Balkan Music &
Dance Workshops
Virtual Camp

While we regret the cancelation of both our Mendocino and Iroquois Springs workshops due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are excited to have presented our first-ever, completely online Virtual Camps, each with three days of immersive classes, live-music performances, and community gatherings. Virtual Camp West Coast (July 17-19, 2020) was a great success, with 350 people registered. Our East Coast Virtual Camp (August 14-16) is now complete, with over 380 attendees!

Registration is now closed for both camps. Stay tuned for more EEFC-sponsored virtual events & classes!


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

Virtual Camp East Coast

August 14 – 16, 2020

 

In 1977, the EEFC offered the first of many wonderful getaway weeklong Balkan Music & Dance Workshops. In 2020, we’re excited to roll with the punches and debut our online edition, which you can enjoy from the comfort of home.
 

Thanks to high-speed internet, we continue to welcome new friends and old to our community of musicians, singers, dancers, and those who love them. Beginners and advanced practitioners will continue to “rub shoulders” while benefiting from the expertise of our extraordinary teaching staff and enjoying bliss-inducing live-music performances. We can’t provide the traditional rustic redwoods setting nor a superb glamping experience in the Catskills, but this Virtual Camp weekend retains our signature style—an immersive learning experience that opens hearts and minds to the beauty of Balkan music, dance, and culture.



The Platform

We’re using an online platform to centralize our gathering for the weekend. In other words, this event is more than just a series of Zoom meetings—we’re creating a digital village. Beginning Wednesday, August 12th, you’ll receive an invitation to join our online space, which, while initially designed to recreate the functionality of community office spaces, is about to receive a Balkan twist. On the surface, it’ll look like a regular office building, but you’ll see rooms named for familiar places like the Front Desk, which will have volunteers ready to take your questions; the Arena, where you’ll enjoy an afternoon class; and the Dance Hall and Kafana, where we’ll gather for live music and dancing. You’ll even be able to locate where your friends are within the map and casually hang out (i.e. video chat) around the Kafana Grill and other organic gathering places.

For official programming, each “room” of our office space contains a direct link to a Zoom meeting where the real magic is taking place. We strongly recommend that you download the latest version of Zoom for the optimal experience. But if you want to take a break from class, there are plenty of areas to relax with friends and catch up contained within our online village.

The Workshop & Program

Virtual Camp runs on Eastern Time from Friday evening, August 14, to late Sunday afternoon, August 16. Classes begin Saturday morning and continue on Sunday. A selection of instrumental, vocal, and dance classes at all levels are offered across ten 75-minute class slots.

The early-evening programs include folklore presentations and group sings with musical accompaniment. Live-music dance parties featuring our world-class staff musicians will delight your feet; and the party continues in the Kafana, with a variety of musical sets by you and your fellow campers.

Families

We welcome families! Children are welcome to participate alongside their parents and guardians in any adult class.

Registration

Registration is closed for this workshop. Stay tuned for more EEFC-sponsored virtual events and classes! EEFC events are announced on the EEFC listserv discussion group, and on our Facebook page, as well as in monthly newsletters that you can subscribe to.


2020 Teachers & Performers


Staff subject to change

 

Jaquetta Bustion

Kids' Intro to Balkan Rhythms

A pianist since childhood, Jaquetta Bustion's love of music began in her earliest school experiences in Philadelphia. She has been a music educator for over twenty years. Whether in public and...Read More

Beth Bahia Cohen

Greek Island Dance Set

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

Polly Tapia Ferber

Balkan Rhythms

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

Michael Ginsburg

Balkan Dance; Greek Brass Band Dance Set

Michael has been director and lead trumpet player of Zlatne Uste Balkan Brass Band since 1983. He accompanied ZU to brass festivals in Guča, Serbia, three times between 1987 and 1990, as well as...Read More

Greek Brass Band

Greek Brass Dance Set

The 2020 East Coast Virtual Camp will feature a Greek brass set performed by members of Kavala Brass Band: Lefteris Bournias, Belle Birchfield, Morgan Clark, and Michael Ginsburg.Read More

Merita Halili

Albanian Dance Set

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

Raif Hyseni

Albanian Dance Set

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

Ralph Iverson

Jam/Teaching Session on Complex Balkan Rhythms

Engineer by day, musician by night, Ralph Iverson has performed for folk dancing since 1985, and has been a regular at the East Coast Balkan Music & Workshop. His main instruments are gadulka...Read More

Aaron Kisslinger

Kids' Class: Simple Song

Bronx-based Aaron Kisslinger is a trombonist, vocalist, multi-instrumentalist, writer, producer and bandleader. They are the creative force behind the solo project AANI and Novi Hitovi ("New...Read More

