LIZ DONALDSON (Bethesda, MD) is a full-time musician and dance caller, and has been playing piano for dancing for many years. She is known for her innovative back-up style incorporating exciting rhythms, textures, and harmony lines in her music. In addition to playing for Scottish, English and American contra and square dances, Liz teaches all these styles, and dances, too!
She is a member of Terpsichore, Waverley Station, and The New Hip Trio. Liz’s latest recording is "English Echoes: English Country Dance Favorites" with Becky Ross on fiddle and Colleen Reed on flute. Also appearing on the CD is bassoonist Bruce Edwards. Liz’s most recent Scottish Country Dance CD "Caledonian Muse" with fiddler Elke Baker and bassist/cellist Ralph Gordon is a welcome addition to "Terpsichore, Scottish Dance Music", a duo recording with Elke. Liz also joins David Knight (fiddle) and Ralph on "Waverley Station: First Stop!" She is the Artistic Director and pianist on the hot live Scottish Country Dance recordings "Memories of Scottish Weekend (‘98) and "More Memories of Scottish Weekend ('02).
Liz has published two books of Scottish tunes: "Scottish Dance Class Tunes" and "Scottish Tune Medleys." In addition, there are two collections of her own tunes: "Rain in the Desert" and the just released, "Moon Over Inverness."
Liz has taught and played at numerous dance weekends and music workshops including Scottish Weekend at Ramblewood (MD), Pinewoods (MA), and Asilomar (CA). Her travels have taken her across the US as well as to Great Britain, Canada, France, and Japan. In 2000-2001 Liz led Performance Tours for the Smithsonian Institution's Piano 300 exhibition and in ‘03 and ‘07 performed with Terpsichore at the Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage in Washington, DC.
Liz also teaches BandAid, ensemble-playing workshops, and enjoys composing tunes, especially waltzes.
In addition to playing and teaching music, Liz is in demand as a caller of Scottish dancing, Scottish Ceilidh, English Country dancing, and American contras and squares. She particularly enjoys working with dancers of all ages and experience levels.
# Music in title: Beyond the Beltway © Liz Donaldson