Amy Fradon, Ubaka Hill and Peggy Atwood will headline two nights of great entertainment at BSP. Fradon, who appears on Friday with guitarist extraordinaire Jim Barbaro, also teaches, counsels, performs weddings and promotes personal transformation through Vocal Visionary Work. She has recorded CDs and performed with Leslie Ritter, Mikhail Horowitz, the Vanaver Caravan, Face the Music and many others. Ubaka Hill is a nationally known recording artist, percussionist, poet, songwriter and drum teacher who has presented her workshops and concerts locally at the Omega Institute, Kripalu, Mirabai Books in Woodstock and at the Clearwater Hudson River Revival festival. Her soul-vision and intention are to facilitate and inspire personal transformation, empowerment, healing and joy with music that moves you. Naturalist and eco-activist Peggy Atwood has graced the stage as opening act for John Hall, Eric Andersen, Livingston Taylor, Tom Paxton, Odetta, Pete Seeger, John Stewart, Ronee Blakley and many other folk legends.
On Friday, March 11 the Festival begins with Fre Atlast and Birds of a Feather drum group, followed by an amazing list of performers including belly dancer Elizabeth Muise with Shane Chikeles; belly dance artist and instructor Willow (a/k/a Christine Dempsey) accompanied by music producer Rick Birmingham and friends; Amy Fradon; lyricist and musician Michelle Christine Garza; One Sky, featuring songwriter Mighty Xee on keyboards and T. G. Vanini on violin; the Bard Belly Dance Collective; followed by Hemingway’s Cat, led by composer/guitarist Lorah Yaccarino, with Denise Parent singing and drumming, Mark Nahnsen on alto sax and Dan Archy on guitar.
On Saturday, March 12 the Twisted Tassels Gypsies Belly Dance Troupe will be led by creative director Charlene “Perizad” Roberts, followed by Doug with Wet Paint conga drumming; the Wild Roses, a belly dance troupe connected to Hudson Valley Academy of Performing Arts in West Taghkanic led by Amanda Barrett and Amanda Karch, artistic director, and accompanied by drummer Steve Collins; Mamalama, featuring Elizabeth Clark-Jerez, Charlie Schikowitz, Henry Lowengard, Sharon Penz and Kikipapa (a/k/a Kaefan Shaw); the Barushka Belly Dance Troupe; Ubaka Hill and the Drumsong Orchestra; the Gnomeman Shadow Theater; a fashion show by African roots fashion designer Eunika Simmons; Gogo Nana; Audie Belly Dance; and Peggy Atwood with Julia Nichols, Marji Zintz, John Guth, Michael Colletti and Steve Collins.
During the show on Saturday, Deejay Hrana will be spinning world dance music. And don’t miss the Woodstock Goddess Art Exhibition that will be on display at BSP the entire month of March. Tickets can be purchased at the BSP door for $12. The show begins at 7 p.m. and runs until at least midnight each night. Backstage Studio is located at 323 Wall Street in Kingston.
Meanwhile, in Saugerties, Café Mezzaluna will present performances by co-host Chrissy Budzinski, Abby Lappen, Pam West, Deb Martin and Dave Kearney on Friday evening; and Lizz Dieleman, Sybil Allyson & Roots of Change, co-host Marji Zintz, Split the Bill, Jaclyn Falk, Frances Kramer and El Rancho Deluxo on Saturday evening. Festivities at Mezzaluna start Friday at 5 until 10 p.m., and on Saturday run from 3 to 10 p.m. Tickets are $10 at the door. Mezzaluna is located at 626 Route 212 in Saugerties.
Phillip Levine, president of the Woodstock Poetry Society, will host the Woodstock Goddess Poetry Slam at the Colony Café in Woodstock on Sunday, March 13. More of an open-mic affair, poets can sign in and do their thing without fear of judgment and reprisal. This is, after all, a non-violent event; no real slamming will occur. So far, the lineup includes Shoshanna, Charlene Roberts, John Fitzpatrick and Baron James Ashanti. Be brave: Come share your poetic musings. The Goddess Poetry Slam runs from 7 to 10 p.m. at the Colony Café on Rock City Road in Woodstock. Poetry Slam tickets are $10.
It isn’t easy to talk about “Goddess power of the Feminine” and battered women in the same sentence, unless the conversation addresses the potential for women to take back their power and support each other to do the same. To that end, men and women will dance, sing and play at three venues for three days in recognition of the Goddess in all us. Desjardins and his associates have pledged that at least 80 percent of all funds raised will assist Family of Woodstock’s shelter. Let the party begin!