RSCDS Twin Cities Branch Steampunk Ball
9 April 2011
featuring live music by
Barbara McOwen (fiddle) and Sherry Ladig (piano)
Schedule | Registration | Accommodations | Contact | Program

Our 35th annual grand ball will have a steampunk theme (think Victorian + techno-punk). Dressing according to the theme is purely optional, of course. The main point will be to enjoy an evening of fabulous dancing with live music and tasty treats. We are also excited to be offering a music workshop taught by Barbara McOwen on Sunday.

We are delighted to be featuring internationally acclaimed fiddler Barbara McOwen. Barbara began playing fiddle for Scottish dancing in 1971, the same year she gained her B.A. in Music from the University of California, Berkeley. She subsequently drew upon source books and recordings, and her knowledge of Scottish country and highland dancing, when forming her first band, the Berkeley Scottish Players. Since then she studied fiddling and collected material in Scotland over the course of a dozen trips there, and has taught a number of music workshops in the U.S., Canada, Japan, Australia and New Zealand. She currently leads Tullochgorum, a Scottish country dance band based in Boston, is co-founder of the Boston Scottish Fiddle Club and the N.H. Strathspey & Reel Society, and founded and directs the Boston Harbor Scottish Fiddle School. She also has a number of recordings and prize-winning compositions to her credit. Barbara has a full-time schedule of private Scottish fiddle students of all ages, has developed a course for teaching beginning through advanced Scottish fiddle, and recently wrote a book on the fiddle music of Highland fiddler Aonghas Grant, published by Mel Bay in 2010. In her off-hours, Barbara enjoys looking at her garden, designing databases, and reading about ancient history and Minoan archaeology.

Barbara will be accompanied by pianist Sherry Ladig. A frequent performer of many styles of folk music including Traditional Irish (Dunquin), Scottish dance and concert performance (Night Scotsman), and mid-to-late 19th century American (The New Pearl Button Players), Sherry performs Celtic and 19th-century historic music regularly in the Twin Cities. She will be familiar to most local Scottish dancers as the bandleader of Thistledown and a frequent musician for other Branch socials and performances. Also an active composer, Sherry is the composer-in-residence for the Minnesota Mandolin Orchestra and composes a wide range of works for all types of instrumental and choral ensembles.

Schedule of Events:

Saturday, 9 April
Ball Practice 1:30pm to 3:30pm at The Celtic Junction, 836 Prior Ave S, St. Paul. Parking is on the north side of the building.
Contact Dan Grundtner (danger [at] for more information.
Dinner (optional, on your own) We will be serving hors d'oeuvres at the ball, but if you are interested in going out for a fuller meal before the dance, here is a guide and map to some nearby dining spots
Grand Ball
with music by Barbara McOwen and Sherry Ladig
The Celtic Junction, 836 Prior Ave S, St. Paul. Parking is on the north side of the building.
6:00 pm -- Socializing and Hors D'oeuvres
7:30 pm -- Grand March and Dancing [program]

Tiffany McCracken has volunteered to take portraits of you in your finery

There will be a silent auction as a fundraiser to subsidize the cost of the ball weekend. If you have items to donate, please contact Maggie Voth (maggie.voth [at]

After-Glow Party Carol Mordorski will host an after-glow party immediately following the ball at her home in Roseville. Please bring food or drink share. Directions available at the ball
Sunday, 10 April

Please join us for a potluck brunch at the home of Amy and Dean Muldoon in south Minneapolis, starting at 10:30am. Directions available at the ball or from Amy at amy.muldoon [at]

Music Workshop

12:30pm-3pm in Kensington Square (chapel basement) at Becketwood, 4300 W. River Parkway, Minneapolis
Don't miss this special opportunity to participate in a Scottish dance music workshop by Barbara McOwen. Barbara has been teaching since 1980 at workshops across the United States and Canada, as well in Japan and Australia.

This will be a group workshop for all instruments and all-levels above raw beginner. The focus will be on learning how to play in the Scottish style. Music will be provided ahead of time so that less time can be spent learning the tunes. Cost is just $10 per person.


Dancing and refreshments (through April 4): $35.00
Dancing and refreshments (after April 4): $40.00
Dancing and refreshments (students): $28.00
Refreshments only (non-dancer): $25.00
Music Workshop: $10.00 Refreshments include substantial hors d'oeuvres, non-alcoholic beverages, and dessert
Interested in going out for a fuller meal before the dance? Here is a guide and map to some nearby dining spots

»Please print, fill in and submit the registration form.

Ball registrar: Tom Harries, e-mail: registrar [at]


Hospitality is available for out of town guests in the homes of local dancers. Please indicate your needs on the registration form. Contact Dan Grundtner with questions, e-mail: danger [at]


General: Scott Marsalis, Ball Co-Chair, e-mail: smarsalis [at]

Registration/Tickets: Tom Harries, email: registrar [at]
Hospitality: Dan Grundtner, email: danger [at]
Silent Auction: Maggie Voth, email: maggie.voth [at]

Grand Ball Program:

Download ball dance instructions (PDF)
[Error in "Braes of Tulliemet" corrected 8 March 2011]
[Errors in "Punch Bowl" corrected 28 March 2011]
[Error in "Anna's Wedding Cake" corrected 4 April 2011]

The Dillsburg Jig 32 J 3C Tang (Leaflet)
The Rakes of Glasgow 32 S 3C RSCDS 11
Petronella 32 R 2C RSCDS 1
Strip the Willow (Orcadian style)  J (9/8) Traditional Ceilidh
Foursome Reel 64 S+64 R 2C RSCDS 3
The Whiteadder Jig 32 J 3C Johnstone/Whiteadder Coll'n
The Australian Ladies 32 R 3C Glasgow Assembly
I'll Mak' Ye Fain to Follow Me 32 J 3C RSCDS 6
Bedrule 32 S 3C RSCDS 33
General Stuart's Reel 32 R 3C RSCDS 10
The Hollin Buss 32 J 2C RSCDS 24
The Bonny Water 48 S 4C Rintoul/Alba Smiles
Pugwash and Tatamagouche 32 H 3C Wallace (Leaflet)
The Cranberry Tart 32 J 3C Glasspool/7 Year Itch
Anna's Wedding Cake 32 S 3CS Boston Celebrate 50
The Punch Bowl 32 R 3C RSCDS 5
The Nurseryman 32 J 3C RSCDS 37
The Braes of Tulliemet 32 S 3C RSCDS 7
Da Rain Dancin' 32 R 3C Wallace/Whiteadder

Download ball dance instructions (PDF)
[Error in "Braes of Tulliemet" corrected 8 March 2011]
[Errors in "Punch Bowl" corrected 28 March 2011]
[Error in "Anna's Wedding Cake" corrected 4 April 2011]

Previous Balls: 1999 | 2000 | 2001 | 2002 | 2003 | 2004 | 2005 | 2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010
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Last updated 4 April 2011 | webmaster [at]