Concert Season 2018-2019

2018-2019 Concert Season

Irish Music with Bua
Thursday, September 27, 8 pm
Shepherdstown Presbyterian Church

Bua evokes the good times that Irish traditional music so often celebrates ,” playing in a manner “largely forgotten in today’s overly polished Irish music world .” With “a precision and intensity that is rarely heard on this side of the Atlantic,” their sound stands out among modern bands in the genre by “keeping the music down the path of tradition” while still being able to “raise the rafters with their playing, charm with their singing, and delight with their contemporary energy.” Based in Chicago, Illinois—a long-celebrated center of Irish traditional music—Bua “has established itself individually and as a group in the eyes and ears of the traditional community,” and their 2011 release, Down the Green Fieldsfinds Bua exploring the forgotten sounds from the heyday of Irish music in the City of Big Shoulders with a blend of enchantingly stark song arrangements and bold, pulsing dance tunes. Lauded by The Bluegrass Situation as being the top Irish album of the past five years, Down the Green Fields stands as a testament, from beginning to end, of the lasting essentials of the Irish tradition”.

Bua includes Brian Ó hAirt on vocals, sean-nós dance, concertina, Sean Gavin on flute, uilleann pipes, whistle, Devin Shepherd on fiddle. and Brian Miller on guitar amd bouzouki.  Bua has performed and taught at many popular Irish music festivals in North America including the Milwaukee Irish Festival, Dublin Irish Festival, Goderich Celtic Roots Festival, Bethlehem Celtic Classic, and Catskills Irish Arts Week. They have also been honored representatives of the Irish tradition at some of the top folk festivals in the US including the Old Songs Festival, Great Lakes Folk Festival, Lowell Folk Festival, City Folk Festival, University of Chicago Folk Festival and the National Folk Festival. This exposure and ensuing popularity afforded them the title ‘Top Traditional Group’ of 2009, a distinction awarded them by the Irish Music Association.

Advance tickets are $20 adults, $18 seniors and $15 members and $10 students. At the door: $25 adults, $22 seniors, $20 members and $10 children/students.  Advance tickets are available at O’Hurley’s General Store or from Brown Paper Tickets.
For more information call Joanie at (304) 263-2531 or email updf@earthlink.net.

Scottish Fiddler Alasdair Fraser and Natalie Haas
Thursday, October 25, 8 pm
Shepherdstown Presbyterian Church

The musical partnership between Alasdair Fraser, long regarded as Scotland’s premier fiddle ambassador, and the sizzlingly-talented Californian cellist Natalie Haas may not seem an obvious one, but the duo’s dazzling teamwork, driving rhythms, and their shared passion for improvising on the melody and the groove of Scottish tunes has helped reconstruct and revive the Scottish tradition of playing dance music on violin and cello. They have toured internationally for over eighteen years, wowing audiences at festivals and concerts worldwide with their unique sound and have released five critically acclaimed and award winning albums along the way.

The musical partnership between consummate performer Alasdair Fraser, “the Michael Jordan of Scottish fiddling”, and brilliant Californian cellist Natalie Haas spans the full spectrum between intimate chamber music and ecstatic dance energy. Over the last 18 years of creating a buzz at festivals and concert halls across the world, they have truly set the standard for fiddle and cello in traditional music. They continue to thrill audiences internationally with their virtuosic playing, their near-telepathic understanding and the joyful spontaneity and sheer physical presence of their music.

Fraser has a concert and recording career spanning over 30 years, with a long list of awards, accolades, radio and television credits, and feature performances on top movie soundtracks (Last of the Mohicans, Titanic, etc.). In 2011, he was inducted into the Scottish Traditional Music Hall of Fame. Haas, a graduate of the Juilliard School of Music, is one of the most sought after cellists in traditional music today. She has performed and recorded with a who’s who of the fiddle world including Mark O’Connor, Natalie MacMaster, Irish supergroups Solas and Altan, Liz Carroll, Dirk Powell, Brittany Haas, Darol Anger, Jeremy Kittel, Hanneke Cassel, Laura Cortese, and many more.

This seemingly unlikely pairing of fiddle and cello is the fulfillment of a long-standing musical dream for Fraser. His search eventually led him to find a cellist who could help return the cello to its historical role at the rhythmic heart of Scottish dance music, where it stood for hundreds of years before being relegated to the orchestra. The duo’s debut recording, Fire & Grace, won the coveted the Scots Trad Music “Album of the Year” award, the Scottish equivalent of a Grammy. Since its release, the two have gone on to record four more critically acclaimed albums that blend a profound understanding of the Scottish tradition with cutting-edge string explorations. In additional to performing, they both have motivated generations of string players through their teaching at fiddle camps across the globe.

Advance tickets are $20 adults, $18 seniors and $15 members and $10 students. At the door: $25 adults, $22 seniors, $20 members and $10 children/students.  Advance tickets are available at O’Hurley’s General Store or from Brown Paper Tickets.
For more information call Joanie at (304) 263-2531 or email updf@earthlink.net.

Scandinavian Holiday Concert with Andrea Hoag, and Melissa Running
Sunday, December 23, at 4pm
St Peter’s Lutheran Church 

Scandinavian music is enchanting for it’s unusual rhythms and it’s ethereal harmonies, and the perfect music to usher in one of the darkest nights of the year.  Grammy Award nominee, Andrea Hoag, one of America’s finest Swedish fiddlers will be joined by Melissa Running on the Swedish keyed-fiddle, the nykelharpa.  Located in the lovely intimate atmosphere of St. Peter’s Lutheran Church, it’s the perfect way to usher in the holiday season.

