What a Great Festival!


  Also Check out http://www.seldoviamusicfestival.wordpress.com

Seldovia Arts Council would like to thank all those who did such a great job on the Seldovia Summer Solstice Music Festival.  It was a great success, well attended and beautiful to listen to.
The spirit of the festival was best seen at the beginning and the end of the festival.  Each night the music was ushered in by Aliah Wheeler and Brian Slover on their Native American Flutes. The notes, so artfully made, soared around the room transforming it.  The evening performances were equally special. Our local group Billy Goat rounded out the Friday night performance with great harmonies.  Saturday night a rousing all-performer ending chorus of “Summertime” was returned by an equally enthusiastic return chorus by the audience, which many of the performers said sent chills up their spines.

Highlights of the festival for me included the sunny days making outdoor jamming fun,  the high quality workshops that were so well attended this year, and  the shows themselves. Funny, dramatic, beautiful, each of the acts were a special treat.

The Headliners:  James Lee Stanley and Cliff Eberhardt and

Dan Crary with Thunderation (Steve Spurgin and Marting Stevens)  were icing on the cake!

Many thanks to all of the performers, volunteers and sponsors and Seldovia and Homer businesses and private families that came to aide, providing housing, transportation, food and more for this event. .  Each of your efforts is greatly appreciated and needed.

Here are some thank yous that we at the Seldovia Arts Council received and appreciated.

Thank You

Susan Mumma and The Seldovia Arts Council, and thank you to all the wonderful musicians and friends who came. Your music is a gift for us. We watched your fingers fly across the strings, we listened to your cotton candy voices, we danced to your souls, and we were happy. Thanks for an experience of immeasurable value. We love you all. Rose, Sam, Zack.

Seldovia Summer Solstice Music Festival is a class act! Great musicians. Warm Seldovia hospitality. The snowy mountains, the clean fresh breeze. A spiritual presence. Meticulous sound crew. The last moment of music when the audience roared out Summertime gave us musicians on the stage a rare thrill. Love hugs and gratitude to all who made this magic event happen. Lindianne Sarno

Dear Susan and Seldovia Arts Council Folks,

This card is meant to represent pure joy- beautiful muisc, friendly and fun people, incredible weather and setting. THANK YOU for all you do to make the Seldovia Solstice Music Festival happen. We love coming–treasured memories.  Love, Dianne and Elliott Barske  

Such a grand time was had by all.

Thank YOU!!

Susan Mumma Director SSMF…and all of us at the SAC

And special thanks to our Sponsors

Auntie’s Whole Foods, Dawn Berg, Chris Berg, Boardwalk Hotel, Bridgekeeper’s Inn, Simone De Biblioteque, Eric Braendel, Sean Braendel, Rick Brooks, Tamara Blodgett, Lorinda Bridge, Phil Bridge, City of Seldovia, Jenny Chissus, Marina Chissus, Virginia Chissus,John Cook, Serena Coons, Crystal Collier, Courtney Collier, Kirby Corwin, Crabpot Grocery, Dan Crary, Darlene Crawford, Andy Criscuolo, John Dettrich, Andrea Dettrich, Kathleen George, Lewis Dickinson, Jackie Dickinson, Mary Anne Driscoll, Mike Driscoll, Cliff Eberhardt, Amy Gilson, Jannette Garrison, Doug Garrison, Grant Aviation, Karin Gustafson, Al Hand, Eileen Hand, Val Henning,  Zane Henning, Kari Hendrich, Pam Henry, Monty Hingley, Laurel Hilts,  Sunni Hilts, Hopkins Brothers Construction, Robin Hopper, Homer News, Homer Tribune, Hurricane Dave, Inn at Harbor’s Edge, Integrity Survey, Inc.  Esther Int-Hout, KBBI Radio, Peggy Keesecker, Tom Keesecker, Angela Kositz, Rebecca Lambourn, Lyn Lemon, Chris Lethin, Judith Lethin, Savannah Lethin, Tim Lethin, Donna Levesque,  Chris Lillo, Linwood Bar and Grill, Marsha Lind, Milo Matthews, Robert D. Maurer,  Margie McCord, Dan Mc Elrath, Veda Mc Elrath, Rosanna Mc Innes, Cindy McKenna, Bob Moser, Harmony Moser, Mary Montgomery, Susan Mumma, Sandy Murray, Lee Pekrul,  Rene Purpura, Tim Quinn, Rant and Raven Morris Dancers, Joanne Teague, Tide Pool Café, Olivia Turner, Serena Turner, June M. Uminski Trust, Vivian Rojas, Lindianne Sarno, Gary Sawdy,  Sea Parrot Inn,  Ruth Sensenig, Seldovia Chamber of Commerce,  Seldovia Gazette, Seldovia Seacatch, Seldovia Rowing Club Inn, Seldovia Village Tribe, Sunrise Sjoberg, Steve Spurgin, Tania Spurkland, Tobben Spurkland, Brian Slover, George Smallwood, Trina Smallwood, Jeff Snedgen, James Lee Stanley,  Martin Stevens, Jerry Stranik, Suzie Stranik,  Susan B. English School, Suzanne Summerville, Sadi Synn, Marcia Uminski, Mike Webber, Mary Ann Wilson , Aliah Wheeler, and Susan Zerwick.

