Scandia Festival 2003
Swedish Dance Teachers Ewa & Tommy Englund, with Fiddler Bengt Wittgren.
Rickard Näslin, from Jämtland, Sweden, to Teach Fiddle Classes.
Scandia Festival 2003 is set for February 14 - 16 at Hermann Sons Hall in Petaluma, CA, just north of San Francisco.
Ewa & Tommy Englund are favorite Swedish dance teachers and need little introduction. Over the years they’ve taught many popular dances, including those of their native Hälsingland and of Gästrikland where they live. They have a clear presentation and pleasing dance style, always adding that extra something to give a dance its essence. After earning their Big Silver in Polskadans in the 80s, both now act as judges for dance events. Ewa is a judge for the Polskadans Medal testing and Tommy for the Hälsingehambo contest.
Bengt Wittgren grew up in a folk dancing family in Southern Dalarna. He became interested in playing fiddle in his teens and soon joined the Södra Dalarna Spelmanslag led by Ingvar Norman. Bengt accompanied Ingvar to spelmansstämmor and played for Ingvar's polska classes. He edited and helped publish 1700 of Ingvar's collected tunes in two volumes; Låtar från Dalarnes Bergslag. Bengt became a Riksspelman 1983. He is also an accomplished dancer, having earned his Big Silver in Polskadans. Bengt is active in Swedish music and dance organizations and has taught fiddle and dance for over 20 years. He is also a Hälsingehambo contest judge.
Rickard Näslin was born and raised in Östersund, Sweden. His active involvement with the music of Jämtland goes back to 1974. He is a founder of the popular folk group Leikstulaget. Since the recording of "Som fjällbäckens porlande" by this group, Rickard has participated in many recordings of Jämtland music. He has published three books of Jämtländsk fiddle music. Rickard founded and leads the Östersund Spelmanslag. Over the years he has received many prizes and honors for his contributions to Jämtlandsk folk music. In 1998, he was also awarded the Lapp-Nils medal, the Heimbydas Spelmans association's highest honor. Rickard became a Riksspelman 1978.
Flyers are available at SF area Scandinavian dance classes. Out of area folks and dancers currently not attending classes may contact any of the following people for info: Brooke Babcock: <forbrooke@>, (415) 334-3455; Nobi Kurotori: <>, (650) 851-7077; Jane & Frank Tripi: <fjtripi@>, (510) 654-3636; or Mary Korn & Mark Wegner: <>, (510) 527-9209. Information and applications are also available on the NCS website at Participation in dance workshops is by pre-registration only. Men are asked to register early. The number of dancers is limited due to space, so early registration is encouraged for all.
The full package costs $80 for dancers, $60 for fiddlers. Checks for the dance workshop should be made to “Scandia Festival” and sent with a completed application to Brooke Babcock, 55 Chumasero Dr., #12 E, San Francisco, CA 94132.
Fiddlers should mail applications and payments (make checks to "Scandia Festival") to Fred Bialy, 1925 Hudson St., El Cerrito, CA 94530. Part time registration is available for fiddlers. Teaching will be at two levels: "Sonic" and "Supersonic." Contact Fred Bialy for information or special requests at <> or (510) 215-5974.
Email contacts are preferred; if you phone, please remember that all live in the Pacific Standard Time zone. §

IMPORTANT INFO: South Bay Dance makes permanent change
The South Bay monthly Scandinavian Dance party is making a permanent change in monthly meeting time, from 3rd Saturday of each month to the 1st Saturday of each month, beginning in January, 2003. The group will continue to meet at its normal meeting place, the 1st United Methodist Church of Palo Alto, 625 Hamilton Ave. §

It’s That Time of Year Again …
Yes, it’s that time of year again, when thoughts turn to gifts and taxes. And memberships in various organizations. Please look over the Questionaire inside the back cover to make sure your address information is up to date. While you’re at it, think about what you’d like to see the organization do for you, and what you might do for us. Sometimes it takes awhile to organize events, but your suggestions are all considered, and often acted upon.
Last but not least - don’t forget to donate. §

