World Fiddle Day 2016

2016 WORLD FIDDLE DAY Toronto : May 21, Fort York 

2016 – yet another warm and beautiful day, and filled with the sounds of many many fiddlers playing their way around the world. The day started with workshops in the morning, a short concert with our wonderful guest artists, and then on to the fiddle jam with our fabulous house band! 300 people played and heard fiddle tunes from around the world!

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10:00 a.m. Workshops with guest artists  (see bios below)
Dan MacDonald, Cape Breton Fiddle
Mark Marcyk, Hutsul Fiddling from Ukraine
Rosalyn Dennett,  Appalachian Fiddle
Yosvani Castaneda, Latin Violin: Grooves and Improv.

12:30 – 2:00 Concert with guest artists, including Finale piece written especially for World Fiddle Day 2016

2:15 – 5:30 Around the World Jam with House Band: Tom Leighton, piano; David Woodhead, bass; Ed Hanley, percussion; Martin Van De Ven, Clarinet; led by Anne Lederman: fiddle and Lea Kirstien: fiddle in 3 sizes. (see bios below)

MEANWHILE, our practice sessions are well under way, but there is always room for more.  Check the Around-the-World Jams page for a schedule.

Artists Bios

Dan MacDonald Cape Breton Fiddler
Dan MacDonald
Dan is from a family of musicians from the small village of Ironville, Cape Breton and began playing fiddle at a very early age. His fiddle education came mostly from his father, Lloyd MacDonald, and from the surrounding musical culture of Cape Breton Island. In the late 1980s, MacDonald, and his family formed Scumalash, a traditional Cape Breton band, with whom he toured throughout the United Kingdom between 1988 and 1992, culminating in the release of a self-titled album. Scumalash recently returned from a reunion tour of England. Dan moved to Toronto in 2003, where he became a co-host at the Irish music session at Dora Keogh Irish pub and later became a member of the traditional Irish group, Spraoi who have performed at the Tranzac Club, Hugh’s Room and the Brampton Folk Festival. In 2006, MacDonald became music director of The Magic of Ireland, an Irish dance and music show, with which he toured the UK, Canada, the USA and Europe. An active freelance performer and teacher, MacDonald currently plays with North Atlantic Drift, with Brian Tahaney and Ross Grifithes, whom he has released two CDs

Mark Marcyk
Mark Marczyk: 
Mark is leader, violinist and singer for the Lemon Bucket Orkestra, hailed as “Canada’s only Balkan-klezmer-gypsy-party-punk-super-band.” With Lemon Bucket, Mark has been nominated for several awards and has performed at international festivals across the globe. Just over a year ago, Mark and other Lemon Bucket members went to the eastern front of the war in Ukraine, using their music as catharsis, support, and a platform for storytelling and information, a journey that resulted in Counting Sheep, an interactive video-music-theatre-dinner-play that tells the story of the Maidan Revolution through traditional central and eastern Ukrainian choral songs. They have just released their 3rd album, Moorka, of re-worked folk songs the band learned in Romania, Ukraine, Serbia, and Macedonia on their last European tour, each spiked with a unique blend of funk, punk, psychadelia, blues and swing. Mark will give a special workshop in hutsul fiddling, from the Carpathian highlands of Ukraine.

Rosalyn Dennett
Rosalyn is a violinist and singer/songwriter who performs solo, as a side musician, as a member of the all-female Roots quartet Oh My Darling, and of duo Dennett & de Groot with banjoist Allison de Groot. Oh My Darling has been nominated for a Western Canadian Music Award for Best Roots Album for both “Oh My Darling” and “Sweet Nostalgia,” and has opened for Tegan & Sarah and Blue Rodeo. Rosalyn has performed at such events as Canada Day at Trafalgar Square in London (UK), the Winnipeg Folk Festival, the Tønder Festival (Denmark) and the Living Room in New York City. Rosalyn will do a workshop on Appalachian fiddling.

Yosvani_smYosvani CastanedaOriginally from Cuba, Yosvani was classically trained at the Amadeo Roldan Conservatory in Havana, As a teenager, he toured throughout Canada, Europe, Japan and South America as both a solo artist and member of the popular Cuban band “Bamboleo.” Yosvani returned to Canada as an adult in 2008, and has since performed at venues and events such as The Toronto Beaches Jazz Festival, Harbourfront, Lula Lounge, Nathan Phillips Square and the Pan-Am Games. He is especially known for his ability to bring together urban and classical sounds with his Cuban/Latin roots. He will offer a workshop on Latin-American violin.