Nikolay Kolev

Gudulka; Bulgarian Dance Set

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

Donka Koleva

Bulgarian Singing; Bulgarian Dance Set

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

Ahmet Lüleci

Turkish Dance

A native of Turkey, Ahmet Lüleci is an accomplished choreographer, dance teacher and performer as well as a researcher of Anatolian culture. He is currently the artistic director of the...Read More

Matt Moran

Intermediate Tapan; Kids' Intro to Balkan Rhythms

Matt Moran has played tapan (aka goč, bubanj, tupan, daouli, or davul) since way before you could find videos of Balkan music online. He lives in Brooklyn, NY, where he leads Slavic Soul Party!...Read More

Sergiu Popa

Romanian/Moldovan Dance Set

Sergiu Popa was born in Chişinau, Moldova. From a young age, he studied traditional folk and Roma (Gypsy) styles with his father, Ion Popa, himself a well-recognized Romani accordionist in...Read More

Eva Salina

Romani Singing; Romani Serenade

Based in Brooklyn, NY, Eva Salina is a leading interpreter of Eastern European musical traditions, performing and teaching internationally. She attended her first Balkan Music & Dance Workshop...Read More

Corinna Škėma Snyder

'Southern' Group Sing

Corinna Škėma Snyder was 12 when started singing and studying women's music from the Balkans, first with the Cambridge Slavic Chorus, and then with Laduvane, both in the Boston area. She was...Read More

Peter Stan

Romani Serenade

Peter “Perica” Stan is a Serbian/Romanian Roma accordionist known for his playful innovation and soulful, intuitive improvisations. Eva Salina and Peter draw on a long musical friendship,...Read More

Jane Sugarman

Culture Talk on Albanian Music

Jane Sugarman's research focuses on music's role in processes of identity formation, with particular attention to communities in and from Southeastern Europe and the Middle East. Her 1997 book...Read More

Sandy Theodorou

Greek Serenade

Sandy Theodorou is a vocalist, accordion, and laouto player who specializes in traditional Greek regional music and Greek urban rebetika. She was born in Pireas, Greece, and her family roots are...Read More

Zlatne Uste Balkan Brass Band

Balkan Brass Dance Set

The foremost presenters of traditional Balkan brass music in the US, Zlatne Uste's repertoire spans the most important stops in the traditional music of the Balkans. ZU has been a six-time invited...Read More


Schedule


Schedule subject to change. All times in Eastern.


Friday, August 14 (all times in Eastern)
5:30 p.m. — “Campground” opens—time to explore! Orientation at 5:45
6:30 p.m. — Serenade with Eva Salina & Peter Stan
7:00 p.m. — Serenade with Sandy Theodorou & Revma
7:30 p.m. — Dance Party begins
7:30 p.m. — Greek Brass with Lefteris Bournias, Michael Ginsburg, Belle Birchfield, Morgan Clark, & Seido Salifoski
8:15 p.m. — Albanian with Merita Halili & Raif Hyseni
9:00 p.m. — Bulgarian with Donka Koleva & Nikolay Kolev
9:45 p.m. — Kafana opens!

 

Saturday, August 15 (all times in Eastern)
10:00 a.m. — “Campground” opens—breakfast and hangout time. Tech FAQs answered beginning 10:15
11:00 a.m. — Gŭdulka with Nikolay Kolev
11:00 a.m. — Kids’ Simple Song with Aaron Kisslinger
12:30 p.m. — Break for Lunch
1:30 p.m. — Balkan Rhythms with Polly Tapia Ferber
3:00 p.m. — Romani Singing with Eva Salina
3:00 p.m. — Balkan Rhythms for Kids with Jaquetta Bustion & Matt Moran
4:40 p.m. — Snack Break
5:00 p.m. — Turkish Dance with Ahmet Lüleci
5:00 p.m. — Bulgarian Singing with Donka Koleva
6:30 p.m. — Culture Corner on Albanian Music with Jane Sugarman (bring your dinner!)
7:30 p.m. — Dance Party begins
7:30 p.m. — Balkan Brass with Zlatne Uste Balkan Brass Band
8:15 p.m. — Romanian & More with Sergiu Popa
9:00 p.m. — Greek Island with Beth Bahia Cohen
9:45 p.m. — Kafana opens!

 

Sunday, August 16 (all times in Eastern)
10:00 a.m. — “Campground” opens—Sunday Brunch
11:00 a.m. — Balkan Dance with Michael Ginsburg
12:30 p.m. — Break for Lunch/EEFC Board Office Hour
1:30 p.m. — Tapan with Matt Moran
3:00 p.m. — Jam/Teaching Session on Complex Balkan Rhythms with Ralph Iverson
4:30 p.m. — Snack Break
4:40 p.m. – 4:50 p.m. — Therapeutic Treatment: Tuba Bath!
5:00 p.m. — ‘Southern’ Balkan Group Sing with Corinna Snyder, Kristina Vaskys, Adam Good & Matt Moran


FAQs

General

I love what the EEFC is doing. Where can I donate to support more of this work?
You can donate via Paypal or via our website.

