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Steffensson’s trio

The driving force behind Steffensson’s Trio is a love for dance music. We came together with a clear goal: to revive the pre-war social dances of Ruhnu Island.

This unique heritage is made possible thanks to Jakob Steffensson, born on Ruhnu island in 1924 and passed away in 2011, in whose honor we have named ourselves. Like many of his compatriots, the turmoil of war led Steffensson to flee Ruhnu to Sweden as a refugee in 1944. Taking it upon himself to preserve the island’s dances and tunes for future generations, Mr. Steffenson filmed the dances with their accompanying music in Sweden in 1990. We have learned to play the melodies just like him. If there were a dance club in Ruhnu, these would be the tunes and dances you’d hear!

In the book “Så dansade vi på Runö,” Leif-Evert Matsson, who assisted in recording and transcribing the dances, writes:

“My first and lasting impression of these dances and melodies is and continues to be a great sense of peacefulness; they make a person happy. […] It is our great hope that you will enjoy these Ruhnu dances and melodies as much as we do, and that you will have many opportunities to use them just as they are meant to be used: to dance them, play them, and have fun with them. Much joy to you.”

Monika Väliste – flute
Marta Chan – violin
Hans Mihkel Vares
– violin


photo: Kerit Ilves