December… Holiday Potluck and Dance

Saturday, December 3

10am Shepherdstown Christmas Parade… the morris dancers participate and perform afterwards at around noon.
2pm Old-time Jam Session at the Blantons (RSVP, see below)
6pm Holiday Potluck (bring a dish to share)
7:30pm New Dancers Workshop
8pm Contra Dance

Join us for our Holiday Contra Dance and potluck featuring the fine music of Critton Hollow String Band, with Joe Herrmann on fiddle, Sam Herrmann on hammered dulcimer and mandolin, Joe Fallon on bass, banjo and accordion, and Pete Gordon on guitar, to the fun and fantastic calling of Janine Smith and special guest, Nevada Tribble.  Expect a lot of squares, as Janine has the best assortment around!

Our annual holiday potluck starts at 6pm in the decorated hall of the War Memorial Building. Bring your favorite dish to share and visit with old friends and make new ones as we celebrate the season with this annual event.

There will be a new dancers workshop at 7:30pm. Guest calling of a few dances by Nevada Tribble. No partner is needed. Bring clean soft-soled shoes to protect the dance floor, and potluck snacks for the break!

This dance is guaranteed to be a highlight of the season, with the high energy, fun filled calling of Janine Smith, and the fine old time tunes of Critton Hollow! We expect a lot of old friends to come out and join us on this one, as the Crits have a long history with SMaD!
Admission: $12 adults, $8 SMaD members, $5 dancers under 12, Shepherd Students with ID

Old Time musicians attending the dance are invited to an afternoon jam from 2-5pm at the Blantons. Space is very limited so RSVP to Joanie Blanton, to get details and directions. Email updf@earthlink.net or call (304) 263-2531 for more informaton.

Musicians should look forward to the January workshops offered by the Upper Potomac Music Weekends, the Fiddle Retreat and the Pipers Weekend.  Both weekends offer concerts, in addition to our co-sponsored Fiddle Retreat dance in January!

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November… A lot to be thankful for!

Yes, there’s a lot of great stuff happening in November, and we hope you will come out and join us!

  • Day of the Dead, Day of Dance
  • Saturday, November 5, 10AM-6pm

Join the Hicks with Sticks Border Morris and their other morris comrades for performances on the street in Shepherdstown and Martinsburg.

  • 10AM on King Street behind the Shepherdstown Library
  • 11AM at Martinsburg Library Plaza
  • 2:30PM at Canterbury of Shepherdstown
  • 3:30PM Pub Stop with Singing at the Mecklinburg Inn
  • 5PM Final Stand on King Street behind Shepherdstown Library

Contra Dance 

Saturday, November 5 at 8PM  at the Shepherdstown War Memorial Building

Join us for a lively evening of dance as caller, Anna Rain calls a fabulous array of contra dances to the music of Maivish, with Jaige Trudel on fiddle, Adam Broome on guitar, and Mathew Olwell on flute, beatbox, and foot percussion.  We have a beginners workshop at 7:30PM, the dance starts at 8.  Potluck snacks at the break.  Please wear soft-soled shoes to protect the floor.  Admission is $12 adults, $8 members (you should join!), $5 for Shepherd Students with ID and children under 12.

Concert featuring the lively Cape Breton Music of Cassie and Maggie MacDonald!

Wednesday, November 16 at 8PM at the Shepherdstown Presbyterian Church

These two young women from Nova Scotia two encompass everything you could ask for in a musical act. Exciting and innovative, they have found a perfect balance between musical integrity, and sheer entertainment. While staying true to their Celtic roots, Cassie & Maggie MacDonald have explored and tested the boundaries of traditional music, bringing a breath of fresh air to the genre with original compositions and arrangements. They have been enchanting audiences far and wide with their infectious energy, driving rhythms and lilting melodies.