A note from your editor …
If you haven’t received an NCS Newsletter in the past year, it’s not that we’ve lost your address. Your editor (i.e., me) has been feeling exceptionally burnt out, and would like to make heartfelt apologies for this long lapse.
Included in this issue are a couple of articles I’d originally planned for last spring (about the Willow Flute, and about Astrid Lindgren’s death last January). I find my biggest challenge is gathering calendar information. It always means many phone calls, emails, and web searches. I plan to be calling on some of you to help me with this. I hope to rotate the job among several people during the year so no one feels exceptionally over- burdened.
Thanks for your support,
Sarah Kirton

Scandia Camp Mendocino, 2003
Next summer’s Scandia Camp Mendocino, June 14 - 21, on California’s northern coast, will feature the dance and music of Valdres, Norway, along with a review of Jämtland's dances.
Knut Aastad Bråten and Anne Kjellfrid Nøbben will be teaching Valdres springar, accompanied by hardingfele players Tore Bolstad and Jan Beitohaugen Granli. Also coming, from Sweden, Ewa and Tommy Englund will review dances previously taught by the Karlholms, accompanied by musicians Agneta Wiberg-Hällström and Anders Hällström. Cajsa Ekstav, a nyckelharpa player from Vendels parish in Upland, will also be on hand. All five musicians will also teach music classes.
Knut Aastad Bråten, born and raised in Valdres, started playing folk music and dancing springar as a college student. He has studied with Valdres’ finest dancers and is now a member of the “A” class of dancers. In addition, Knut is accomplished on langeleik, a Norwegian in-strument resembling the Appalachian dulcimer. He cur-rently teaches ethnology in Valdres schools, and also teaches Valdresspringar to young people.
Anne Kjellfrid Nøbben, also born and raised in Valdres and also an “A” class dancer, grew up with music and dance in her family. Her grandfather was a folksinger, and following in his footsteps, Anne Kjellfrid is also an accomplished singer. She learned to dance springar both from courses and from joining in at dance at events. Anne Kjellfrid says, “In real life”, I am one of two teachers in the Heggebøskule teaching grades 1 through 4.
Tore Bolstad grew up on a farm in Øystre Slidre. He has played hardingfele since he was nine years old and says that traditional music takes up most of his time! Tore learned to play from local fiddlers, among them his grand-father Torgeir and Torgeir’s more famous brother Torliev Bolstad. In addition, Tore is a dancer and has studied with Knut Steinsrud among others. Tore lives in Aas where he teaches physiology in the Dept. of Animal Science at the Agricultural University.
Jan Beitohaugen Granli began fiddling as a young boy. He is a descendant of the famous Valdres fiddlers Nils Beitohaugen and his son Engebret. Jan is carrying on the family tradition by studying recordings of Engebret. Jan has been a music student at Rauland Academy and is currently studying at the Ole Bull Academy in Voss.
From Sweden
Ewa and Tommy Englund are favorite dance teachers both in the USA and Sweden. They are appreciated for their clear presentations and warmth to participants. Born in Hälsingland, and residing in Sandviken, Gästrikland, they have both earned big silver medals for polska dancing, and have won the Hälsinge Hambo Contest four times. They both serve as judges for various dance events.
Cajsa Ekstav, from Vendels parish in Uppland, is a multi-talented musician who plays fiddle, nyckelharpa and who also sings. She received the title of Riksspelman in 1990. Her repertoire includes tunes from Vendel’s most famous nyckelharpa player, the legendary Eric Sahlström. Cajsa has traveled extensively performing and teaching the music of Uppland.
Agneta Wiberg-Hällström and Anders Hällström reside in Påläng, Norbotten not far from the Finnish border. They work as violin and folk music teachers, have played for the Föllinge summer course for ten years, and spent 16 years teaching at a folk music camp for young people. Agneta is a Riksspelman and folksinger with traditional influences from Jämtland and Medelpad. Anders is a multi-instrumentalist who has specialized mostly in violin and accordion, but also plays a number of other instruments. Both Agneta and Anders studied at Malung's folkhögskule and the Royal Academy of Music in Stockholm. Together Anders and Agneta received the “large gold” award for duet playing from the Medelpad folk musicians association.
Rounding out the music staff will be Sarah Kirton and Peter Michaelsen. Sarah will assist newer musicians on hardingfele and play at the evening dance parties. Sarah lives in the San Francisco Bay Area where she teaches both fiddle and hardingfele. She has a special interest in the music of Southern Sweden, Jämtland, and Valdres. She has spent over a year in Norway studying Valdres hardingfele tradition, and has also studied in Sweden. Peter is an accomplished folk musician and Scandinavian fiddler from Seattle who has studied ex-tensively in Sweden. In the summer of 2002, he was awarded the Zorn bronze medal for his playing of Rättvik tunes. He will lead afternoon practice sessions and a nightly allspel. His powerful style, broad repertoire and dance experience inspires musicians and dancers alike.
Practical Stuff… … …
Scandia Camp Mendocino takes place in a lovely redwood forest about 11 miles inland from the town of Mendocino, California. The days are filled with dance, music, and culture sessions; evenings are party time. Accommodations are rustic wooden cabins in the forest and the food is delicious.
Tentative fees are: $535 per dancer or musician, $310 per Work Scholarship (8 available). Deposits: Send $150.00 per person with the application form. All deposits received by January 15, 2003 will receive equal consideration. To maximize your chance of being accepted immediately, send your deposit early. Final payments are due May 1, 2003. For registrations post-marked after May 1, 2003, the fee is $560 per camper - to be paid in full at that time.
Scandia Camp Mendocino offers five $50.00 registration discounts to participants attending for the first time. All registrations from new Scandia Campers received by January 15th, 2003 will be put into a drawing for the discounts. Winners will be notified.
For more information and to get on the mailing list for applications, write to: Scandia Camp Mendocino, 393 Gravatt Drive, Berkeley, CA 94705 or contact Kay Loughman: <>, (510) 841-7428 [Pacific time zone] or Roo Lester: <DancingRoo@> or (630) 920-0159 [Central time zone]. §