Tickets are $20 adults, $18 seniors, $15 members and $10 students,  and will be available  online from Brown Paper Tickets, by mail (send a check to SMaD, PO Box1293, Shepherdstown, WV  25443 with your order), or at the door.

Fiddle Summit Showcase
Friday, January 5, 8pm
Shepherdstown Presbyterian Church

This annual concert presents some of the finest fiddlers from a variety of traditions, including French Canadian, English, Scottish, Irish, New England, and Appalachian into a showcase concert with some extraordinary accompaniment.  Sean Heely is a national Scottish Fiddle champions whose fiery renditions of Scottish and Irish fiddle music are in great demand, French Canadian fiddler, Pascal Gemme is the dynamic fiddler who drives the music of super star band Genticorum, highlights of last year’s Washington Revels.  Old-time fiddle wizard, Rachel Eddy, has been steeped in the traditional music of West Virginia all her life, and has garnered praise and prizes for her music both at home and abroad.  She regularly performs with the Pittsburgh band, The Early Mays, and with Ken and Brad Kolodner. Baltimore-based clawhammer banjo player, Brad Kolodner, represents the next generation of Old-Time musicians pushing the boundaries of the tradition into uncharted territory. Regarded for his delicate touch, expressive style, and original compositions, Kolodner has rapidly gained national attention for his unique approach to the banjo.  Joined by  his father, the highly acclaimed hammered dulcimer player and fiddler, Ken Kolodner, they form a powerful trio.  Fiddler, Jaige Trudel and guitarist Adam Broome form the heart of two dynamic contra dance and English dance bands, Crowfoot and Maivish.  Their driving beat and intricate arrangements make them a delight to listen and dance to. Together, this incredible line-up promises to bring a night of enchantment to all who love the folk violin. Co-sponsored with Upper Potomac Fiddle Retreat. Jam session to follow.Visit the web page to get more information to sign up for classes. Early bird discount before Dec. 1!  Admission is $20 adults, $18 seniors, $15 SMD members, $10 students. For more information call Joanie at (304) 263-2531 or email updf@earthlink.net.

Squeeze the Bag!
Saturday, January 19, 8pm
Shepherd University, Reynolds Hall

The bellows-blown bagpipe is a quieter, more parlor-oriented cousin to the great highland bagpipes most folks are familiar with. You’ll see pipes that are far more likely to be played with flutes, guitars, mandolins, bouzoukis, drums and other instruments in a session-like atmosphere for concerts or dances in smaller, more intimate settings. Four kinds of bagpipes will be featured: the Scottish smallpipe, the quieter cousin of the great highland pipes, the Irish uilleann (or Union) pipes, Northumbrian smallpipes and the Border pipes which are played in the border region between Scotland and England.
The concert is divided into three sections… We’ll open with the tiny Northumbrian pipes of England with Dick Hensold then we’ll move to Irish section of the program with an outstanding uilleann piper, Jerry O’Sullivan whose reputation for technical and melodic mastery of the instrument is unsurpassed. The Scottish section of the concert will feature piper, Nick Hudson, a renowned performer on highland, border and smallpipes, as well as Tim Cummings, who has a diverse repertoire which includes French, Appalachian and other traditions, and Iain MacHarg, a versatile piper who grew up steeped in piping from French, Scottish and Irish traditions who runs the Vermont Institute for the Celtic Arts.  It will all be tied together by our host piper, Bob Mitchell and more, in a set of music from the highlands and border regions of Scotland and Cape Breton on both Scottish smallpipes and Border pipes.
The concert will take place at Shepherd University’s Reynolds Hall.
Co-sponsored with the Upper Potomac Pipers Weekend. Classes available in many kinds of bellows blown bagpipes, flute, whistle and mixed-instruments. More information is on the web page.
Admission: $20 adults, $18 seniors, $15 SMD members, $10 students. For more information call the Upper Potomac office at 304.263.2531 or email updf@earthlink.net. Come on out and watch these pipers Squeeze the Bag..

Celebration of Strings: English Dance Music and our annual Hammered Dulcimer Showcase
Friday, March 9, 8 pm
Shepherdstown Presbyterian Church

The hammered dulcimer is alive and well in Shepherdstown, West Virginia; not only does the area boast two of the instrument’s most respected builders and designers, but also is home to the Upper Potomac Music Weekends, where hammered dulcimer players, fiddlers and other musicians share tunes and techniques and explore a range of musical styles over three days of workshops, concerts and jam sessions on Shepherd University’s campus and the surrounding historic buildings several times each year. The concert this year features special guests, Belgian-born multi-instrumentalist Paul Oorts and pianist Dave Wiesler, who play inspiring dance music in such bands as Cabert Sauvignon, Gigmeisters, and Goldcrest . Representing our dulcimer staff will be Steve Schneider, Tina Bergmann and TBA playing a range of repertoire from Classical to Cuban and from Celtic to Klezmer.  Come and be amazed!
Admission: $20 adults, $18 seniors, $15 SMD members, $10 students. For more information call Joanie at (304) 263-2531 or email updf@earthlink.net.

Advertisements