 

Will music and video be available?
Class materials, such as lyrics and song files, will be made available to campers at the teacher’s discretion. See the Resources & Materials tab on this page.

 

I’ve rolled up the rugs in my living room and am ready to boogie, but I don’t know any of the dances!
Make sure to get to the dance party on time! Experts will provide brief demonstrations of one or two of the dances featured before each evening set begins.

 

Technical

Do I need a Facebook account to participate?
No. We are using Sococo and Zoom. Beginning Wednesday, August 12, campers will receive a link to an orientation video and will be invited to join the Sococo platform and begin exploring.

 

With which browsers is Sococo compatible?
Only Google Chrome browser is supported by the Sococo web app. Campers have also had success with Microsoft Edge. If you do not want to use Google Chrome, you must download the Sococo desktop app. It has additional features to facilitate use and troubleshooting. However, desktop applications are only available for Windows and macOS, and using the Google Chrome browser is the best option for Linux and other users. If you want to skip Sococo altogether, we provide a “cheat sheet” with links to all the Zoom meetings, so you don’t have to miss a thing!

 

How can I avoid lag on Zoom?

  • Turn off your camera. As much as we love to see you, this will improve the flow of data.
  • Close all other applications on your computer. It’s best if Zoom is the only thing running.
  • Reduce other activities that steal bandwidth like large downloads or family members watching Netflix on the same internet connection during class.


Class Materials & Resources for Download


page updated 8/18/20

 

Greek Serenade with Sandy Theodorou
Friday, 7:00 p.m.
Sing-along song lyrics PDF

 

KAFANA: Trans-Carpathian Jam with Ralph Iverson
Friday, 9:45 p.m.
Music chart collection PDF

 

Nikolay Kolev – Gŭdulka
Saturday, 11:00 a.m.
Kargonski Buenek audio file
Kargonski Buenek – music chart PDF

 

Aaron Kisslinger – Simple Song for Kids
Saturday, 11:00 a.m.
Pjevaj Mi, Pjevaj, Sokole – song lyrics PDF
Pjevaj Mi, Pjevaj, Sokole – music chart PDF
Pjevaj Mi, Pjevaj as sung by Zdenko Nikšić – YouTube link

 

Polly Tapia Ferber – Doumbek/Balkan Rhythms
Saturday, 2:00 p.m.
Doumbek Finger & Hand Positions PDF
Rhythm Patterns PDF

 

Eva Salina – Romani Singing
Saturday, 3:00 p.m.
Bre Čhaveja Dilineja – song lyrics PDF
Bre Čhaveja Dilineja, as sung by Beba Ibišević – audio file

 

Jaquetta Bustion & Matt Moran – Intro to Balkan Rhythms for Kids
Link to Google Slides with class song lyrics

 

Donka Koleva – Bulgarian Singing
Saturday, 5:00 p.m.
Chereshko Medley – song lyrics PDF

 

KAFANA: Ralph & Friends
Saturday, 10:15 p.m.
Sing-along lyrics PDF

 

Michael Ginsburg – Balkan Dance
Sunday, 11:00 a.m.
Vesela Gajda (Romska Gajda) – Grupa Sonata (Štip, Macedonia, live recording 2014) – audio file
Gajda Maleshevska (Bulgaria) – audio file
Veliko Kolo – Banat Tamburitza Orchestra/Tamburaški Zbor “Banat” (U.S., recorded 1950) – audio file
Myatalo Lenche (Bulgaria) – audio file

 

Matt Moran – Tapan
Sunday, 1:30 p.m.
Link to Google Drive class materials collection

 

Ralph Iverson – Jam/Teaching Session on Complex Balkan Rhythms
Sunday, 3:00 p.m.
Link to Dropbox class materials collection

 

“Southern” Balkan Group Sing with Corinna Snyder
Sunday, 5:00 p.m.
EEFC Songbook PDF
Link to YouTube Playlist with featured tunes
Link to doc with page numbers and tunings

 


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We’ve had years to hone our in-person workshops, and we know their ins and outs like the back of our hands. This is a new endeavor for our organization, and while we are doing our best to anticipate your questions, you might have one we haven’t thought of yet!

Contact the EEFC Office if you need tech support or further clarification. Our staff and volunteers are eager to help, and your feedback will help us review and hone our processes. There is no question too small. See you at Camp!