August 8-12, 2016
The Kanack School Fiddle Camp is a fiddling day camp in Rochester, New York. We bring together outstanding teacher/performers in Celtic, Old Time and Bluegrass, Contra, Klezmer, and Rock fiddle styles for a week of learning new tunes and techniques, making friends, and collaborating. The camp is led by Alice Kanack, director of the Kanack School and master Suzuki and Improvisation teacher and by Megan Beller, an accomplished performer and Suzuki and Fiddle teacher in Baltimore, Maryland.
Our campers range from ages 6 to 20 and play violin, viola, cello, bass, piano and guitar. No experience in fiddling is necessary for camp, but prospective campers should be past “Etude” in Suzuki book 1 and/or be able to play in A, D, and G major.
Our morning camp focuses on learning fiddle tunes and developing fiddle style and technique. For players with no previous experience with fiddling the morning camp is recommended as a starting point. Sessions each morning include learning new tunes and practicing ornamentation, bowing, improvisation, style, accompanying, soloing, and tune writing in a variety of folk traditions. Each morning will include jam sessions for beginning and advanced players. The morning camp will conclude at noon on Friday with a presentation of music from the week. Family and friends are welcome to this final concert.
Our afternoon camp focuses on playing fiddle music in a band setting. There are classes in improvisation and arranging. Students are broken into small groups that work with a coach to practice fiddling, accompanying, and improvising. Each band will put together a set of fiddle tunes in an original arrangement to perform. The afternoon camp will conclude with a Friday pizza party and concert featuring all of the student bands.
Scholarships are available to students in need of financial assistance.
Morning Camp 9-12:30 $150
Afternoon Camp 1:30-5 $200
All day 9-5 $350
For more information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
or call The Kanack School at (585) 244-6910
Megan Beller, American and Klezmer Fiddle
Megan graduated from the Eastman School of Music with a BA in Violin Performance and Music Education in 2003. Megan plays American, Irish, and French Canadian fiddle tunes with her contra dance band Contranella. She also plays traditional Jewish fiddle with the Coalhouse Klezmer Band and Charm City Klezmer. Past performances include the dance stages at NEFFA and at the Turtle Hill Folk Festival, the Rochester Thanksgiving Dance Weekend and the Phylla Mae Festival. She runs the fiddle resource website fiddlestudio.com.
Alice Kanack, Improvisation
Alice Kanack is a Rochester native with degrees in Performance and Composition from the Eastman School of Music. She is an accredited Suzuki Association of Americas teacher, with training both in the US and in Japan with Dr. Shinichi Suzuki. Alice's "Creative Ability Development" series of books and recordings are currently published by Warner Bros. and are sold internationally.
Andrew VanNorstrand, Fiddle and Guitar
Andrew has earned the title of "multi-instrumentalist" along with his brother Noah, by being proficient at more than twenty different string and percussion instruments between them. In 2000 Andrew and Noah formed the Great Bear Trio with their mother Kim on piano. Great Bear since has become one of the hottest contra dance bands on the circuit and has performed for enthusiastic fans at festivals across the country. In 2004 Andrew and Noah appeared on Garrison Keillor's A Prairie Home Companion as finalists in the nationwide Talent from Twelve to Twenty contest. Their music has also been featured on NPR's Open Mic and The Thistle and Shamrock with Fiona Ritchie.
Tim Ball, Fiddle
Tim plays fiddle with Contrapasso, Tunescape, the O'Shanigans, and other fine musicians for contra and English Country dances around upstate New York and beyond. A graduate of the Ithaca College School of Music where he studied violin with Susan Waterbury, he brings training in classical music and jazz improvisation together with a love of social dancing and a great respect for the traditional music of New England, Ireland, Quebec, and the many other regions that have lent their influence to contra dance musicians everywhere.
Donal Sheets, Cello
Donal Sheets has played jazz bass and classical cello from a very young age, and has spent many years playing American and Irish folk music on cello and a variety of other instruments. The resonant chords and percussive rhythms of his cello create an indescribably vibrant soundscape, and have earned him the nickname “Liquid Thunder”. Donal also plays mandolin and whistles, and is an accomplished sound engineer, running sound and recordings in Oberlin and beyond.
Daphne Pickens, Fiddle
Daphne Pickens has studied the violin at the Kanack School of Music for approximately sixteen years, and plans to pursue a career in music education. Daphne has served as concertmaster in the Rochester Philharmonic Youth Orchestra. She won the RPYO concerto competition with the Scottish Fantasy by Bruch. She is classically trained by her mother, Alice Kanack, and was raised in a fiddling environment since the age of five. Daphne now teaches fiddle and violin at the Kanack School of Music. She is very involved in the rochester contradance community as a musician, and frequent dancer.
Michael Raitzyk, Guitar and Improvisation
Michael Raitzyk is one of the top jazz guitarists in the Baltimore-Washington area. Acclaimed for his solid rhythm chops and improvisatory imagination, Raitzyk has played with everyone from Pepper Adams and Mel Torme to Clifford Jordan and Bill Hardman.
Although he is best known for his jazz work, Raitzyk has been welcome in many different musical environments. He backed up Mary Ann Price, former vocalist with Dan Hicks & His Hot Licks and Asleep at the Wheel, when she led her own group, Sophisticated Swing. For more information visitwww.mraitzyk.com.
Casey Murray, Cello
Casey is a cellist and guitarist from Rochester, NY. She has been studying music at The Kanack School of Music for the past 14 years where she also teaches fiddle cello and mandolin. Casey travels with her bands "Food For Thought" and "Ginger Majority" playing for different fiddle and contra dance events. She also released an album "To Zamir" with Daphne Pickens and Donal Sheets in the band Food For Thought, and also appeared on Andrew and Noah VanNorstrand's soon to be released waltz album.