House Band bios

Anne Lederman (Bandleader, Violin, Arranger)
Anne Lederman is a fiddler, singer, multi-instrumentalist composer, song-writer and story-teller known for her work with Canadian and World traditions, especially Aboriginal Fiddling, Celtic-Canadian fiddling, Klezmer and African musics. She performs solo and has worked with bands Muddy York, The Flying Bulgar Klezmer Band, Siyakha, LOKA, Njacko Backo and Eh?! among others and has been featured on over 50 recordings in addition to 5 of her own. Anne has also developed her own published method for teaching Canadian Folk Fiddle that she uses at the Royal Conservatory of Music, at York University, in private lessons and at camps and workshops nationally and internationally. Anne is the founding Artistic Director of Worlds of Music Toronto and World Fiddle Day Toronto.

leahLea Kirstein (Violin/Viola/Cello/Bass) Lea holds a Bachelor of Music from the University of Victoria, where she studied classical chamber and orchestral performance with the Lafayette String Quartet and Janos Sandor. As a performer, she has collaborated on albums with Juno nominees Oliver Schroer and Teresa Doyle, and performed with the Berklee-based Folk Arts Quartet. She showcases her diverse range of playing styles in several new music groups in Toronto: Euphonia Chamber Orchestra, Sneak Peek Orchestra, soul-pop band REENIE, the Leaside Celtic Quartet and as a freelance artist in the Toronto music scene. She continues to advocate for high-quality, creative string pedagogy through her teaching positions as an elementary school strings teacher in Toronto, a private teacher at the Toronto Institute for the Enjoyment of Music, and at fiddle camps and festivals across Canada. 

Martin Van de Ven (clarinet)
Martin van de Ven has spent most of his professional career as a freelance musician.  A mainstay of the Canadian klezmer scene, Martin performs with Canada’s hottest klezmer band Beyond the Pale currently in the process of completing a new CD. A unique stylist, Martin van de Ven brings fire, elegance and humour to his performances with the award-winning group. He is a frequent performer and instructor at klezmer music festivals around the world. He has published two instructional volumes of klezmer transcriptions and has composed and performed music for film, television, theatre, and dance productions. This year he got Ontario Arts funding to complete a multi movement Cantata based on Arts research done my Jumblies theatre on the relationship of people, past and present, with the land in Toronto.  He is a fulltime music, arts and math instructor at OASIS Alternative School.  He is a firm believer in arts education –for children and adults alike– as a way to a healthy, well rounded and fulfilling life.

TomTom Leighton (Piano/Accordion) A multi instrumentalist (piano, accordion, accordion bass, bouzouki, bodhran, whistles, jaw harps, mandolin and trombone), Tom brings to his music sophisticated colours and novel arrangements. As half of celebrated duo Haines & Leighton, he has made 3 CDs,Foot to Floor,” “Optimists Jig and “Hand to Hand” with Borealis Records, and has toured nationally and internationally. Tom recently released his first solo CD “Leighton Tendencies”, featuring his own compositions and arrangements and has played on many prominent recordings with other artists including Ron Hynes, The Irish Descendants, Danny Bakan, Ron Nigrini, Nancy White, Jed Marum, Marie Lynn Hammond, Michael Cavan Kelly, Georgette Fry and Anne Lederman. Tom has co-written two musicals, “Ship of Fire,” produced by the Festival Players of Prince Edward County in 2009 and “Minerva” (with Suzanne Pasternak). He has orchestrated works performed by the Kingston Symphony and has been music director for the Riverdale Share Concert for the past 6 years. 

edEd Hanley (percussion) Described as “a remarkable player, both in his musical thoughtfulness and his technical virtuosity” (Halifax Chronicle Herald), Ed’s is best known as a practitioner of tabla (the classical percussion of North India). From the Stockholm Jazz Festival and the Jaipur Heritage Festival, to Massey Hall in Toronto and Joe’s Pub in NYC, Ed Hanley has been a featured performer at prominent music festivals and concert halls in Europe, India, the USA, and across Canada. As co-artistic director of the Canadian world music ensemble Autorickshaw, Ed has earned two Juno Award nominations, as well as the Grand Prize in the World Music category of the John Lennon Songwriting Competition. Ed has been featured on stage and in the studio with a diverse range of artists, from Loreena McKennitt and the Penderecki String Quartet to Peggy Baker and Trichy Sankaran. His work can be heard on soundtracks for Deepa Mehta (Funny Boy for CBC Radio) and Jonathan Goldsmith (the feature film, Such a Long Journey), as well as in the Art Gallery of Ontario’s exhibition, Maharaja: The Splendour of India’s Royal Courts.

DWDavid Woodhead (Fretless electric bass) Best known for his melodic and personal style on the fretless electric bass, David Woodhead has explored much musical territory on his own and with other notable travellers. His creative instrumental work has appeared on over 200 albums in the contemporary folk field, and he has worked with countless artists including Perth County Conspiracy and it’s many branches, Garnet and Stan Rogers, Scott Merritt, Don Ross, Oliver Schroer, Loreena McKennitt, Gil Scott-Heron and Valdy. Always busy on the studio, concert, and festival scene, David has recently been gigging with his own Confabulation band as well as Malagasy guitarist Donne Roberts (African Guitar Summit), and has done tours of the UK and Australia with James Keelaghan plus stints with Nordic classical-folk fusion band Ensemble Polaris and veteran nine-piece jazz ensemble Manteca. He frequently appears at Toronto’s Hugh’s Room and is familiar to audiences at practically every contemporary folk venue and festival in Canada.