We went into Albany this afternoon to visit the Russian Winter Festival at the Washington Avenue Armory. We were prompted to go by the girls who had been visited at school by some of the dancers who were performing. In the end Exile #4 accepted a better offer for a playdate nearby but one of Exile #3's friends came with us in her place.
We arrived to find a band playing outside - featuring this extraordinary balalaika contrabass.
It was also our first taste of some Russian dancing...
...with audience participation.
Inside, we saw the dancers who had inspired our visit:
They were very good indeed. Quite a far cry from our only other experience of Russian folk dancing - when the soon to be winner and her partner from So You Think You Can Dance Season 5 made a valiant effort at the genre and did not have their best night.
You can see some more pictures on my Flickr account (click on any of the pictures above, or here for the slideshow).