“What an unbelievably gifted duo. … The train is just gathering steam and leaving the station on these new stars. It is going to be a glorious journey, and it is already well-begun.”Live Ireland Radio, Dublin

Live Ireland Radio’s NEW GROUP OF THE YEAR ~ Chicago Irish-American Newspaper’s EMERGING ARTIST RECORDING OF THE YEAR ~ Galaxie Radio Rising Stars ~ Independent Music Award “World Song of the Year” nominees ~ multiple Canadian Folk Music Award, East Coast Music Award and Music Nova Scotia Award nominees.
Tickets: $22 adults, $20 seniors, $18 members, $10 students, Advance tickets on sale at O’Hurley’s General Store, or by mail. For more information call Joanie at (304) 263-2531 or email updf@earthlink.net.

END OF NOVEMBER BLOG POST
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October’s Glory…

October Brings our second dance and our first concert… and Irish Concert with singer, Aoife Clancy and guitar-wizard, Robin Bullock.

Contra Dance, Saturday, October 1 with Ricochet and Andrea Nettleton~

Join us for a nice evening of contra with Atlanta based caller, Andrea Nettleton, calling to the fine music of Staunton-based band, Ricochet, with Wather Hojka and Rya Martin.  We have a beginner’s workshop at 7:30PM for new dancers, and the dance starts at 8PM.  Potluck snacks at the break.  Admission, $12 adults, $8 members, $5 Shepherd students (wirh current ID) and children under 12.
Walter Hojka relocated to Staunton, Virginia in 2010 from Chicago. He’s a veteran of several Chicago-based bands, including Dr. Hojka’s Medicine Show and Good Gravity, and currently plays with the Virginia-based band The Rhythmajigs as well as with other groups. He taught for years at the Old Town School of Folk Music in Chicago and currently teaches general music to elementary school students in two West Virginia schools.

Rya Martin has been playing piano since the age of five but first became infatuated with contra dance and music when she moved to Charlottesville, Virginia in 1999. She has played with Catharsis and Floorplay and currently also plays with Staunton, VA-based WheelHouse. She’s been a featured performer at the Springforth Ball in Richmond, Virginia, Charlottesville Fall Festival, Palmetto Bug Stomp in Charleston, SC, Fall Frolic in Harrisburg, PA, and Catapult Showcase in Atlanta, GA.

Irish Music Concert with Aoife Clancy & Robin Bullock
Friday, October 7 at  8PM

Put together award winning, multi-instrumentalist and “Celtic guitar god” Robin Bullock with former Cherish the Ladies singer, Aoife Clancy and you have the makings of a fabulous evening of Irish traditional music and song.  These two amazing performers have combined their talents to make a wonderful show, full of lively songs and stories and intricate solos and accompaniment.  The concert will be held at the St. Peter’s Lutheran Church, at 110 N. King Street, Shepherdstown, WV 25443 at 8pm.  Tickets are $20 adults, $18 seniors, $15 members and $10 child/student.  For information call 304-263-2531, email upperpotomac@gmail.com .

END OF OCTOBER BLOG, entries below are past events!

Summer’s End, Back to Dancing!

As we enter the final Dog Days of Summer, families look to the return to the school year, and here at Shepherdstown Music and Dance, we see a return to our dances and other programs!

First Dance!  Saturday, September 3!

We start the fall with our first dance on Saturday, September 3, with Caroline Barnes calling to the music of Honeysuckle Rose!  This all-star band features Andrea Hoag on fiddle, Paul Oorts on mandolin, guitar, bouzouki, melodeon and more, Liz Donaldson on piano, and Ralph Gordon on bass.  We will hold a beginners workshop at 7:30pm, the dance starts at 8pm.  Potluck snacks welcome at the break.  Please wear soft-soled shoes to protect the floor at the Shepherdstown War Memorial Building.  Admission is $12 adults, $8 members, and $5 for Shepherd Students and dancers under 12.  Join now and save on a whole season’s worth of dances and concerts!

Here’s a nice video of Honeysuckle Rose at the Glen Echo Dance a few years back!

