Kari Tauringis a Nordic folk musician, cultural educator, and spiritual leader living in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA.
Kari was born to a Norwegian-identified family in Minnesota with summers spent with extended family on their heritage farm in Wisconsin. She has performed her original folk music in the Twin Cities and around the Midwest from the early 1990’s.
Bachelor of Arts Philosophy and English, University of St. Thomas, St. Paul – 1989
Master of Arts Education, University of St. Thomas, St. Paul – 1996
Ordained – Church of Spiritual Humanism, September 2007
Runes and Old Norse poetry
Kari began studying the Elder Futhark runes and Norse mythological poetry as an undergraduate at the University of St. Thomas in 1989. Plunging her identity as a Norwegian American into a time before lefse and coffee was life changing! This self study informed her artistic life in the most profound way in 2003 when she began reconstructing the ways of thevölvaor staff carrying women of her heritage.
A völva– staff carrying woman in Old Norse language, Kari “carries the staff” of Old Norse history and tradition for her family of origin, greater community in Minnesota, and the folk art community that sustains her work. As an artist, Kari combines her deep scholarship and immersion in the traditional folk music and dance community to create new interpretations of what it means to be Nordic.
Volva Stavis Kari’s original Nordic spiritual system which teaches aligning the body with the cosmic world tree through the use of staff rhythm for journey and rune expression. Her Volva Stav Manual (2010) is available as a free download along accompanying videos on Youtube. She has many students across the United States and Scandinavia. TheVölva Stav Guildis a group of eight women who use this methodology in their personal, professional, and community practices in Minnesota and Wisconsin.
Tauring published her first rune book in 2007 and replaced it in 2016 with“The Runes: A Deeper Journey.”It is available as an iPhone App, a full teaching tool you can hear Kari sing the runes in their various pronunciations and access full chapters of her book.
Folk Music and Danceimmersion has yieldedfour Nordic root recordingsand countless performances with videos of past performances available on Youtube. Kari began studying traditional folk music and dance in 2006 and received aFY2011 Folk and Traditional Artsgrant for the study of rune shapes and postures within traditional Norwegian dance. She establishedNordic Roots Dancewith Carol Sersland the same year. She continues to dance with the active groups in the Twin Cities and teaches a monthly dance session for beginners.
Alt for Norge(Season One, 2010 tvnorge.no)
Kari brought her unique brand of staff carrying Norwegian Minnesotan to Norway in Season One of Norway’s favorite reality show, Alt for Norge (everything for Norway). Fans called her kjæreKari med staven or dear Kari with the staff. Her rendition of the popular old song, “Kjærringe med staven” (honored lady with a staff) was used in advertising for subsequent seasons. Kari presents on Alt for Norge experiences to Norwegian culture groups throughout the US.