Guest of Honor: Playing Rapunzel
Mich Sampson and Marilisa Valtazanou have been performing together as Playing Rapunzel since 2005. They have played at filk conventions in four countries, have released two albums (Abseiling for Beginners and Hanging by a Hair), and perform professionally as a folk duo, sneakily introducing filk songs to unsuspecting audiences.
They sing lots of soupy harmonies; in addition, Mich plays the piano and talks a lot, while Marilisa plays any instrument she can get her hands on and giggles at what Mich is saying. They expect to be flailing excitedly about coming to OVFF for the entirety of the coming year.
Toastmaster: Judith Hayman
Judith Hayman is a woman of many parts. Professionally she is retired from nursing, where she worked in emergency, public health and teaching. She has too many hobbies. These include reading, sewing, guitar playing, song writing, singing, beading and oh, dear lord, genealogy (a time sink worse than Facebook). She also indulges in kitten worship via TinyKIttens.com.
She has made two recordings of her songs, Sea of Stars and Whither Go. She loves to decorate.
And for the last twenty-six she has served on the concom of FilKONtario, often as conchair and typically in multiple positions, all of them involving innovation. She has served Interfilk as a director since 1994. In 2007 she was inducted into the Filk Hall of Fame.
While she cannot say there is NEVER a dull moment, there rarely is one.
Honored Listener: Teresa Gunderson
Teresa hasn't always been fannish, but apparently it's in her soul – music definitely is. A life long music lover, there isn't a style that doesn't have at least some charms for her. Stumbling into filk has been especially magical for her, because being immersed in music is her happy place. Getting to know the musicians and writers and singers, being able to watch as the magic is made, has been an honor and a joy.
Her first convention, long before she'd heard of filk, was an Archon back in the 1990's. After she began living near Chicago with Daniel “gundo” Gunderson in the early 2000's, they began going to conventions and finding themselves in the filk rooms with Daniel's guitar.
Over the years she's sung a bit in circles, and performed a bit on stage. Rumor has it that she's even picking up a ukulele now and then! No matter what, though, she's listening. Next time you're in a circle, look for the purple-haired lady crocheting, or drawing, or just loving the sounds.
Interfilk Guest: Dana Katz-Buchshtav
has loved filk since running into it in a translated book at age 14, and has been active in the Israeli filk scene since 2005. In that time, they have written, translated, and sang filk; won a couple of local filk contests; organized con 'sings, house 'sings and filk contests; and co-ran a website for Israeli filk by the name of Fuzzy Fish.
When not filking, Dana writes fanfic, works as a computer programmer, parents a small child, and wastes time on Facebook.