Performer List

Performer list for 2024 to be announced in late fall.

2023 “Winter Roots” Performers

Wake Up Robin delights listeners with a variety of musical styles, whether singing moving ballads or cowboy songs, busting out traditional fiddle tunes or original compositions. Wake Up Robin creates magical moments, joyful harmonies, and raw energy.
Joshua Fialkoff fuses pop, funk, jazz, and soul, glues it together with smoky vocals, and sprinkles it with a variety of piano stylings that span the eras. The result: great music that moves your soul and body.
Raised in the cradle of Vermont’s Green Mountains, Mary Wesley found her way to a Burlington contra dance in the fall of 2005 and was immediately hooked.  She was later happy to learn that the tradition is in her DNA – she is the granddaughter of two square dance callers! Mary loves to share her infectious joy for traditional dancing with dancers of all ages and she has something to offer every crowd.
Bare Necessities, a quartet known for its creative interpretations of English country dance tunes, has been playing together since 1980. They have redefined the sound of English country dance music with an improvisatory and playful style.
ZydeGroove is a powerhouse Zydeco band from the Northeast with deep roots in Louisiana. When ZydeGroove’s in town there’s a zydeco party goin’ on.

Cedar has been playing fiddle at the Flurry for many years, and can be found playing for contra dances, leading workshops, and jamming. He has played with the groups Quickstep, Nor’easter, and Cloud Ten, among others.
Veteran contradance fiddler, fiddle teacher, old time banjo player, rhythm guitarist, singer of fun songs, Uncle Dave Macon expert.
Toss the Feathers performs traditional Irish music and songs, as a live, local band that’s fun to dance to. We came together in 2015 and host a monthly session at The Olde English Pub in Albany, with a few invited friends. The band features, Amy Schoch (fiddle & vocals), Dave Smith (bouzouki, banjo & vocals) and David Pease (Irish flutes & whistles).
Johnny & Diane teach all forms of ballroom and partner dance including swing, salsa, West Coast swing and Argentine tango. Johnny also teaches tap dance.
Susie Petrov plays Scottish music on piano and accordion. After finishing her piano studies at the Peabody Conservatory, Susie launched herself into her passion of researching, performing and teaching Scottish dance and music across the USA, and in Canada, Scotland, Netherlands, Germany, France and Italy. She met Peter Macfarlane at a gig at Cardiff Castle in Wales in the early 1990s and it has been her pleasure to play with him regularly since that first meeting long ago!
Strawberry Hill Fiddlers is a unique program based on learning traditional music by ear. Open to violin, viola, cello and bass players, the Fiddlers offer exposure to various non-classical styles, improvisation, singing, dancing and body percussion.
Wheezer & Squeezer are a Vermont-based accordion and bagpipe duo who share music deeply rooted in the traditional dance repertoire of Northern Europe and North America. Lively, vivid selections, played by Jeremiah McLane (piano accordion) and Timothy Cummings (various pipes and whistles), include French bourrées, Breton hanter dros, Scottish reels, and a supplement of original tunes reflecting North American influences. This is a rare combination of Old World instruments and timeless melodies to be savored!
Honoring time-tested traditions, Drive Train hails from Mid-Coast Maine and Western Massachusetts. This power duo will captivate you with music from Appalachia, Bluegrass Traditions, Down East Fiddle music to heartfelt originals and more! Ed Howe: fiddle and vocals (Perpetual Emotion and Breakin Strings!).  Stuart Kenney: 5-string Banjo, Upright Bass and vocals (Stingray’s, Lighthouse, Russet Trio, Red Case Band,and many more great Contra Dance Bands!)

Many years of teaching Cajun, Zydeco and Irish Set dancing in the Albany area. We run the DanceFlurry Orgs’ Cajun/Zydeco series in Albany and teach Irish Set Dancing at the Capital District Irish Cultural Center most Tuesday nights of the year.

