Press Releases


June 1, 2017
Eva Maria Kish, Ethnic Dance Theatre
651.341.5312 |


Land of Legends
A Journey Through the Carpathian Mountains

 MINNEAPOLIS, MN. (June 23-24-25, 2017) Land of Legends: A Journey Through the Carpathian Mountains is the subject of Ethnic Dance Theatre’s (EDT) Spring Concert Series returning to the EM Pearson Theatre at Concordia University in St. Paul.

Spring Concert Series: Land of Legends: A Journey Through the Carpathian Mountains
Friday, June 23, 2017, 7:30 pm (Q & A to follow performance)
Saturday, June 24, 2017, 7:30 pm (Master Class at 6 pm)
Sunday, June 25, 2017, 2:00 pm (Audience Participation)
Concordia University, EM Pearson Theatre, 312 Hamline Avenue, St. Paul, MN 55104
$25 Adults
$22 Seniors/Students
$10 Under 12

Tickets available at

EDT takes audiences to lands shrouded in mountain mists and fog, visiting cultures from remote regions that remain largely untouched by modern trends. Cultures presented on stage will include the Carpatho-Rusyn people of eastern Slovakia and western Ukraine, a Jewish couple from northeastern Hungary, and the Saxons of Transylvania. The picture would not be complete without a visit to the Ukrainians of Bukovina, the Hungarians of central Transylvania, the Romanians of Oas, the Polish highlanders of Podhale, and the Vlach people living along the Homolje range of the Carpathians in eastern Serbia. Visual imagery and narrative context will preface each work.

The Ethnic Dance Theatre Orchestra will provide live music and will be featured in select performances throughout the concert. Colleen Bertsch, a Ph.D. student in Ethnomusicology at the University of Minnesota, directs this season’s ensemble of musicians. Colleen recently returned from a nine month research trip to Romania where she studied the string-based bands of Transylvania and their performance idioms. Joining the musicians will be acclaimed vocalist and guest artist Natalie Nowytski.

“Music and dance are true artistic expressions of a culture’s identity,” says artistic director Donald LaCourse. “Land of Legends will highlight these traditions from a region that is familiar, but less well known to many people.”

In addition to the two-act concert, a number of supplementary events will be offered throughout the weekend. Friday offers a Q & A with artistic director Donald LaCourse and members of the cast. On Saturday, a master class will be offered at no cost to ticket holders for any of the weekend’s performances. This class will take place in the dance studio adjacent to the EM Pearson Theatre lobby at 6 pm on Saturday. On Sunday, audiences will be invited to join the cast on stage to dance to the EDT Orchestra. Land of Legends is funded in part by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund. Additional funding is provided by the Hungary Initiatives Foundation, Target Foundation, Uponor Corporation, and individual donors.

For more information, visit

About Ethnic Dance Theatre: Ethnic Dance Theatre (EDT) is an award-winning company dedicated to the artistic performance and preservation of world music, song, and dance. Founded in 1974, EDT has been a gem of the artistic community in the Twin Cities, not only presenting theater performances, but also conducting school workshops and residencies, creating lecture-demonstrations on various topics related to folklore, sponsoring traditional festivals and, for the past 20 years, hosting an annual community dance party.

About the EDT Orchestra: The Ethnic Dance Theatre Orchestra is comprised of some of the premier folk music specialists in the Twin Cities and Upper Midwest. Through their command of regional performance idioms and esoteric instrumentation, the ensemble fulfills the diverse stylistic needs of each work, while showcasing their own musicianship and virtuosity. Colleen Bertsch directs an 11 member ensemble, performing on approximately 15 different instruments.

About Natalie Nowytski: A classically trained vocalist and award-winning composer and performer, Natalie has dedicated herself to the study and performance of traditional folk music since 1996. She has traveled to Bulgaria, Czech Republic, France, and Ukraine to study culture and folk music. Natalie sings in more than 40 languages—including her native Ukrainian—and in nearly 20 distinct vocal styles. She frequently conducts vocal workshops, coaches performing ensembles, guest lectures for college-level music schools, and teaches private voice students. Natalie’s performance credits include appearances with Peter Ostroushko, Ruth MacKenzie, Joe Chvala and the Flying Foot Forum, and Ethnic Dance Theatre. Natalie is also a current member of The Rose Ensemble, one of America’s premiere early music ensembles. Her website is

MEDIA: Photographs are available at