Balkan Music &
Dance Workshops

Every summer the EEFC presents two week-long summer camps.

June 22 – 29, 2019
More info…

August 10 – 17, 2019
More info…


Scholarships

We award several full and partial scholarships to each workshop every year.
Apply for one.


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Kids at Camp!

A great experience for families. Get the scoop to ensure everyone has a blast!


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Get the FAQs

Find out almost everything you always wanted to know about the EEFC’s Balkan camps.
FAQs

East Coast Balkan Music & Dance Workshop

Iroquois Springs, Rock Hill, NY
August 10 – 17, 2019

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.

 


East Coast Camp at Iroquois SpringsThe Facility

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 Workshop

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.

East Coast Camp Workshop ClassThe Program

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.

Food

The workshop features three delicious meals a day and an evening snack, with selections to please both omnivore and vegetarian tastes.

Families

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.

Work Exchanges

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, if you wish to be considered for a work exchange. The Site Manager will follow up on individual work exchange requests by June 15.

Registration and Other Information

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.

2019 Teachers

Our 2019 teaching staff is still in process. More to come soon! Please check back or sign up for the EEFC email newsletter for updates.

Staff, class, and class level listings are subject to update and change.

Dance

Milo Destanovski

Macedonian Dance

Milo Destanovski is a Macedonian Rom choreographer and musician. He hails from the most respected family of zurla players in eastern Macedonia and carries on a tradition of zurla and tapan playing...Read More

Joe Kaloyanides Graziosi

Greek Dance

Joseph Kaloyanides Graziosi was born and raised in the greater Boston area. Of Greek and Italian ancestry, Joe was exposed at an early age to Greek music and dance through both family contacts and...Read More

Petur Iliev

Bulgarian Dance

Petur Iliev is a Bulgarian-born dancer and choreographer whose career is deeply steeped in the rich folk dance traditions of his family. He started dancing at the age of five in his father's dance...Read More

Instruments & Ensembles

Paul Brown

House Bassist (non-teaching)

Paul Brown has been playing music for 44 years, studying bass and improvisation at the Berklee College of Music in Boston, and oud and makam with Haig Manoukian and Necati Çelik. Comfortable in...Read More

Marin Chalamov

Tupan

Marin Chalamov is from the Thracian town of Karlovo, where he began his musical career at age 15 as drummer and tupan player for the Srednogorie ensemble. Over the years he has played with...Read More

Beth Bahia Cohen

Greek Violin, Greek Ensemble

Beth Bahia Cohen is of Syrian Jewish and Russian Jewish heritage. Inspired early by the sounds she heard at family gatherings, she later studied with master musicians from Hungary, Greece, Turkey...Read More

Milo Destanovski

Macedonian Village Ensemble

Milo Destanovski is a Macedonian Rom choreographer and musician. He hails from the most respected family of zurla players in eastern Macedonia and carries on a tradition of zurla and tapan playing...Read More

Polly Tapia Ferber

Doumbek

Percussionist Polly Tapia Ferber is a music educator, performer, and recording artist who specializes in hand percussion from the Middle East, Turkey, North Africa, the Balkans, and Spanish...Read More

Raif Hyseni

Albanian Accordion, Albanian/Kosovar Ensemble

Raif Hyseni hails from The Republic of Kosova, which has a large Albanian majority. He grew up in the town of Mitrovicë, where he studied accordion at music school and performed in amateur...Read More

Temelko Ivanov

Bulgarian Kaval

Bio coming soon!Read More

Nikolay Kodzhabashev

Bulgarian Tambura

Bio coming soon!Read More

Nikolay Kolev

Gudulka, Bitov Ensemble

Nikolay Kolev, a native of the Thracian Rose Valley village of Karavelovo, has been playing gudulka since age 10. After graduating from the National School of Folk Arts in Shiroka Lŭka, Bulgaria,...Read More

Jessica Ruiz

Zurla, Macedonian Village Ensemble

Initially trained as a classical clarinetist, Jessica Ruiz has been playing world music for more than 15 years. Now based in Detroit, she was previously an active member of the Los Angeles klezmer...Read More

John "Yianni" Roussos

Santouri

John "Yianni" Roussos has performed on the santouri in the northeastern U.S. since 1972. He played for many years with the Pericles Halkias Family Orchestra in New York City and more recently with...Read More

Singing

Merita Halili

Albanian Singing

Merita Halili is one of Albania’s top performers. Born in the capital city of Tiranë, Merita grew up singing the lyric songs of her native region of Central Albania. Her nationwide debut came...Read More