Memorial Day Weekend Musical Memories to be made by Stephanie Bettman and Luke Halpin! (May 28th)


Stephanie Bettman is at the least a triple threat. An accomplished writer, singer, and
fiddler: her lyrics are infused with wit and wisdom, poetry and insight. Vocally she draws

comparison to the soaring soprano of Joan Baez and the plaintive emotion of Emmylou Harris. Meanwhile, her fiddling, which combines elements of bluegrass and jazz, is filled with influences from such masters as Stephane Grappelli, Byron Berline and Johnny Gimble.

A former actress and circus artist, Bettman is at ease in front of an audience and creates intimacy with her crowd no matter the size.Luke Halpin is a renowned multi-instrumentalist. A master of the guitar and the mandolin, impressive on fiddle, banjo, and adept at nearly anything he picks up. Halpin draws inspiration from the likes of Sam Bush, Mark O’Connor and Tony Rice and holds his own in comparison.
A dynamic and sensitive vocalist himself, the harmony blend he and Bettman achieve is chilling and at times simply transcendent. Halpin has a long history in the music biz, having shared the stage with the likes of Merle Haggard, Lone Star and The Steve Miller Band (to name a few). His quirky sense of humor is a perfect foil to Stephanie’s dry witty presence.Together, Bettman & Halpin are fast earning a reputation for  hypnotizing performances filled with irresistible lyrics, transcendent harmonies and roof-raising instrumentals. They have been a featured act at the Walnut Valley Festival in Winfield, KS along with musical heroes Byron Berline, Michael Martin Murphy w/ Pat Flynn, and Tommy
Their music creates a fully acoustic, delightfully eclectic sound far greater than the sum of its parts: taking the listener from up-tempo down home fiddlin’, to soulful sorrowful ballads, to super hooky folk/pop with catchy melodies and lyrics that will stick with you long after the concert is over. Touring nationally together since 2008, Bettman & Halpin have been recognized in various Regional and National competitions, including:

• Grand Prize Winners in the So Cal Live Acoustic Music Competition
• Winners in Southern California’s Topanga Banjo / Fiddle Contest
• Music Connection’s Top 25 New Music Critiques
• Their 2 CDs have received national and international radio play and critical acclaim,
both reaching the top 10 on the National Folk DJ chart.
• They are currently working on a Live CD as well as their 3rd studio release.
    ‘what a great concert it was… such wonderful harmonies… such musicianship..”

Getting Ready for Up Coming Events!


The cogs of the wheel are turning as the Seldovia Arts Council board finishes up its selections for Spring and Summer events:

Just a taste of what is coming up:

Are you a Seldovia Arts Council member??  Celebrate that!!! Come to the special members only event May 18…entertainment by the Dan Mac Trio, snacks and punch at Stranik’s house on the Old Boardwalk.  If you are a member, this event is free of charge.  You can become a member at the event. Join US!  Please RSVP by calling 234-2060

Seldovia Arts Council Summer Schedule

May 28           Stephanie Bettman and Luke Halpin Concert

June 21-24      Seldovia Summer Solstice Music Festival with headliners James Lee Stanley, Cliff Eberhardt, Dan Crary and Thunderation

July 20      Muriel Anderson and Tierra Negra

July 27        A  Celebration for Fritz Graese  with Sue Biggs and Jack Wills
August  11   Air force Band of the Pacific “Top Cover”
August    24      Ocean’s Film Festival

September   1     Acoustic Alaska Guitar Camp  Guitar Masters Concert

                   September 26    Riders in the Sky Concert
October 4             Patrick Ball Legends of  the Celtic Harp Concert

Warming up the Fall and Winter Months


The Seldovia Arts Council’s Fall and Winter Season were a great success.

