Northern California Spelmanslag Annual Report for the Fiscal Year 1998/1999

The Northern California Spelmanslag

        The Northern California Spelmanslag is a non-profit public benefit corporation which aims to promote Scandinavian music, dance and culture through special workshops, regular meetings, concerts and performances. The organization consists of a central organization and four member groups: the Mid-Peninsula Scandinavian Dance Group, Nordahl Grieg Leikarring (and Nordahl Grieg Spelemannslag), Nordic Footnotes, and Scandiadans Scandinavian dance class.  The Spelmanslag also contains many individual members who are active in dancing or in playing Scandinavian music, loosely organized in groups by locality.
        The  Spelmanslag publishes the Northern California Spelmanslag News quarterly.  The first volume was issued in September of 1990 and this issue completes our tenth volume.  The newsletter keeps musicians, dancers, and members of the Scandinavian community informed regarding our activities.  The newsletter includes a calendar of Scandinavian folk music and dance activities as well as related cultural events in northern California and elsewhere, news about the Spelmanslag organization, and articles of general interest.
        The Northern California Spelmanslag maintains an internet web page at  Besides basic information about the spelmanslag organization, this page includes a regularly updated calendar of Scandinavian events in northern California, the US, and, to some extent, in Scandinavia.  It also includes an online version of the Northern California Spelmanslag Newsletter, links to other web sites, a list of members of the board, their phone numbers and email addresses, and tips for planning events and submitting event ideas to the board for approval.
        The Spelmanslag has worked with other Scandinavian organizations in promoting Scandinavian culture.  We have maintained contacts with numerous Scandinavian organizations and agencies, promoting communication and informing them of our activities.  We have also sought to promote communication and cooperation between various groups across the country which promote Scandinavian culture.  We mail copies of our newsletter to individuals and groups across
the United States who are involved in organizing events which promote Scandinavian folk music and dance. The newsletter keeps them informed regarding Scandinavian folk dance and music activities in Northern California, and provides an outlet for them to inform others of their local special events.  We have cooperated with several groups around the country in organizing tours of Scandinavian guest instructors.
        In future years, we intend to continue striving towards our goals of promoting Scandinavian folk culture and cultural exchange.  We will remain active in bringing instructors from Scandinavia to teach folk dance and music, and will continue to hold regular meetings for musicians and dancers.  We hope to further develop the sense of community among local musicians and dancers, and will continue to work together with the larger Scandinavian community both locally and across the country.

The Board and Board Meetings

        The Northern California Spelmanslag has a board of 14 directors.  Current members are:

        Jeanne Sawyer, President,   (408) 929-5602
        Betsy McKone, Vice-President,   (415) 368-8006
        Jim Little, Treasurer,   (650) 323-2256
        Frank Tripi, Secretary,   (510) 654-3636
        Fred Bialy,   (510) 215-5974
        Sarah Kirton,   (650) 968-3126
        Egil Larsen,   (650) 967-2310
        Susan Overhauser,   (510) 222-2023
        Linda Persson,   (650) 323-2256
        Stewart Pugh,   (510) 527-7272
        Henry Sawyer,   (408) 929-5602
        Mikkel Thompson,   (408) 998-2076
        Virginia Thompson,   (510) 527-7272
        Jane Tripi,   (510) 654-3636

        If you would like to offer input regarding Spelmanslag activities or would like to become actively involved, please contact one of the directors with your ideas and suggestions.  You are welcome to attend board meetings.  If you are interested in being a board member, please let one of our current directors know.  Normally, elections for the board take place on the first Saturday of October.  Call Jeanne Sawyer for the time and place of board meetings.

Organizational Affiliations

Folk Dance Federation of California.
        The Northern California Spelmanslag is a club under the Folk Dance Federation of California.  The Spelmanslag obtains its liability insurance through the Folk Dance Federation.
Hardanger Fiddle Association of America.
        The Northern California Spelmanslag is a group member of the HFAA, which promotes the traditional music and dance associated with the Norwegian hardingfele.
        The Northern California Spelmanslag cooperates with other Scandinavian organizations such as the Swedish and Norwegian consulates, The Norway Day Festival, the local Sons of Norway and VASA lodges, and the American Scandinavian Foundation.

