Back to All Events

Sun and Moon - Bringing in the Light!

  • Norway House 913 East Franklin Avenue Minneapolis, MN, 55404 United States (map)

Let's make sun crowns and moon hats and learn a few songs about the sun and moon!

GENERAL: $20  |  MEMBERS: $15

A Bit of Background

Celebrating Light in the Darkness is a deep need in the very bones of those living in the far North. On the old Julian calendar, this date marked the Winter Solstice. On the Primstav calendar and in the continuing traditions across Scandinavia and especially Sweden, December 13 is Santa Lucia's Day! In the story, a young woman from Sicily gave her dowery to the poor. Her enraged fiance had her declared a witch. They attempted to have her burned at the stake but the fire would not stay lit! I think of St. Lucy as the ever-present Scandinavian Sun Goddess (Sunna) whose light shines for the benefit of all. Her gifts are not to be owned by a single man or powerful patriarch.

On St. Lucy Day, a ritualized pageant takes place in homes and communities where the eldest daughter dons a crown of candles and all the girls dress in white with red sashes and deliver spiraled yellow cakes named "light cats" to their parents. The boys dress in conical hats with star-tipped scepters. Called "moon boys" perhaps after the Old Norse god of the moon, Mani, Sunna's brother. They walk and sing with their sisters in a cosmically ancient procession of the night sky.

Photo by Eli Solheim

Photo by Eli Solheim


Kari Tauring is a Minneapolis based Nordic folk musician, dancer, and storyteller and author of “The Runes: A Deeper Journey”. A volva in Old Norse, she “carries the staff” of spiritual tradition within the folkway of her Nordic ancestry through performance, education, and authorship. She grew up in a Norwegian family in Minnesota with summers spent with extended family in Wisconsin. Kari combines deep scholarship and personal practice to create new interpretations of what it means to be Nordic. Called “innovative folk” music, Tauring gives modern relevance to the ancient poems and songs that inspire her.

Kari played original folk music in the Twin Cities and around the Midwest from the early 1990’s. From 1999 – 2006 she produced large scale Winter Solstice celebrations with original music, dancers, puppets, and visual artists. She has several recordings and parts of these celebrations can be seen on youtube etc.

Her early studies of Runes and ancient texts about them (1989) began making their way into her musical life in 2003 as she began reconstructing the staff carrying women’s traditions of her Norwegian heritage. Using the staff and stick for chanting runes is at the center of  Völva Stav is her original work aligning the body and its processes with the world tree and its many inhabitants. The use of staff rhythm for journey and rune expression, and the dovetailing of rune postures within Nordic movement is unique, profound, and well received around the world.

Kari began studying Scandinavian folk dance in 2006 and putting rune postures to traditional Scandinavian folk dances sparked her programs in Nordic Roots Dance in 2011. She continues to dance in performance groups, teach runes in the dance workshops, and connect the very ancient to the very modern through the threads of these folk ways.