VALLEY OF THE MOON FIDDLE CAMP
P.M. fiddle, Mark O’Connor Fiddle Camp and Alasdair Fraser’s Valley of the Moon Scottish Fiddling School (USA)
“Because I teach fiddle for a living and occupy a somewhat specific niche in my community of predominately classical violin teachers, I was excited about the idea of receiving a formal teaching endorsement in American Folk music.
The Teacher-Training program provided me with the opportunity to network with other violin and fiddle teachers from many different backgrounds. Of particular inspiration were Corey Ramey, journalist for Strings Magazine and a classical freelance musician in New York City, who gave me some great teaching resources and activities for group classes of young children, which I subsequently used during my children’s fiddle day camp, and Adrianna Ciconne, a Canadian Old-Time Champion Fiddler with whom I have begun to study through Skype.
The remaining portion of my grant was applied to Alasdair Fraser’s Valley of the Moon Scottish Fiddling School in Santa Cruz, CA. I arrived without prior knowledge of Scottish fiddle music, and with minimal background information about the program structure. I couldn’t have been more delighted and satisfied with my week there. I found its participants, members of the international Scottish music-community, to be unparalleled in their welcoming, inclusive, nature, musical skill level, and diversity of experience. I consider the organization and end goal of the workshop (there are 8 different skill -level classes, but all levels learn the same 10 tunes during the week and perform on stage together in a final concert) to be a model for any multi-level, community music gathering. The dedicated, year-round community who makes this festival possible continue to serve as an inspiration to me as I undertake more responsibility and leadership in my local music scene.”