The Year in Review: 1998-1999

        During the 1998/989 fiscal year, NCS has held regular meetings for musicians in two Northern California locations where Scandinavian folk music has been taught and shared.  The Spelmanslag also sponsors regular Scandinavian dance classes via the MidPeninsula Dancers, Scandiadans, and the Nordahl Grieg Leikarring, and has provided these and other groups with non-profit status and insurance coverage.  Through these regular activities, we have been successful in introducing newcomers to Scandinavian music and dance.
        This year was marked by the resignation of Patrick Golden, who is one of our founding members, and who has been treasurer since our inception.
        During the year, Nordic Footnotes and the NCS arranged two mini-workshops for Bay area musicians.  These workshops were taught by local fiddlers, and were intended to keep musicians abreast of the "latest fun tunes."   We hope to continue this.
        The Nordahl Grieg Leikarring and Spelemannslag hosted two weekend workshops at the Sons of Norway Camp near Alta, California.  The November event featured Norwegian contra- and set dances and reels of the 19th century, taught by the husband and wife team of Johan Einar & Torunn Hernes Bjerke of Oslo.  Beginning dance was taught by Mikkel Thompson.  Instruction on fiddle and hardingfele was provided by Bill Boyd of Seattle, and Bill Likens taught
techniques of ensemble playing.  The second weekend in April featured Mikkel Thompson who taught dances of Setesdal and Agder, in southeast Norway.  Loretta Kelley supplied dance music, and Bill Boyd, fiddle, and Bill Likens, accordion taught music workshops.
        We have also provided performances of Scandinavian folk music and dance for other Scandinavian organizations and for the general public (see the table of activities and performances included in this report).  The Nordahl Grieg Leikarring continues to be a busy performing group with over 20 appearances.

 Financial Policies

        All activities of the Northern California Spelmanslag are organized and provided by volunteer services.  Board members receive no compensation for their services.  Volunteers do not typically receive free admission to events.
        The Spelmanslag does pay guest instructors to cover their expenses; typically we are able to cover airfare and a stipend which should cover their ground travel and per diem expenses while in the San Francisco Bay Area.
        Admission costs to special event workshops are based at cost divided by expected attendance.  Admission to concerts and dances is based at or slightly above cost.  Any profit above expenses is deposited in Spelmanslag accounts for use in future special events.  There is no admission charge for regular musicians’ gatherings.
        Financial policies may  vary somewhat for member groups.

Financial Goals

        Our financial goal as an organization is to develop a reserve fund equivalent to the total budget for a special event festival (typically $8,000 to $12,000), plus the annual budget for the newsletter (approximately $2,500).  This brings our goal to about $15,000 for the central NCS account.  Having this amount in our account would allow us more leverage in organizing special festivals, and would allow us to take risks such as sponsoring a festival of music and dance from less-known regions of Scandinavia.  Our financial reserve allows us to pay for up-front expenses (airfare, hall deposits, publicity) as they occur.
        The central NCS account has continued to obtain contributions from members and individuals who wish to promote Scandinavian folk music and dance.  However, these contributions do not yet cover the annual cost of producing the NCS news.  We hope in future years to increase contributions in order to fully support the newsletter and to increase our reserve fund.  §

Financial Report

        The Northern California Spelmanslag operates on a fiscal year which runs from October 1 through September 30.
        The treasurer, Jim Little, has prepared the financial statement for the Northern California Spelmanslag.  This report is a consolidated report reflecting the activities of the central NCS organization, Nordic Footnotes, Mid-Peninsula Dancers, Scandiadans, and the Nordahl Grieg Leikarring and Spelemannslag.  Please note that only the income and expenses which fall in the fiscal year of 10/1/97 - 9/30/98 are reported, with the following exception. Expenses for the 1997 - 98 NCS Newsletter were not submitted in time to be included in last year's report, and thus appear here.  This results in a printing and postage expense total which is larger than it actually was for the '98-'99 year.

