Laura Cortese and the Dance Cards

Laura CorteseWelding the propulsive grace of fiddle styles to disarmingly open-hearted original pop songs, Laura Cortese has emerged among the most intriguing and versatile, musicians in the bountiful New England post-folk scene. At home in any number of traditional styles, her highly-visible work as a supporting musician (on fiddle, vocals, and bass) includes appearances with Jocie Adams (Low Anthem), Uncle Earl, Tao Seeger, Band of Horses, and – as part of Pete Seeger’s 90th birthday celebration at Madison Square Garden – Patterson Hood and Michael Franti. The past two years have found Cortese in creative overdrive, balancing sideman duties, solo tours, and recording sessions with an increased devotion to her own music: a kaleidoscopic hybrid that is enriched by roots music undertones and yet remains defiantly contemporary. In 2010 Cortese released an EP trilogy including her all female Acoustic Project. Tireless and always looking to the future, Laura Cortese is gearing up to put the finishing touches on a second Acoustic Project record, what she feels is her most vivid statement yet.

Friday, November 1st, 10:15pm-11:30pm
Heartland Gallery
Wristband or cover

Mean Lids festival preview!

Can’t wait for the festival to be here? Join us for a festival preview on October 24th at Krannert Uncorked with the Mean Lids!

Mean Lids

“Self-described as “one part smooth Irish session, one part spicy cajun-zydeco, one part hot western swing, with two parts driving southern old-time,” this trio captures the dancehall energy of the living folk tradition. The funky spirits of violinist Ben Smith, Miriam Larson on flute, and guitarists Matt Turino will set a festive tone for the Champaign-Urbana Folk and Roots Festival on November 1 and 2.”

Only as mean as they need to be to keep the grit in their tones and the edge on their tunes, the Mean Lids are never seen without their signature cranial apparel. Spot them by their hats, their long lonesome sounds, and the @$$ kicking baritone grooves emanating from their mean, mean fiddle fingers.

Thursday, October 24th, 5:00pm-7:00pm
Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, Stage 5

Dance Try-Its

Yes, you CAN have it all! Spend a delightful hour-and-a-half learning three different dance traditions.

Irish dancing


Irish (with Daniel Flora)

English and Scandinavian (with Jon and Sue Hanson)

International Folk Dance (with the Illini Folk Dance Society)




Saturday, November 2nd, 2:15pm-3:45pm
Landmark Hotel Ballroom

Kate Fritz

Kate FritzKate Fritz grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area playing Scottish fiddle music with the San Francisco Scottish Fiddlers under music director Alasdair Fraser.  Her music draws primarily from Scottish, Irish and Cape Breton inspirations.  In the past year she travelled with her fiddle and music recorder in Appalachia, Canada, the UK, Russia, China, and South East Asia exploring the connection between environmental health and regional music.


Friday, November 1st, 7:00pm-7:45pm
Heartland Gallery
Wristband or cover

Mugdock Pipers

Mugdock PipersThe Mugdock Pipers were founded in the 1960s by Mr. Jim Lynch, Urbana, to promote the art of the Highland Bagpipe in the Champaign-Urbana area. Members have been drawn from among UIUC students as well as from the wider community. Current members are from Champaign, Urbana, Villa Grove, and Oakland.The Mugdock Pipers are named after Mugdock Castle in Scotland.

Catch them for the “Piper’s welcome” at the Independent Media Center on Friday just before 6:00pm. Then follow them over to the the Iron Post patio where they’ll play another short set by the fire pit!