uste & Demiran Ćerimović, Accordion with Mensur Hatić, Zurli with Milo Destanovski and Jessica Ruiz, Greek with Pontic Firebird
Sunday, August 6
Culture: The Macedonian Čalgija Tradition with Raim Baki, Husref Said & Prof. Sonia Tamar Seeman
Monday, August 7
Group Sing: "Southern" Balkan with Lauren Brody & Carol Silverman
Macedonian Čalgija—Raim Baki, Husref Said & friends
Greek—Ruth Hunter & Christos Govetas
Tuesday, August 8
Auction Night (dance party begins around 10:00 p.m.)
Macedonian Zurli—Milo Destanovski, Jessica Ruiz & Jerry Kisslinger
Cretan Greek—special guest Chris Fasarakis
Greek Island & Pontic—Beth Bahia Cohen
Wednesday, August 9
Culture: South Serbian Brass Traditions with Demiran Ćerimović & Alex Marković
Rhodope Sing-Along—Mark Levy, Donka Koleva & Gajda Mafia
Tamburica—Ray Ranic & Ljubomir Živkov
Thursday, August 10
Group Sing: "Northern" Balkan with Henry Goldberg, Ray Ranic & Ljubomir Živkov & tamburaši
Macedonian Village—Mark Levy, Dragi Spasovski & Friends
Serbian Brass—Demiran Ćerimović
Friday, August 11
Student Ensembles play for your dancing pleasure (dance party begins at 8:00 p.m.)