Saying good-bye to Summer, Sweet Plantain, a Latin Jazz group came from New York City to weave and synthesizethe roots of jazz from many cultures into smooth jazz pieces. This cool evening was offset by a fun ice cream social in a festive atmosphere. Many thanks to Tania and Tobben Spurklin and their crew for setting up this event and the the Alaska State Council on the Arts and Westaf for helping us to fund it.

Our Winter Series kicked off  in December with the ever popular local group Billy Goat who provided the community with  hot licks at the Sea Otter Community Center.  Surrounded by friends and family the community enjoyed a pot luck supper, smiles and Christmas time cheer, finger-licking good!

Later, in February, local Native American Flute artist, Brian Slover,  warmed up the snow-covered landscape with his artistry. Even better he brought a group of his talented young students to swap tunes and create  a musical bantering that was delightful to behold and to hear.

Much thanks goes out to Laurel Hilts for co-ordinating these winter events…

2011 Season


                          The  Seldovia Arts Council will be presenting

                          a full season this summer and on into the Fall.
















Our Summer Season will begin with Hot Club of Nunaka, a dynamite gypsy jazz  group from Anchorage. This group will be returning for a whole show/dance after having debuted in Seldovia at the Seldovia Summer Solstice Music Festival three years ago. Gypsy jazz has been described as follows:

Gypsy jazz (also known as “Gypsy Swing“) is an idiom often said to have been started by guitarist Jean “Django” Reinhardt in the 1930s.[1] Because its origins are largely in France it is often called by the French name, “Jazz manouche,” or alternatively, manouche jazz,” even in English language sources.[2] Django was foremost among a group of Gypsy guitarists working in and around Paris in the 1930s through the 1950s, a group which also included the brothers Baro,Sarane, and Matelo Ferret and Reinhardt’s brother Joseph “Nin-Nin” Reinhardt.[3]

Many of the musicians in this style worked in Paris in various popular Musette ensembles. The Musette style waltz remains an important component in the Gypsy jazz repertoire. Reinhardt was noted for combining a dark, chromatic Gypsy flavor with the swing articulation of the period. This combination is critical to this style of jazz. In addition to this his approach continues to form the basis for contemporary Gypsy jazz guitar. Reinhardt’s most famous group, the Quintette du Hot Club de France, also brought fame to jazz violinist Stéphane Grappelli.

However, it is described Hot Club of Nunaka , articulates gypsy jazz beautifully.  You can enjoy this group cabaret/style at the  Susan B. English School Commons at 8 PM on May 29.


Next up is the famous

                        Seldovia Summer Solstice Music Festival

Now in its 12th year,  the festival is an eclectic mix of music, dance and workshops that will stimulate and sooth and tickle a variety of musical tastes. This year’s headlining acts include:

Moira Smiley and VOCO,  a trio of singers who  push the edge of a cappela music redefining harmony singing with the power and physicality of folksong, the avant-garde fearlessness of Bela Barok and vaudevillian combo of cello, accordion and banjo. Named #1 a cappella group in the U.S. in 2007, Moira Smiley and VOCO crate lush arrangements of sweet spell-binding American and European song and light up the stage with rompin ‘stompin body percussion and warm wit.

Jaime Michaels is an award winning singer songwriter from Santa Fe, New Mexico, who is bound to win your heart as well. Jaime has a long career of writing songs, playing in rock and roll bands, and touring the world with his body of songs.  As Mark S.Tucker remarks in his FAME review of Jaime’s newest album, The Man With The Time Machine, “Michaels watches the side currents of life, not the hurtlingly frantic noise and images…far more the missed opportunities, the mistakes, the wrinkles in the heart. We may be living through the 21st century, but work like his takes us back to a Mayberry that’s a lot scruffier around the edges, an indeterminate era when our fantasies about such things danced a little differently. .””