Donka Koleva

Bulgarian Singing

Donka Koleva is a vocalist prized for her rich, clear and melodic voice. Also a graduate of the Folklore High School in Shiroka Luka, she worked as a soloist with the Sliven Ensemble for three...Read More

Eva Salina

Romani Singing

Based in Brooklyn, NY, for the last ten years, Eva Salina is a leading interpreter of Eastern European musical traditions, performing and teaching internationally. She attended her first Balkan...Read More

For the Kids

Sarah Ferholt

Kids'/Youth Band Čoček Nation

Sarah Ferholt currently performs with Zlatne Uste Balkan Brass Band, and teaches in the New York City public schools. She is also an MCAT certified teacher of...Read More

Kristina Vaskys

Kids'/Youth Singing

Kristina Vaskys has taught general and choral music in New York City independent schools for 10 years. She currently sings with Accord Treble Choir and is a singer/instrumentalist in Macedonian...Read More

Getting to Iroquois Springs

 
From Manhattan, Westchester, Long Island:

  • New York State Thruway North (87N)
  • Exit 16 (Harriman) to
  • Route 17 West (future 86)
  • Exit 110 (Wanaksink Lake)
  • Take a left at the stop sign off the exit
  • Take a right at the fork (after the blinking light)
  • This becomes Bowers Road and leads directly into camp.

 
From New Jersey, Philadelphia & Mid-Atlantic States:

  • Take I-95 North to
  • Garden State Parkway to
  • New York State Thruway North (87N)
  • Exit 16 (Harriman) to
  • Route 17 West (future 86)
  • Exit 110 (Wanaksink Lake)
  • Take a left at the stop sign off the exit
  • Take a right at the fork (after the blinking light)
  • This becomes Bowers Road and leads directly into camp.

 
From the Boston area:

  • Take the Mass. Turnpike West to Sturbridge
  • take I-84 West to Walkill/Middleton NY
  • take Route 17 West (future 86)
  • Exit 110 (Wanaksink Lake)
  • Take a left at the stop sign off the exit
  • Take a right at the fork (after the blinking light)
  • This becomes Bowers Road and leads directly into camp.
  • From Albany & Points North:
  • New York State Thruway South (87S) to Newburgh
  • Take I-84 West to Walkill/Middleton NY
  • Take Route 17 West (future 86)
  • Route 17 West (future 86)
  • Exit 110 (Wanaksink Lake)
  • Take a left at the stop sign off the exit
  • Take a right at the fork (after the blinking light)
  • This becomes Bowers Road and leads directly into camp.

 
From Western New York State:

  • Route 17 East to
  • Exit 109 (Rock Hill)
  • Make a left at the end of the exit ramp
  • Make a right at the stop sign onto Rock Hill Road
  • Go about one mile
  • Make a left at the fork at the stop sign onto Bowers Road.

[/mytab]

Dine & Dance—Bed & Breakfast

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!

 

HOW TO REGISTER

Use our online form to register for the Bed & Breakfast option. See the red “Register Now” button above.

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).

 

HOW TO REGISTER

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.

Sample Evening Party Schedule

Saturday
Dance
Balkan Sampler Evening, featuring short sets with Zlatne Uste & Nizo Alimov, Greek Zournadhes with the Govetas Family, Bulgarian with Nikolay Kolev and friends, Greek with Pontic Firebird

Sunday
Group Sing: “Southern” Balkan with Lauren Brody & Carol Silverman
Dance
Albanian—Merita Halili & Raif Hyseni
Greek Brass—Kavala

Monday
Culture: Our Relationships to Balkan Culture, Music & Dance with Carol Silverman
Dance
Pontic—special guest Chris Tiktapanidis
Bulgarian—Valeri Georgiev

Tuesday
Auction Night (dance party begins around 10:00 p.m.)
Dance
Greek—Zournadhes & Pan-Greek—Ruth Hunter, Christos Govetas & special guest Eleni Govetas

Wednesday
Culture: Raif Hyseni’s Montclair Albanian Ensemble
Dance
Rhodope Sing-Along—Mark Levy, Donka Koleva & Gajda Mafia
Bulgarian—Nikolay Kolev
Macedonian Village—Mark Levy, Vedran Boškovski

Thursday
Group Sing: “Northern” Balkan with Henry Goldberg, & Ljubomir Živkov & friends
Dance
Brass—Nizo Alimov
Greek—Beth Bahia Cohen

Friday
Student Ensembles play for your dancing pleasure (dance party begins at 8:00 p.m.)