Shepherdstown Border Morris resumes practice on Monday, August 22 for the fall season and we are looking for new dancers to join us!  Come learn fun dances, danced to live music, perform both in Shepherdstown and in other locales with other morris teams at fairs, festivals and the like.  We are a fun group of folks who enjoy singing, dancing, and kayaking together on local streams and more!  Call Joanie at (304) 263-2531 or email her at upperpotomac@gmail.com for details.  Here’s a video of one of our dances from a few years back…

Check out our future programs on the dance and concert pages! There are more programs to come that are still TBA! So keep an eye on future posts!

END OF AUGUST 2016 POST…….

April starts with a Tempest, and Ends with a Celebration of May Day!

Come and Join us for our First Saturday Dance!

Saturday, April 2, 8PM at the Shepherdstown War Memorial Building.

The fabulous BOB ISAACS calls his original contras to the innovative driving music of TEMPEST. All the way from New York, Tempest is composed of Tim Ball on fiddle, Chuck Abell on guitar and Harry Aceto on bass. Please join us for delicious potluck snacks at the break and a free introductory dance-figure lesson at 7:30pm. Admission is $12 for nonmembers, $8 for members and $5 for dancers 12 years and under, as well as Shepherd U students with Rambler cards.

Here’s a video of the band playing for a dance…

May Day! May Day!

Saturday, April 30 (Tentative Schedule)

Join Morris Dancers, Musicians, Maidens, Fools, Mystical Creatures and Merry Revelers all to celebrate the spring in this annual event in the center of Shepherdstown.  All are invited to join in the fun… dressing in celebratory spring attire or costume to suit the occasion for the parade down German Street to the Maypole.

At the Maypole there will be singing, pariticpatory dances, morris dance performances and other revelry including our mayor’s annual address to celebrate Arbor Day with a poem by Wendy Maddox. The Padstow Horse will cavort about the green (see video below) to the Padstow May Song, and the traditional morris cake will be served to bring good luck, prosperity and fertility to the new season.

At the end of the Ceremony, our 22ft tall maypole will be wrapped, while others dance a lively spiral dance around it and small children wrap their own smaller maypoles on the periphery!

There will be ongoing morris dance performances later in the day! Come and join us!

May Contra Dance!
Saturday, May 7 8PM

Local favorite Steve Gester calls contras to the Irish flavored band featuring Jeff Thomas on concertina, WAMMIE award winning guitarist, Pat Egan and Tabby Finch on piano.

Please join us for fabulous potluck snacks at the break and a free introductory dance-figure lesson at 7:30pm. Admission is $12 for nonmembers, $8 for members and $5 for dancers 12 years and under, as well as Shepherd U students with Rambler cards.

This will be our last regularly scheduled dance until September!

 

End of April/May post.

Chilly March Winds, Hot March Music

March starts off with our first Saturday contradance…

March Contra Dance
Saturday, March 5: 8PM

David Giusti calls lively contra dances to the fine music of Elke Baker on fiddle, Paul Oorts on guitar, tenor banjo, accordion, and mandolin, and Liz Donaldson on piano at the Shepherdstown War Memorial Building.  Beginners workshop at 7:30PM, dance starts at 8PM.  All levels welcome, no partners needed. Please wear clean, soft-soled shoes to protect the floor. Potluck snacks at the break.  Admission is $12 adults, $8 SMD members, $5 dancers under 12 years old.  For more information contact Becky at (304) 870-4118.

Two fine concerts this month…

Celebration of Strings: Appalachian Music with Hickory Jack and Hammered Dulcimer Showcase
Friday, March 11, 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 from southern Virginia, WV fiddle champion Erynn Marshall along with banjo player and guitarist, Carl Jones who form the fine old-time duo Hickory Jack. Representing our dulcimer staff will be Ann Lough, Ruth Smith, Bob Shank and a fine player from Barcelona, Spain, Marina Albero, a self-taught player whose repertoire follows the history of the instrument from early music to fiery flamenco music played with great finesse and skill.
Admission: $20 adults, $18 seniors, $15 SMD members, $10 students. For more information call Joanie at (304) 263-2531 or email updf@earthlink.net.

