has been involved in filk since 1980. She’s very knowledgeable about filk and about what’s required for filk’s success; she’s very good at working with people, and she continues quietly making sure that the necessary things get done for filk and the community to stay strong.
She was one of the founders of MASSFILC, the Boston area filk club, and has been its treasurer and financial manager for most of its existence. She was the principal individual responsible for arranging and maintaining MASSFILC’s tax_exempt status. Even in those few years when she is not a club officer, she still serves as the official contact point for the club. She moderates its MASSFILC mailing list, and is a voice of calm reason when needed to keep the list on topic.
Ellen has worked on the con committees of all six Boston area filk cons. She was involved in the first ConCertino, and has been advising and staffing every ConCertino since then. She was the treasurer of ConCertino five times, has worked preregistration several times, and been chair once; and none of the cons for which she was treasurer lost money. She provides storage for club supplies and equipment, and handles all the mail orders for songbooks and t-shirts. For three years, she served as their filk liaison to Arisia (the local Boston general SF con) and ran the filk track there.
She handles the club’s applications to run filk program items at the New England Folk Festival (NEFFA), where they have been “taking filk to the folkies”. She has been interviewed on the topic of filk, including a live interview on Japanese radio.
She hosts excellent filk gatherings, and moderates the local predilection for chaos as needed. She is also a reliable “anchor” for filk circles at conventions. Ellen is also a “filk gardener”, always welcoming and encouraging newcomers, helping them understand the rules that a particular circle is running by and reminding them about the “pick” option.
Ellen’s willingness to share her vehicle has gotten a number of filkers to cons they otherwise wouldn’t have been able to attend. Her ability to pack huge amounts of cargo into her van is legendary.
She’s a strong supporter of Interfilk auctions, and a winner of multiple “Interfilk Salutes.”
She sings, plays guitar and recorder, and while not a prolific writer, is the author of such filks as “Witnesses Waltz Too” and “The Work of the Weyr Folk.”
Without ever drawing attention to her contributions, Ellen has willingly and competently worked to promote filk, frequently by taking on the many thankless and routine tasks that go into keeping clubs, conventions and filk tracks running year after year. There would be a Boston_area filk community without Ellen _ but her quiet, no_nonsense contributions and gentle steering have helped make it as strong as it is.
For these contributions to filk music and the filk community, Ellen Kranzer is inducted into the Filk Hall of Fame this second day of April, Two Thousand and Eleven.
Photo credit: Phillip K Mills