Roo Lester & Larry Harding
Turning Dances of Norway and Sweden
Dances taught this year: Eggans Bugg, Finnskogspols, Hyfs, Karusellvalsen, Slängpolska för tre
Roo Lester teaches many different kinds of Scandinavian dance, but has focused especially on what she calls the turning dances of Norway and Sweden. Whenever possible she teaches with her husband, Larry Harding.
This now-seasoned instructor first began folk dancing during a rainy-day gradeschool PE activity. She went on to a Masters Degree in Dance with a focus in Dance Ethnology from UCLA, after that fateful day at a college folk dance class in which she first saw the Hambo. Soon after, Roo began teaching Scandinavian dance after her first visit to the San Diego State University Folk Dance Conference, where she met Boulder, CO., -based Scandinavian dance teacher Ingvar Sodal. (If that name rings a bell, it's because Ingvar and his wife, Sally, were with us at August Camp 2001!)
Roo has traveled extensively in Scandinavia since 1983, studying dance and testing her skills as a participant in numerous courses and competitions. She served as the American coordinator for several dance and music camps in Scandinavia.
Roo's work has included teaching folk dance in the public schools, choreographing and dancing in performing groups, and directing folk dance camps. She also has written and published a number of lengthy descriptions of Norwegian dances including Telespringar, Hallingspringar, and Valdresspringar; a guide to Scandinavian dance basics; and several other articles.
As dance instructors, Roo and Larry’s hallmarks include clear, positive teaching that incorporates background information, styling, and technique, and their enthusiasm for sharing their love of Scandinavian dance with everyone is evident. The couple's talent for presenting the basic concepts of Scandinavian dance in a fun and lighthearted manner has earned them praise and appreciation from campers from Mainewoods and Stockton to Pinewoods and numerous other folk dance destinations.
Description: "Pols dance from Finnskogen in great reconstructed folk clothing. Bjørn Sverre Hol Haugen and Veslernøy Nordset won the senior regular fiddle in 2009. The tune is a pols after Marinus Amudsen from Sørskogbygde."