NOVA (Contra and Balfolk)
Hailing from Scotland, Québec, and Vermont, although all originally from New England, Nova is a contra dance band that weaves the sounds of fiddle, accordion, and guitar into a rich tapestry of sound. Nova draws from both traditional repertoire and original compositions to create versatile, high energy and driving dance music.
In Chance Bushman’s long career as a dancer, singer, teacher, studio owner, event organizer and entertainer, he has been around the country and all over the world. While his teaching style focuses primarily on social dancing and community building, his dance performances remain firmly rooted in the music. Newly relocated to the Northeast, Chance is happy to be a part of Flurry Festival for the first time.
Mae Wilson (she/they) is a caller and English dance teacher currently based in Ann Arbor, MI. Mae has danced and called across the country and across the Pond. She loves the textures of English dance and music; the sublime combination of movement and sound; and sharing magic moments on the dance floor.
Fiddle tunes, folksongs and fancy footwork will be featured from this acoustic trio – John Kirk is a vocalist, dance caller and instrumental wizard on fiddle mandolin & more, Trish Miller plays banjo, guitar and provides clogging & percussive dance performance & instruction. Dan Berggren is a singer-songwriter that appeals to all ages with his stories of the Adirondacks in song as well as his driving dance guitar rhythm.  This trio have played & performed together for over a generation locally.  Old time music is the basis for their repertoire and they like to mix it up with Celtic tunes, sentimental songs, originals and humorous selections.
Danielle is a dancer, fiddler, and enthochoreologist (dance anthropologist). She grew up steeped in Irish music and dance, and has family connections to Métis and Quebecois dance and fiddle traditions. Danielle is an Irish step-dancer, and a sean-nós (old-style) dancer. She specializes in the old, regional Irish dance master traditions and styles, and their relationship to European and North American dance practices.  Danielle is also the Administrative Manager of the Flurry Festival!
Marcie Van Cleave is the Executive Director of the Folk Arts Center of New England, an organization that promotes the participation in the traditional folk arts, particularly music and dance. Dovetailing with the desk job responsibilities, Marcie finds great joy in teaching international folk dancing, and calling English and American dances to any and all! She has a knack for making people laugh and forget that they don’t know what they’re doing!
Peter has been performing Scottish music for well over three decades. He discovered the music through Scottish dancing, and this informs and infuses his playing. He cut his musical teeth in the hot seat, playing in many of the Scottish dance bands in southern England, learning from master musicians and performing in large parts of England and Wales as well as continental Europe. He co-founded and is musical director of the Champlain Valley Scottish Fiddle Club, and since January 2020 has been musical director of the Vermont Fiddle Orchestra.
Tamarack plays traditional fiddle music for dances and community events in the NY Capital Region and western New England. Having met in a local jam session several years ago, bandmates Jim, Sue and Patricia mix fiddle, flute,  tenor banjo and guitar through a variety of  foot-tapping reels, lively jigs and smooth waltzes. Traditional tunes mixed with original creations round out the group’s repertoire.
Peter Davis is a Saratogian, former
Program Director of the Flurry, eclectic
multi-instrumentalist musician, father,
grandfather, husband, caretaker
of an old hou$e. He loves chord
progressions too.
Capital District’s large community contra dance band
Lori Ayela Wynters, MFA, PhD is a dancer, musician, liberatory theatre practitioner and interdisciplinary artist. She has danced professionally in Philadelphia, Colorado and New Zealand, as well as leading song circles, choirs and Playback Theatre workshops throughout the United States, England, Palestine/Israel and Italy, as an artist in residence for educators, community organizers, conferences and a wide range of performance spaces. Director/Founder of Washington Heights Playback Theatre Company, Lori serves as faculty in Applied Theatre at CUNY and in the Graduate program at Goddard College.