Masters of the Celtic Harp: Gráinne Hambly & William Jackson
Wednesday, March 23
St. Peters Lutheran Church
Two Sides of Celtic, two great players. One fantastic show.
Quite simply, Gráinne Hambly and William Jackson are two of the foremost harpers of Ireland and Scotland. Combining their extraordinary talents on harp as well as concertina, tinwhistle and bouzouki, The Masters of the Celtic Harp, have been performing all over the country and dazzling audiences with their artistry. Their Two Sides of Celtic show is a special treat.

Since 1998 Gráinne Hambly has been touring extensively throughout the United States and has not only garnered an ever-growing following of devoted harp enthusiasts but has managed to cross over and capture the Irish music fan with the taste for the fast, driving reels and jigs of traditional music. She has broken the genteel parlor image and elevated the stature of the harp right up there with the fiddles and pipes in the realm of dynamic dance music. Add to that the unsurpassed expressive quality the harp has in her hands in the rendition of age-old airs and laments and you have the masterful performance of an experienced and renowned player.

A lifelong County Mayo resident, Gráinne has not rested on the laurels of winning the senior All-Ireland titles on harp and concertina in 1994 and then the prestigious Keadue and Granard harp competitions. Her three critically acclaimed solo CDs, The Thorn Tree (2006), Between the Showers (1999) and Golden Lights Green Shadows, (2003) are “must haves” for every Irish harp player and fan. She has also recorded with numerous other artists. She has also published two books of her arrangements. She tours most of the year and has appeared at most of the major harp and Irish music festivals in the U.S. and Europe.

William Jackson of Glasgow has been at the forefront of Scottish traditional music for more than 35 years. Besides his stature as one of the leading harpers and multi-instrumentalists in Scotland, William has gained an international reputation as a composer. His “Land of Light” won the international competition in 1999 as the new song for Scotland.

William was a founding member and creative tour de force of Ossian in 1976, which became one of Scotland’s best-loved traditional bands. The band, whose music influenced a generation of musicians, extensively toured the U.S. and Europe. Besides harp, he also plays tinwhistle and bouzouki.

Gráinne and William Jackson teamed up and began touring as “The Masters of the Celtic Harp” in 2005 and have been traveling together ever since. They live now outside of Claremorris in County Mayo.

 Admission: $20 adults, $18 seniors, $15 SMD members, $10 students. For more information call Joanie at (304) 263-2531 or email updf@earthlink.net.

 

END OF MARCH BLOG

Hang on to your Heart…

February is bringing some great happenings from SMaD… Be in the the know… join the new Mail Chimp SMaD email list at: http://eepurl.com/bG_Q8X

Ron Buchanan calls lively contra and square dances to the fine music of the Contrarians, a contra dance band from West Virginia. Featured are Paul Epstein on fiddle, John Longwell on mandolin, saxophone and banjo, Andy Park on guitar and Will Carter on bass. at the Shepherdstown War Memorial Building. Beginners workshop at 7:30PM, dance starts at 8PM. All levels welcome, no partners needed. Please wear clean, soft-soled shoes to protect the floor. Fabulous potluck snacks at the break. Admission is $12 adults, $8 SMD members, $5 dancers under 12 years old.

On Valentines Day, we bring you a concert with the Irish Supergroup Runa, sure to win the heart of the one you love… timed perfectly to be followed with a nice dinner on the town!

Runa
Sunday, February 14, 4:00pm
Shepherd University, Reynolds Hall

Quickly gaining recognition as one of Irish music’s new “super-groups”, RUNA has been enchanting audiences by pushing the boundaries of Irish folk music, since their formation in 2008.  Interweaving the haunting melodies and exuberant tunes of Ireland and Scotland with the lush harmonies and intoxicating rhythms of bluegrass, flamenco, blues, jazz, they offer a thrilling and redefining take on traditional music.

The group has been honoured internationally, winning Top Group and Top Traditional Group in the Irish Music Awards and an Independent Music Award for Best World/Traditional Song.
 
