Amanda Hayden

Amanda HaydenFiddle music in the public schools

(Dr. Rebecca Gerber, Advisor)

Traditionally, fiddle music is taught by rote, meaning without any written music to read. As a trained violinist, playing by rote is often an unfamiliar skill.  This project begins by researching fiddling styles and creating an extra-curricular public school program using the basics of this musical genre. Through recordings, concerts, lessons, festivals and camps, a better knowledge of fiddle music and its origins in teaching has broadened my interests in violin styles.

I've had several experiences teaching fiddle tunes to string students by rote, and I am preparing to write a method book on how to train public-school string teachers to incorporate this genre of music in a traditional way. Bruce Molsky, a professional fiddle, banjo, and guitar player who specializes in old time music, will contribute to this project with workshops and a concert in April 2009 at the Crane School of Music. He has inspired me to learn and teach fiddling and maintain its authenticity. Through this project I hope to expose string students of all ages to another style of music that has influenced my musical experiences.