Astrid Lindgren — a Brief Biography by Carolyn Hunt
Astrid Lindgren, who died January 28, 2002 at age 94, represents an aspect of Swedish culture that doesn’t often appear on these pages: literature.
The most published of all Swedish writers, she is known first of all for her Pippi Longstocking stories, about the red haired girl who lived alone in a ramshackle house with a monkey and a horse and other souvenirs of her sea-captain father’s travels (including a very useful bag of gold coins), and was very inventive (as well as strong and loyal and kind and generous). Adults were wary of Pippi: she never went to school, she mocked grown-ups and their fine cultured ways, and above all she lacked adult guidance. But Pippi has always been a great hit with children, and the books have been translated into more than 50 languages.
San Francisco Chronicle columnist Adair Lara wrote, “Pippi was pure anarchy. She was a child who had been liberated from childhood.... We needed a hero, and along came a little girl with red hair and mismatched stockings who was strong enough to lift a horse onto her porch when she felt like it.... Yet I never yearned to be Pippi Longstocking. I knew even at her age, 9, that it was not really fun to live all by yourself and not even go to school. No one who read "Pippi" truly wanted to be her; we wanted to visit her, and then come home.... Her image formed not just part of my childhood, but, I think, part of my character. I was a girl, and girls could lift horses.”
Other writing
Astrid Lindgren’s output of more than 100 works consisted of much more than Pippi. She wrote about Emil in Lönneberga, Ronja the Robber’s Daughter, The Brothers Lionheart. She wrote other stories, fables, novels, plays, screen-plays, poetry, songbooks, and two books about motor trips in Sweden. About 40 films and TV series have been made from her writings. Although most of her writing for children was light-hearted and fun, she has two collections of fairy tales that often contain melancholy themes, dealing with poverty and death, these too being part of the condition of life. She said, “I don’t write books for children. I write books for the child I am myself. I write about things that are dear to me—trees and houses and nature—just to please myself.” And: “Everything I write has really taken its hue from my own experience, perhaps not directly, but indirectly, like some kind of breeding ground from which the books grow.”
Later in her life she began to write about other issues that concerned her. In 1976 a satiric story by Astrid about the high income tax rate was printed in the newspaper. Later that year the government was voted out, after 40 years in power, for which some gave her the credit.
She wrote numerous letters protesting the treatment of farm animals in Sweden; pigs and chickens were kept in cages so small that in some cases they couldn’t move. In 1987 a new animal protection law was passed that gave cattle, pigs, chickens natural grazing rights and eliminated the use of drugs and hormones except for medical pur-poses. The prime minister called it “Lex Astrid”, and it’s known now as the Lindgren Law.
Early life
Astrid Ericsson was born in 1907 on the farm known as Näs near Vimmerby in Småland, where the family had farmed for several generations, the traditional rural setting that she portrayed so well. A number of streets in Vimmerby today are named for characters in the Lindgren books. She and her three siblings became fa-miliar with the realities of life on a farm and with the lives of the workers who came to the farm. They loved the stories their father told about his childhood. They often acted out stories from their own reading. Astrid’s school friends predicted that she would be a great writer herself one day. “That scared me so much that I made a firm decision never to write a book,” she wrote later.
