Stonecircle

Stonecircle

BandFolkCeltic

Stonecircle is a vibrant five-piece, Celtic fusion band. The goal of the band has always been to create a musical experience that is exhilarating, ethereal, and beautifully uplifting. Stonecircle music is a language of haunting melodies and energetic, driving tunes.

Biography

Stonecircle has been performing acoustic Celtic fusion music in the United States since 1993. In addition to performing its own arrangements of traditional tunes from England, Scotland, Ireland, and Brittany, Stonecircle also writes original instrumental and vocal tunes in the Celtic style and performs them with passionate energy and clarity of sound.

Together these five musicians have created a driving, unique sound that fuses jazz, classical, and original material to traditional Celtic-based music. Stonecircle has four CDs to date: Serendipity (1997), Alchemy (2001), In Concert (2003), a new winter solstice album, Winter Sky (2005), and a retrospective CD, Asterisk & Dragonflies (2007).

BAND BIOS
Krista Baker is a native of Salt Lake City, Utah but has traveled extensively throughout her life. She began studying piano privately at age seven and violin at age nine. Krista attended the University of Utah where she was heavily involved in music and played in the Honors String Quartet. She holds a B.S. in Accounting and a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Utah. Krista has had several wonderful performance opportunities to play violin with Ballet West, Promised Valley Playhouse Orchestra, City Rep Orchestra, and string quartet performances throughout the state of Utah.

Nina Cooley was born in Ft. Worth, Texas and is the fourth of six children. She describes herself as a military brat who has lived in several states and abroad. Nina attended Southwest Texas State University, the University of Texas at Austin, and graduated from The Evergreen State College, where she received her degree in Music and minored in Music Theater. She currently teaches Kindergarten and private piano, flute, and voice lessons. Nina speaks fluent Greek, Spanish, and Japanese. Nina has been involved in several musical performances including Hello Dolly, Barnum, The Devil and Daniel Webster, My Turn on Earth, and West Side Story. In addition to her musical talent, Nina is an experienced choreographer in ballet, tap, and jazz.

Tiffany Draper is a native Utahan. She began taking piano lessons from her grandmother at age eight and played various band instruments throughout elementary and junior high school. Tiffany took an interest in Irish traditional music at age 14 and listened for eight years before deciding she wanted to play. In 2005 she started taking bodhrán lessons from former Stonecircle member, Brian Dobson, after having seen Stonecircle perform on an early morning television show on the FOX network. Six months later she began whistle lessons with Brian and has loved playing with him at every opportunity. In February of 2007 Tiffany found her instrument of choice, the Irish flute. Tiffany has had the opportunity to be a guest musician with quite a few local Celtic bands, including Shanahy, Yankee Clipper, Kindred Voices and Celtic Harpistry. In addition to being a member of Stonecircle, Tiffany is also member of the Irish traditional band, Rusted Reel, and plays regularly at local Irish music sessions.

Mary Johnston-Coursey has been singing since she could speak. As a child, she studied piano and voice. In the early 1980s, she began collecting Irish music; she traveled to Ireland and performed there as part of the local folk circuit. While she never stopped acquiring Celtic songs and singing partners, she went on to become a professional dancer and choreographer. Her performing experience has continued to broaden over the years; in addition to working with musicians and dancers, she has collaborated with poets, storytellers, visual artists, and performance artists. She enjoys bringing her music and dance background to other art forms. She currently sings through the Heart and Soul organization, works and performs with children, and continues to create dance and multi-media works for the theatre. She especially enjoys singing with Stonecircle, as it returns her full circle to Celtic music, her earliest passion.

George Schoemaker was born in Montreal, Quebec, into a very musical family. His roots include Irish, Scottish, British, Peruvian, German, and Dutch. As a result of this diverse background, George considers himself a citizen of the world and a product of his experience. His grandfather, George Honer, was born in Belfast, but emmigrated to Canada when he was a young man. George remembers his grandfather as a wonderful singer of traditional ballads and this influence has stayed with him. George began playing the ukelele at age four, and began teaching himself guitar when he was six. He has played the guitar off and on ever since that time, punctuated by lessons in classical and rock guitar during his teen years. George speaks fluent French, and has lived in France doing research and field work. While living in France, he first became interested in the traditional folk music and dance of Brittany (where the people speak Breton, a Celtic language).

George is a big fan of pro

Lyrics

The Homecoming

Written By: George Schoemaker

The Homecoming

The wind blows, teasing a crisp autumn morn,
Like the Mistral kissing the shores of the sea,
On the cliffs far above, stands a maiden forlorn,
And she waits for her lover’s return.

Dew wets the grasses; the long night is gone,
And the mist lifts skyward to soften the chill,
Bright Phoebus peaks over mountains at dawn,
As she waits for her lover’s return.

The maiden harbors a hope and a prayer,
That the Ocean Goddess will answer her pleas,
Small figures on the horizon appear,
As she waits for her lover’s return.

She leans forth slightly and shields out the sun,
While the ships sail slowly to birth in the bay,
The flags flutter proudly, the battle is won,
And she waits for her lover’s return.

The maiden’s lover is born from the ships,
On a board of cedar, and a box made of pine,
The widow’s words whisper passing her lips,
“Now, he waits for his lover’s return.”

The Blacksmith

Written By: (Trad. Arr. Stonecircle)

The Blacksmith

Oh, a blacksmith courted me, nine months and better.
When he'd fairly won my heart he wrote me a letter.
With his hammer in his hand he looked so clever
And if I were with my love I would live forever.