Young Tradition Vermont at Vermont Folklife operates a variety of programs for youth interested and involved in traditional music and dance. The YTV Ambassadors are youth who have participated in the Touring Group, the Youth Commission, Fiddleheads and other programs. To varying degrees, they have all learned from, been mentored by and/or been inspired by Pete Sutherland. Expect a variety of material Pete shared and nurtured with these young friends. More information about YTV at
The Clayfoot Strutters are a self-styled “New England-based Contradance Jam Band” who specialize in fusing the modes and melodies of traditional American immigrant music, progressive pop and modal jazz harmonies with hot dance-floor grooves from the Latin, Swing, Afropop and Zydeco/Cajun worlds.
Bryan Brundige and The Piggly Wigglies formed in 2015 with the mission of getting peoples’ feet movin’ and groovin’. The band touches upon classics and not-so-classics from the early 1900s to the 1940s. The Piggly Wigglies focus primarily on the swing dance community and have played dances in Boston, Kingston, Albany, Rochester, Toronto, Vancouver, Portland and Montreal. The group plays vocally driven swing and blues, with a focus on vocal harmonies that are reminiscent of the Mills Brothers, the Andrews Sisters, Louis Jordan, Cab Calloway, Louis Armstrong and Hoagy Carmichael.
Will Mentor is a contra and square dance caller from Northern Vermont known for his clear teaching, upbeat wit, and relaxed stage presence.
Gaye Fifer has been calling at dance weekends for many years. Her pleasant style and graceful teaching put dancers at ease and set the stage for a great dance experience. She has also taught numerous waltz workshops at virtually every dance weekend in the East.
Jim has been teaching Cajun and Zydeco dance styles for more than 30 years all around the Northeast. He has taught at festivals like, Winterhawk, Grey Fox, Falcon Ridge, Rhythm and Roots, and Strawberry Park’s “Blast form the Bayou” plus many local dances. He’ll have you dancing and feeling good about it in no time. “laissez les bon temps rouler”
Lovely contras, romantic waltzes and couples dances, elegant English, really fun zwiefachers. Historic ballroom social dance from Jane Austen to Ragtime. Argentine tangos, milongas and tango valses a special passion.
Eric Buddington (violin), Bill Matthiesen (piano), Liz Stell (flute)
Heartsease is an all-women, 5-piece English Country Dance band that has been playing in New York’s Capital District for over 20 years. They are the house band for the Rensselaer English Country Dances.
Diane Bell (Fiddle), Vonnie Estes (Keyboard), Steve Fry, Patricia Kernan (Flute, Clarinet), Marilee Urbanczyk (whistles, percussion)
English Country Dance caller, teacher and choreographer.
A brand new trio packed with foot percussion, dance tunes, and songs. NY based fiddler Oona Grady and multi-instrumentalist James Gascoyne partner with pan-traditional percussive step dancer, Danielle Enblom. Together, they create a unique and innovative show with driving rhythms, contemplative arrangement, original compositions, and traditional favorites.
Caller/leader of traditional community dancing (contra, square, international folk) for all ages, especially for non-dancers.
Zorkie Nelson comes from a long line of Ghanaian master drummers. A founding member of the Pan-African Orchestra (PAO) with whom he toured internationally, Zorkie was a member of the group Odadaa!, which toured with Wynton Marsalis. He is a drummer, vocalist, and flute player in the eclectic jazz fusion group HEARD and leads his own group, Gballoi.
Percussion performance group based in Troy, NY playing Brazilian batería style music in the Capital Region and beyond.
(Audrey Jaber (Knuth): fiddle, Stuart Kenney: bass, banjo, Max Newman: guitar)
You know Audrey is performing if the room is buzzing at a higher level. Her fiddling, featured in bands including The Free Raisins, The Gaslight Tinkers, and Wake Up Robin, has electrified dance halls across the US and Europe. Stuart is one of the most in demand upright players on the contra circuit. His flexibility and personality allow him to play with many successful dance bands, including the Stringrays and Wild Asparagus. Max has spent a good portion of his life playing dances across the continent. His guitar playing is refreshing, fun, and creative, and has allowed him to collaborate with a variety of traditional musicians, including the Stringrays. Joining forces, this all-star trio is sure to knock your socks off!

Lois New is a fully certified teacher with the Royal Scottish Country Dance Society (RSCDS). She teaches a weekly Scottish country dance class in Clifton Park. Her class is affiliated with the Boston Branch of the RSCDS.

Harvey Raufman dances in and around the Albany New York area.