“Timeless and flawless…”Jim Allford, PA Music Scene

Seeking to preserve and continue a traditional culture in a modern age, RUNA creates the backbone of its signature roots sound from the musical and geographical diversity of its individually established band members.  Their strive for excellence and creativity blazes a trail for the future of folk music, earning them the reputation as one of the most innovative Irish folk groups of this generation.

Best of all, RUNA sounds like no one else.” – Travis Rogers, Jr., Music Life and Times

Members of RUNA have played with Solas, Riverdance, Slide, Clannad, Fiddlers’ Bid, Moya Brennan, Eileen Ivers, Hazel O’Conner, Keith & Kristyn Getty, Barcó, Téada, Jonathan Edwards, and the Guy Mendilow Band.

RUNA consists of vocalist and step-dancer, Shannon Lambert-Ryan of Philadelphia, Dublin-born guitarist, Fionán de Barra, Cheryl Prashker of Canada on percussion, Dave Curley of Galway on mandolin, vocals, bodhrán, and step-dancing, and Maggie Estes of Kentucky on the fiddle.

Receiving lavish praise on both sides of the Atlantic, RUNA recently released their fourth album, “Current Affairs”, a cross-pollination of RUNA’s signature roots sound with the overtones of Appalachia and Americana.  Hailed by Marcene Bronson, (The Celtic Crier) as “an incredible masterpiece”, “Current Affairs” has been nominated in the 2014 Irish Music Awards for “Best New Irish CD” and in the 2015 Independent Music Awards for “Best Bluegrass Song” (Ain’t No Grave) and Best World/Traditional Song (False Knight Upon the Road).
Tickets: Advance tickets are $20 adults, $18 seniors, $15 SMD members, $10 students and $25 adults, $22 seniors and $20 members at the door.. Advance tickets on sale at O’Hurley’s General Store, or by mail. For more information call Joanie at (304) 263-2531 or email updf@earthlink.net.

Drive the Cold Winter Away

Tis the season!!  Be up to date: Sign up for our email list here!

Wednesday, December 23: Renaissance Christmas Concert at St. Peters Lutheran Church 8pm.

Tina Chancey (longtime director) of HESPERUS joins with Niccolo Seligmann and Brian Kay from DIVISIO, a Baltimore-based group mixing Early music and Early magic designed to drive the cold winter away.
DIVISIO’s musical influences cut a broad swath – from Spain, Italy, Greece, to Turkey, Kyrgyzstan, and Northern Africa. Grounded in these living traditions, Divisio sends roots into cultures long gone and wide branches into cultures still in development. Together the three musicians play more than a dozen early and traditional instruments from oud to viol and kamenj to tar,combined in a program that will energize and delight you.
At St. Peter’s Lutheran Church at 110 N. King St. in Shepherdstown, WV. Admission is $22 adults, $20 seniors and $18 members and $10 for students. For more information call Joanie at (304) 263-2531 or email updf@earthlink.net.

Saturday, January 2: January Contra Dance at 8PM
Come out for a wonderful post-new year’s dance with Will Mentor calling to the Stringrays, with extraordinary New England fiddler, Rodney Miller, along with guitar and mandolin player, Max Newman who is also busy with his feet!, and the incredible Stuart Kenny on bass and banjo.  It promises to bring great delight!  Beginner’s workshop at 7:30, dance starts at 8pm.  Potluck snacks at the break.

Fiddle Retreat Fun!

Fiddle Summit: Friday, January 8 at 8pm
This annual concert presents some of the finest fiddlers from a variety of traditions with some extraordinary accompaniment. Featured artists include national Scottish fiddle champion Emerald Rae, Pascal Gemme, the driving force behind the French Canadian supergroup Genticorum, David Kaynor, known for his solid New England style and graceful Scandinavian fiddling, bluegrass and old-time fiddler and mandolinist Danny Kniceley, 6-time WV fiddle champion, Jake Krack, Ken Kolodner on dulcimer and fiddle, the fine flair of English country dance music from Peter Barnes (piano, flute) and Mary Lea and Paul Oorts. 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. At the Shepherdstown Presbyterian Church. Admission is $20 adults, $18 seniors, $15 SMD members, $10 students.
Tickets will be available at the door.
For more information call Joanie at (304) 263-2531 or email updf@earthlink.net.
Fiddle Retreat Contra Dance: Saturday, January 9
David Kaynor calls to the immense “wall of sound” from the Fiddle Retreat Open Band led by David Kaynor, Pascal Gemme, Mary Lea, Peter Barnes and more. *No beginner’s workshop.
All levels welcome, no partners needed. Please wear clean, soft-soled shoes to protect the floor. Potluck snacks at the break. Admission is $12 adults, $8 SMD members, $5 dancers under 12 years old.