Oh where has my love gone, with his cheeks like roses?
He's gone across the sea gathering primroses.
Oh I'm afraid the shining sun might scorch and mar his beauty
And if I were with my love I would do my duty.

Strange news has come to town, strange news is carried.
Strange news runs up and down that my love is married.
Oh I wish them both great joy though they don't hear me
And if I were with my love I would do my duty.

Oh what did you promise me, when you lay beside me?
You said you'd marry me and not deny me.
If I said I'd marry you it was only to try you
So bring your witness love and I'll not deny you.

Oh witness have I none, save God Almighty.
And may He reward you well for the slighting of me.
And her lips grew pale and wan, and her poor heart to tremble,
For to think she'd loved but one and he'd proved deceitful.

Oh, a blacksmith courted me, nine months and better.
When he'd fairly won my heart he wrote me a letter.
With his hammer in his hand he looked so clever
And if I were with my love I would live forever

The Nightingale

Written By: George Schoemaker

The Nightingale*

* Based on the story Laustic, from the Lais of Marie de France

A bird sings in the darkness
In high, leaf-covered trees
Her tune, echoes sweet sadness
For love, lost on the breeze.
It sings, sings of a Lady and her Knight,
Two lovers hiding their love, hiding their fear,
It sings, sings of desire and remorse,
Two lovers gazing through space, from towers near.

They’d wait, wait in their windows,
For light, to drift away
And by, cover of darkness,
‘Till dawn, there they would stay.
They’d speak, whispering gently in the dark.
Two lovers, hiding their love, hiding their fear.
They’d speak, laughing so softly at the moon,
Two lovers, whispering from, stone towers near.

Instrumental—whistle

Bridge
The Master in his anger
Began to question his Maid.
To ask her for the reason
She rises late from her bed.
His Lady to her Lord replied,
With tears descending her cheeks,
“there is no joy so beautiful,
than when the nightingale sings,
nightingale sings.”

Solo—flute

The Lord, laughed in his anger,
And sought the bird from the tree.
He snapped, the neck of the songster,
in front, of the Maiden to see.
The Maid, held back the tears in her eyes,
Smiled at the Lord she despised, while hiding her rage.
The bird, in a small casket made of gold,
To the Knight swiftly is sent, by her young page.

The Knight, sits at his window,
and stares, into the trees.
Where once, sang a sweet songbird,
Whose tune, floats on the breeze.
He speaks, whispering vainly in the dark,
Lingering gently alone, gently alone.
He keeps, keeps closely guarded by his side,
The golden casket with stones, small precious stones.

Discography

2007 "Asterisk and Dragonfly 1997-2007"
2005 "Winter Sky"
2003 "In Concert"
2001 "Alchemy"
1997 "Serendipity"

All CDs (with the exception of Serendipity) have samples available on our website.

PERFORMANCES
(Utah, Salt Lake City)
Abravanel Hall
Kingsbury Hall
Salt Lake Center for the Arts
Downtown Olympic Festival, United Concerts
Cathedral of St. Marks
Hibernian Society, St. Patrick’s Day Parade
Scottish Festival, Murray
2006 Ceilidh & Kirkin'O'th'Tartan!
Utah Arts Festival
Tooele Arts Festival
Pride Day Festival
Celtic Stew Festival
University of Utah, Mayfest Celebration
Westminster College International Festival
Brown Bag Concert Series
First Unitarian Church of Salt Lake City
Salt Lake Arts Academy
Anderson-Foothill Summer Concert Series
Alta Club
La Caille
KTVX Channel 4
KUTV Channel 2
KSL Channel 5
FOX Channel 13
Desert Edge Pub
Hog’s Wallow Pub
Leprechaun Inn
Celtic Seasons Show
Herriman Heritage Festival

(Northern Utah)
Bridger Folk Society Concert Series, Logan
The Spot Light Acoustic Cafe, Layton
Earth Day Celebraton, Ogden
Ogden Nature Center Summer Concert, Ogden
Talent in the Park Concerts, Ogden
Jackson Street Junction, Ogden
The Grind Acoustic Cafe, Ogden
Farmers Market Concert Series, Ogden
Celtic Seasons Show, Logan
Mendon Summer Concert Series
Snowbasin Ski Resort

(Park City Region)
Alta Concert Series
Mulligan’s Irish Pub
Music in the Mountains Series
The Town Lift
The Rustlers Lodge, Alta
Snowbird Ski Resort
The Homestead, Midway

(Central Utah)
Celtic Seasons Show, Orem
Summer Sounds Concert Series, Sundance
Mayfest Celebration, Mount Pleasant
Autumnal Equinox Celebration, Spring City
Payson Scottish Festival, Payson
Special Olympics Opening Ceremonies, Provo

(Southern Utah)
City Concert Series, St. George
House Concert, St. George
House Concert, Hurricane
Moab Arts and Recreation Center, Moab
Star Hall, Moab
Fillmore Arts Festival

(Colorado)
Colorado Irish Festival, Denver
OPUS Fantasy Festival, Denver
Durango Celtic Festival, Durango
Storyville Tavern, Durango
Concert in the Park Series, Ouray
Adam's Mark Hotel, Grand Junction
Blue Sage Center for the Arts, Paonia
Silverton Folk Music Festival, Silverton

(Nevada)
Eureka Opera House, Eureka
Battle Mountain Center, Battle Mountain

(Idaho)
Summer Arts Festival, Pocatello, ID
First Friday Coffeehouse, Pocatello, ID
Pub & Duds, Pocatello, ID

(Montana)
The Caboose, Big Sky, MT

Set List

Possible shows:

2 short sets (50min/60min + encore)

1 long set (90 min + encore)

45-min. school program