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American Cafe Orchestra


The folk traditions of THE UNITED STATES are combined with traditional music of Ireland, Scandinavia, and Hungary from the American Café Orchestra. Not surprisingly ambitious-sounding name, the group is truly a duo offering New England-born fiddler Ruthie Dornfeld and Danish guitarist Morten Alfred Høirup. Dornfeld (a previous person in Boston-based contredance ensemble Yankee Ingenuity, eclectic string music group the Poodles) conceived the American Café Orchestra after conference Høirup in a bluegrass event in Denmark in 1985. During regular appointments to each other’s homeland, both instrumentalists began carrying out in cafés and folk night clubs through the entire Northeastern USA and European countries. The duo released their only recording, Egyptian Dominos, in 1992.

Quick Facts

Full Name American Café Orchestra
Music Songs Dark Island, Grey Brothers' Holiday, Festival Waltz, Rain, Doc Harris' Hornpipe, The Belled Buzzard, Oikotie, Reunion Waltz, Nightmare Polka, Sandy River Belle, Kalamatianos, Verret's / Newlywed's / Reel Du Voyageur / Miss Shepard's, Bell, Elzic's Farewell / Villi Ruusu / Se Nu Stiger Solen, Dailey's Reel/Golden Wedding/The Reconciliation, Back in the Rocking Chair, Schottische from Lima, Big Scioty/Come Along Jody, Beatrice, Alsarby Polska, Sweet Nights Polska, San Rafael, Holev Vals, Assim e o Maxixe, Over Sjö och Land, Onion Cubes, Egyptian Domino Waltz, Dead Girl, Liquor Seller, Opera Reel/Sean Frank's, Verret's/Newlywed's Reel/Reel du Voyageur/Miss Shepard's, Highlander's Farewell/Waiting for Nancy/Kalotaszegi Legenyes
Albums Egyptian Dominoes, Nightmare Polka, The Early Years

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A Journey to Planet Sanity 2013 Documentary performer: "Music for a Found Harmonium" - as Penguin Café Orchestra
Cedar Rapids 2011 performer: "Nothing Really Blue" - as Penguin Café Orchestra
Buck 2011 Documentary performer: "NUMBERS 1 TO 4", "PRELUDE AND YODEL"
Capitalism: A Love Story 2009 Documentary performer: "Music For A Found Harmonium" - as Penguin Café Orchestra
(500) Days of Summer 2009 "Perpetuum Mobile"
Mary and Max 2009 performer: "Perpetuum Mobile" - as Penguin Café Orchestra / performer: "Prelude and Yodel"
Year of the Dog 2007/I performer: "Steady State" written by nm0420265, "Music for a Found Harmonium" written by nm0420265
The Good Girl 2002 performer: "Air" 1984, "Steady State" 1981
The Princess and the Warrior 2000 performer: "Nothing Really Blue"
Au pays des Juliets 1992 performer: "When in Rome - live", "Broadcasting from Rome"
Talk Radio 1988 performer: "Telephone & Rubber Band" - as The Penguin Cafe Orchestra
Malcolm 1986 performer: "Music for a Found Harmonium", "Paul's Dance", "Yodel 1", "Telephone and Rubber Band", "The Ecstasy Of Dancing Fleas" - uncredited

Music Department

Music Department

Mystery Bird 2011 Documentary short music by
Stuck to Play 2010 Short musician
Au pays des Juliets 1992 musician
Malcolm 1986 music performers



Mystery Bird 2011 Documentary short
Les pantins 2008 Short

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