Squeeze the Bag!
Saturday, January 16, 8pm
Four kinds of bagpipes will be featured in this showcase concert, including the tiny Northumbrian pipes of England with Ian Lawther, the uilleann pipes, performed by, Cillian Valleley, joined together with flutist Kevin Crawford, and fiddler, Colin Farrell who form the heart of the supergroup Lunasa. The Scottish section of the concert will feature pipers Mike MacNintch, Nick Hudson, and EJ Jones along with his accompanist, bouzouki player Frances Cunningham all 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. Admission: $20 adults, $18 seniors, $15 SMD members, $10 students. For more information call Joanie at (304) 263-2531 or email updf@earthlink.net.EJ Jones with others from an earlier Squeeze the Bag… this year’s program with provide lots of variety!

End of the Holiday Post…. earlier posts below!

December Events

ATTENTION! We have just started a new media rich email list on Mail Chimp.  This will soon replace our old list. To add yourself to this list, please go here.

Saturday, December 5: Annual Holiday Potluck and December Contra Dance

Join us for our annual holiday potluck dinner, for all of our members and friends who love traditional music and dance.  This community gathering is a chance to gather together with old friends and meet new ones and share a meal of everyone’s favorite potluck dishes.  No need to stay for the dance, but we hope you will.  The potluck starts at 6pm… bring a favorite dish to share.

Dugan Murphy calls lively contra dances to the fine music of Blackjack Grove, with Bethany Waickman on guitar, Glen Loper on mandolin and Julie Metcalf on fiddle at the Shepherdstown War Memorial Building. Beginners workshop at 7:30PM, dance starts at 8PM. All levels welcome, no partners needed. Please wear clean, soft-soled shoes to protect the floor. Potluck snacks at the break. Admission is $12 adults, $8 SMD members, $5 dancers under 12 years old. For information contact Becky at (304) 870-4118 or see the web page at http://www.smad.us .
Wednesday, December 23: Renaissance Christmas Concert
 at St. Peters Lutheran Church 8pm.

Tina Chancey (longtime director) of HESPERUS joins with Niccolo Seligmann and Brian Kay from DIVISIO, a Baltimore-based group mixing Early music and Early magic designed to drive the cold winter away.
DIVISIO’s musical influences cut a broad swath – from Spain, Italy, Greece, to Turkey, Kyrgyzstan, and Northern Africa. Grounded in these living traditions, Divisio sends roots into cultures long gone and wide branches into cultures still in development. Together the three musicians play more than a dozen early and traditional instruments from oud to viol and kamenj to tar,combined in a program that will energize and delight you.
At St. Peter’s Lutheran Church at 110 N. King St. in Shepherdstown, WV. Admission is $22 adults, $20 seniors and $18 members and $10 for students. For more information call Joanie at (304) 263-2531 or email updf@earthlink.net.