At the age of 19, pregnant and unwed, she left the farm (probably under quite a cloud) and went to Stockholm. She attended secretarial school and became an office worker to support herself and her son Lars. In 1931 she married Sture Lindgren, whom she had met at work, and in 1934 their daughter Karin was born.
Karin was 7, ill with pneumonia and asking for stories, and Astrid ran out of ideas. “Tell me about Pippi Longstocking,” Karin suggested, the name coming from the desperation of the moment. So Astrid began, and the stories got as wild as they needed to be to entertain a restless child, and in time to entertain Karin’s friends as well. In 1945 Astrid herself was in bed, waiting for a broken ankle to heal, when she began to write down the Pippi stories; the completed manuscript was a gift to Karin for her 10th birthday.
She sent the Pippi stories off to a publisher and wrote another story, “Britt-Mari Bares her Heart”, which she sent to the publisher Rabén and Sjögren for a literature contest. Pippi was rejected, but Britt-Mari won second prize. The following year she submitted Pippi to the contest and won first prize. Rabén and Sjögren publish-ed the book and soon after gave Astrid a job as editor in their children’s division; she worked there until 1970. Among other assignments, she selected American child-ren’s books for translation into Swedish. Rabén and Sjögren has become a major publisher of children’s books in Sweden.
Having at last overcome her determination not to write, she continued to write. Before going to work, she wrote in bed in the mornings, using the shorthand learned in secretarial school. “When I write, I lie in bed... and I have the feeling that nothing outside exists—I’m just on my bed in my little room, and I can go and meet the people I want to.” Her work as writer and editor supported the family after her husband’s death in 1952. She wrote until 1992, when her eyesight became too limiting. (Her son Lars died in 1986; Karin is still alive.)
The list of honors that Astrid Lindgren has received goes on for a few pages; here are just a few. In 1958 she was awarded the Hans Christian Andersen medal, “the ultimate accolade for an author of children’s books”. In 1979 she received the Peace Prize of the German Book Trade, a rare honor for children’s writer. In 1988 the Animal Protection Act in Sweden, known as theLindgren Law was enacted. In 1989 she was awarded the Albert Schweitzer Medal of the United States Animal Welfare Institute. In 1987 in honor of her 80th birthday, a series of 49 commemorative stamps was issued, and the West German school system proclaimed the “Official Astrid Lindgren Year.” In 1996 a postage stamp was issued in her honor. The Astrid Lindgren Childrens Hospital opened 1998, one of N. Europe’s largest medical clinics for young people, named for her in honor of her campaigns for childrens rights.
Pippi Longstocking has sold a million copies in Sweden alone, in itself a fitting monument to such a beloved figure.
• Obituary by Kim Gamel, Associated Press, in the San Francisco Chronicle & the San Jose Mercury News, 1/29/02.
• Obituary inVestkusten, Tidning för Svenskarna på Stillehavskusten.
Writers, Shaun Hunter, 1998, Crabtree Publishing Company, ISBN 0-7787-0005-4 .
• Contemporary Authors.
• Adair Lara in the San Francisco Chronicle, 1/31/02.
• Web site <> .
• Web site <> . §