Income Statement

October 1, 1998 - September 30, 1999

Income                                                                                         (totals)
NCS Events
                Cassettes                                      $   11.00
                Insurance Reimbursement          $  150.00
                Miscellaneous                             $    86.50              $247.50

Nordahl Grieg Leikarring & Spelemannslag
                Dues                                           $   605.00
                Logo & Merchandise Sales        $   203.13
                Rent Reimbursal for Dances      $   459.00
                Music Book Sales                      $    15.00
                Performances                            $1,910.00
                Tapes & CD Sales                      $    67.20
                Miscellaneous                            $    20.00           $ 3,279.33

Mid-Peninsula Scandinavian Dancers
                Bi-Weekly Dances                    $   522.00           $    522.00

Nordic Footnotes
                Monthly Dances                       $2,461.00            $ 2,461.00

                Weekly Dances                        $3,277.00             $3,277.00

Total Income from Activities:                                               $8,100.08

Income from Contributions and Grants
                NCS                                        $2,043.00
                NGL                                        $   170.00            $2,213.00

Interest Income
                NCS                                        $   680.59
                Mid-Peninsula                         $       0.28
                Scandiadans                           $      10.03             $   690.90

Total Income                                                                      $11,003.98

NCS Events
                Printing and Postage              $ 3,290.36
                Insurance                               $     465.80
                Miscellaneous                        $     117.38          $ 3,873.54

        Nordahl Grieg Leikarring
                Rent                                       $  2,000.00
                Travel, Advances,
                        Reimbursements             $    570.00
                Equipment & Supplies           $ 1,342.01
                Printing & Postage                  $   466.18
                Insurance                                 $   150.00
                Costumes                                $   175.72
                Miscellaneous                         $   390.04          $ 5,693.95

        Mid-Peninsula Scandinavian Dancers
                Rent                                        $   600.00           $   600.00

        Nordic Footnotes
                Rent                                       $   925.00
                Guest Musician                      $   200.00
                Supplies                                  $    53.37         $ 1,178.37

                Rent                                      $ 2,000.00
                Records                                     $189.71
                Federation Dues                          $25.00
                Subscriptions                           $   27.50
                Refreshments                            $205.99
                Printing & Postage                     $36.28
                Equipment                             $2,569.51

Total Expenses                                                              $13,915.37

Net Income                                                                 - $  2,911.39

Beginning Balance                                                      $ 29,082.18
Beginning Balance + Net Income                               $ 26,170.79

Ending Balance
                NCS Main Account                 $15,739.80
                Nordahl Grieg Leikarring        $ 4,991.95
                Mid-Peninsula Dancers            $ 1,445.79
                Nordic Footnotes                     $ 2,775.61
                Scandiadans                        $     1,217.64
Total Ending Balance                                                  $26,170.79


   Sponsors ($100 and up)

        Fred Bialy
        Liberty Elyash
        Carolyn Hunt
        Ralph Morewitz
        Mark Wegner

    Patrons ($25 to $99)

        Brooke Babcock
        Loraine Burger
        Jennifer Dunmire
        Eric & Martha Van Dyke
        Thomas Fischer
        Ed &  Carol Goller
        Gregg & Ruth Gorrin
        Keith Grant
        Linda Guerrero
        Robert & Shirley Hansen
        Carol Harrison
        John Hennings
        Nordahl Grieg Leikarring
        James Little
        Crystal Lokken
        Bev Mann
        Anja Miller
        Hazel Olsen
        Robert & Carol Olson
        Don Meyers & Kathi Ploeger
        Jeanne & Henry Sawyer
        Tom Smithberger
        Donna Tripp

    Supporters ($10 to $24)

        Grace & Arthur Andrews
        Karin Arneson
        Dan Chandler
        Wanda Collins
        Carol Feige
        Ned & Marian Galt
        Sharlien Harrington
        Joann Koppany
        Berit Leonard
        Roo Lester
        Ellen Moilanen
        Jill Rowland
        Diane Schoenfeld
        Matthew Kohn & Heather Steele
        Valerie Stewart
        Brian Sutin