Other  favorites are Alaskan  greats, Robin Hopper, Dan McElrath, Mt. Echo, The Acoustic Banana; Seldovia’s own Betsy Scott, the Rob Rurka Band and Brian Slover and touring artists from around the  world Paul Thompson from the United Kingdom , Bianca De Leon , Tex Mex song master, from Austen, Texas,  husband and wife, country artists, Don and Karen McNatt from Nashville, fiddlers, Diamonds in the Rough, from Illinois and dance teachers Anne and Rob Nelezen from Wisconsin.

The event will cover four days of free and paid events starting with free events on Thursday June 16 with a jam on the Alaska State Ferry, Tustemena and then  after dinner on to an Open Mic’ which will feature  those performers who are not included on the schedule but who would like to have a set.

The festival is officially opened June 17  with Friday, morning workshops, and Friday evening performances . It continues Saturday morning  with  around town events and then on to workshops on Saturday afternoon and Saturday evening performance.  It ends on Sunday afternoon with a gospel jam.


July 9 will feature a concert by a trio of loving  music by  Alaskan Composer/ Singer-Songwriters Shawn Zuke, Melissa Mitchell and Michelle McCaffee:

                                            Women of One Soul

This group is part of a cooperative of artists, poets and musicians that have a mission to bring music and art to confined places, communities and situations all over .  This concert will start at 8 PM and venue TBA.


August 20 will feature the piano styling of Jason Farnham. Jason Farnham of Los Angeles, CA is truly THE “International Entertainer of Contemporary Piano Music”. From the baby grand at Deepak Chopra’s retreat in San Diego to the Cultural Center for the Arts in Canton, Ohio, Jason’s spectacular show “An Evening of Contemporary Piano” delights audiences around the U.S., again and again. Whether it’s his ability to connect with the audience on a personal level, the way he creates a variety of emotions through his soul-soothing compositions, Jason’s true gift of captivating the audience and taking them along on his picturesque musical journey is unmatched by any other.  The concert starts at 8PM  and venue TBA .


Labor Day weekend, September 3  heralds  the return of the annual Guitar Master’s Concerts featuring the instructors from the Acoustic Alaska Guitar Camp. This year’s featured are,

Chris Proctor, Steve Kauffman, and Naked Blue.

Chris Proctor is held as one of  the world’s most innovative finger-stylists and Steve Kauman is one the world’s finest mandolin flat-pickers. Naked Blue is a harmonious husband and wife duo of sweet singer songwriters. The three will perform sets and interchanges that can be found nowhere else.  We are extremely lucky to have this opportunity to present these fine performers at 8 PM at the Susan B. English School Commons.


Late October, the Seldovia Arts Council will present touring cellists Sweet Plantain. Hailing from New York City the group will grace the stage  October 30 with an original blend of beats from Latin to Classical. Sweet Plantain is a string quartet that specializes in genre-blurring, original compositions and arrangements as well as contemporary works by Latin American composers. Its unique style fuses Latin, classical, jazz, and improvisational forms. They will also present an outreach activity to the students at Susan B. English School.


The cost for most of these events is $15 $35 family

The venue for the events is normally the Susan B. English School Commons

For information on these event s please call

Susan Mumma Executive Director  907-234-7614

Or check out the Seldovia Arts Council website


Seldovia Arts Council 2011 Season in Full Swing!!


The Seldovia Arts Council is planning several wonderful events for the 2011 Season

Seldovia Summer Solstice Music Festival  June 16-19    featuring Jaime Michaels and

moira smiley and VOCO…

Hot  Club of Nunaka May 29  8 PM Susan B. English Commons Coming Memorial Day Weekend

March 24 Carrie Newcomer 7:30  Susan B. English School Commons
May 29     Hot Club of Nunaka

June 16-20 Seldovia Summer Solstice Music Festival
July 9    Women of One Soul  Concert

August 20 Jason Farnham

September 3 The Annual Guitar Master’s Concert with Chris Proctor, Steve Kaufmanand Naked Blue