Coming up in January… musicians won’t want to miss the Early bird deadlines for Registration to get the best rates!  Look for details of the concerts and dances on our concerts web page and on on mid-December blog.
Upper Potomac Fiddle Retreat *
Friday, January 8-Sunday, January 10
Join some of our finest local fiddlers and special guests for a weekend featuring over 30 different workshops for fiddle, hammered dulcimer, mandolin, piano, and mixed instruments, and dance band classes in a variety of styles in historic Shepherdstown, WV, on the campus of Shepherd University. Weekend’s staff includes: Emerald Rae (Scottish, English), Mary Lea ( English), Pascal Gemme (French Canadian), David Kaynor (New England), Alan Jabbour ( Appalachian), Danny Knicely (bluegrass, swing, and old-time mandolin and fiddle), Peter Barnes (Dance Band, piano), Ken Kolodner (hammered dulcimer accompaniment) and Paul Oorts (mandolin and mixed-instrument band classes). Friday night features a showcase concert; Saturday night has a contra dance with the weekend’s open band led by our instructors as well as jam sessions nearby. For information see http://upperpotomacmusic.info/fiddleretreat or call Joanie Blanton (304) 263-2531 or email upperpotomac@gmail.com . Early bird registrants (before December 1) get a substantial discount on tuition fees.
Upper Potomac Pipers Weekend *
Friday, January 15 -Sunday, January 17
Weekend retreat featuring classes, individual tutoring, concert and sessions for a wide variety of bellows-blown bagpipes, percussion, flute and mixed instruments. Staff are: Cillian Valleley (uilleann pipes), Kevin Crawford (Irish flute), Colin Farrell (Irish fiddle), Ian Lawther (Northumbrian smallpipes), Mike MacNintch, EJ Jones, and Nick Hudson (Scottish smallpipes and borderpipes), Frances Cunningham (bouzouki) and our host piper Bob Mitchell (Scottish smallpipes & border pipes). All classes are held in the relaxed retreat atmosphere of the Shepherd University campus center and the surrounding historic buildings. For more information see the webpage at http://upperpotomacmusic.info/squeezethebag/ , call Joanie Blanton (304) 263-2531 or email upperpotomac@gmail.com . Early Bird registration by Dec 15 offers a substantial discount on tuition! Rental smallpipes and practice bouzoukis (restrung baritone ukes) are available for the weekend for a small additional fee for those just starting out.

End of Dec 2015 post……….

Fall update… October and November

We start off October with a lively contradance that will feel like a party!

On Saturday, October 3, Eva Murray will call a lively selection of contras to the Baltimore-based band Wombat Crossing, with Carl Friedman on fiddle, Robin Wilson on flute and Charlie Pilzer on piano and accordion.  Eva’s clear directions will have even the newest beginners dancing every dance!  A beginner’s workshop will be held at 7:30, the dance starts at 8pm.  Potluck snacks at the break, please wear clean soft-soled shoes to protect our lovely wooden floor at the Shepherdstown War Memorial Building.

Our dance prices have risen…  it now costs $10 general admission, $7 for members… dancers under 12yrs old $5.  Our annual membership is only $15/yr for a single or $25/family.  Join this season and save while attending our wide selection of concerts and dances.

Our concert with Gerdan, originally scheduled for Friday, October 2 has been moved to November 13.  Andrei and Solomeia were required for a last minute booking with the Maryland Symphony at Strathmore Hall.

Our November dance, on Saturday, November 7, features the calling of Sargon de Jesus to the music of Divine Comedy with Steve Hickman on fiddle, John Divine on guitar, and Marty Taylor on whistles and concertina. Same time, place and details as October…

And last, but certainly not least… the best way to spend Friday the 13th… with music from Transyvania and Ukraine with Gerdan!
Friday, November 13, 2015 we feature a concert with the band Gerdan at 8pm at the St Peters Lutheran Church
Gerdan2
Gerdan ensemble is named after a multi-colored, intricately woven beaded necklace from Carpathian Mountains in Ukraine. Like this dazzling and exquisite necklace, musicians bring alive rich arrangements that reflect their passion for tradition Eastern European folk melodies and rhythms. Inspired by their native roots and heritage, they create and perform their own special blend of world music that brings together the old with the new, in a style that is fresh, lively, and beautiful.

The Gerdan concert features traditional songs and folk melodies from Ukrainian, Slovak, Czech, Gypsy sources that are rich in history, and complexity. Bringing together a duo of folk and classically trained musicians consisting of flute master, Andrei Pidkivka who plays a vast assortment of folk flutes from the region, violinist Solomia Gorokhivska and special guest Richard Miller , this concert will bring to life music of the Ukraine!