NCS Annual Report Published
The Northern California Spelmanslag’s Annual Report, which was, until last year published in this newsletter, will instead be posted on the spelmanslag webpage at: <>. This report includes the organization’s statement of purpose, a description of our member groups, a list of officers and how to contact them, the year’s financial statement, and a list of the year’s activities. The Northern California Spelmanslag was founded in 1990. This newsletter goes nationwide; the spelmanslag itself serves primarily those in the San Francisco Bay Area and northern California who are interested in Scandinavian Music and Dance. §

Plans Afoot for April Workshop
Musicians Cajsa Ekstav and Bo Larsson will be visiting the Bay Area before they go to Seatttle for Spring Dance this April. Plans are currently being made for a workshop and dance in Palo Alto on the third weekend of April, the 19th and 20th.
Bo Larsson last visited the Bay Area about 10 years ago with his playing partner Leif Alpsjö. He plays music from his native Uppland, as well as Bingjö tunes in the tradition of his uncle Viksta Lassa, who was the playing partner of the famous Bingsjö fiddler Hjort Anders.
Cajsa Ekstav, from Vendels parish in Uppland, is a multi-talented musician who plays fiddle, nyckelharpa and who also sings. She received the title of Riksspelman in 1990. Her repertoire includes tunes from Vendel’s most famous nyckelharpa player, the legendary Eric Sahlström. Cajsa has traveled exten-sively performing and teaching the music of Uppland.
Details are not yet complete, but mark that weekend on your calendar. Their visit is sponsored by the Northern California Spelmanslag.

Finnish Dance Workshop with Milla Korja & Petri Kauppinen
Milla Korja
and Petri Kauppinen, professional dance instructors from Finland, have been living in the Los Angeles area while working on advanced degrees in dance at UC Irvine. They will return to Finland in March, but will give a last Northern California work-shop on Saturday, January 18th, 2003 at the Gladys Lemmons Senior Center, 450 East A Street, Oakdale, CA. Events are planned from 10 AM to 11:30 PM. The cost is $35 for the entire day, or $10 per event (advanced workshop: 10-12; social dance workshop: 2 - 4; dinner: 5 - 6:30; and dance performance and dance party: 7 - 11:30). For information, call Janet Kenworthy at (209) 578-5250 or Mark Ward at (209) 669-9096. Registration forms will also be available on the NCS webpage at  Completed applications should be sent to David Raube, 4455 Roeding Rd, Ceres, CA 95307.
And in Oakland — Korja and Petri will visit the Scandiandans regular Thursday night, Jan. 23rd in Oakland. §

Scandiadans Late New Year’s Potluck & Party
– with live music
Thursday, January 2, 2003, $4, 5:30 - 10 pm, (dancing to start ~ 7 pm) Oakland Nature Friends, 3115 Butters Dr., Oakland CA
Directions: take Hwy 13 to Joaquin Miller Rd, east 2 blks , rt onto Butters Dr., driveway is to rt after 0.4 mi
Contact: Jane or Frank Tripi, (510) 654 - 3636, email: <>

Check Out Our Webpage! -

If you haven't investigated the NCS webpage at
you really ought to check it out. We maintain it for our members and others interested in Scandinavian dance and selected cultural activities in Northern California. We also list information about events in other areas of the US and Scandinavia which we feel will be of interest to our community.

On our webpage you can find:
(The "boring" stuff)
• current and past issues of this newsletter,
• information about the NCS and its purpose,
• Annual Reports - required for all California non-profit organizations,
• a list of our Organizational Affiliations

(The practical stuff)
• a list of NCS officers and board members, and how to contact them,

(How to propose an idea or get NCS sponsorship for an event)
• NCS Guidelines for Discussions and Decisions,
• NCS Board Guidelines for Proposals for Events,

(Great information)
• a Calendar of events for Northern California, the US, & Scandinavia - calendars are updated as information arrives,
• a list of web-links to webpages in the US & Scandinavia. These linked-to pages are full of useful information for planning trips, learning new music or dances, or finding out about Scandinavian culture and customs. §