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Please join us at our next CFS Gathering on Friday, January 11th, when we celebrate young musicians and dancers carrying forward the musical traditions we treasure. The 12th Annual Young Talent Showcase gets underway at 7:30 PM in the Great Aunt Stella Center, 926 Elizabeth Avenue, in the edge of downtown Charlotte. Doors open at 7 PM.
Refreshments are served in the Café downstairs after the concert. A song circle, jam sessions (including a slow old-time jam), and the Charlotte Appalachian Dulcimer Club meeting follow. The Dulcimer Club makes available loaner instruments to visitors interested in "taking a test drive." Both listeners and participants are welcome to all these activities.
Emcees for this concert are CFS Junior Board members, David Fee and Isabelle Young.
We are pleased to shine a spotlight on Joshua Gerrard, our 2012 Marilyn Meacham Price Youth Scholarship winner, who attended the Swannanoa Gathering Fiddle Week as a scholarship recipient last summer. Joshua is a fourteen-year-old freshman at Northwest School of the Arts. He plays violin in the advanced chamber orchestra at his school, and has been playing viola for three years in the Charlotte Symphony Junior Youth Orchestra. He has taken private Suzuki/classical violin lessons with Sarah Slechta since age six and began fiddle lessons with Glen Alexander about eighteen months ago. When he's not making music, Joshua enjoys reading, longboarding, and playing with his dogs. Sheryl and David Gerrard are Joshua's parents.
Kate Aberman, a sophomore at Myers Park High School, is making her third appearance in the Young Talent Showcase. She has been taking fiddle lessons from Jon Singleton since 2009 and is learning tunes from a variety of traditions. Kate is also learning guitar from her brother Alex. She has performed as an actress on several stages. Kate recently got her black belt in Tae Kwon Do and placed second in sparring in her age group in the North Caroina AAU Open Championship. Her parents are Linda MacDonald and Mickey Aberman.
James Barkley, a returning Young Talent Showcase performer, is in the sixth grade at Trinity Episcopal School. He is also involved in Boy Scouts, basketball, and loves to read. This is his fourth year of taking instruction in acoustic guitar and fiddle from Jon Singleton. James' parents are Andrea and John Barkley.
Annika Bowers is fourteen years old and is currently homeschooling and taking classes at CPCC and Queens University with the hope of attending conservatory in the future. Annika first picked up a violin in her strings program at Metrolina Regional Scholars' Academy in the third grade. In sixth grade she auditioned and was accepted into the Charlotte Symphony Junior Youth Orchestra. This year Annika is Principal of second violins in the Charlotte Symphony Youth Orchestra (the senior division of the Charlotte Symphony's two youth orchestras). Annika's classical violin teachers are Ms Violet Pan and Professor David Russell at UNCC. Annika has been playing Celtic fiddling music for several years and studies with Jamie Laval. She also tries to keep her viola playing going with various chamber music opportunities. In April 2013 she hopes to participate in a regional competition of the U.S. Scottish Fiddling competition sponsored by F.I.R.E. (Scottish Fiddling Revival Ltd.). Annika loves painting, drawing, writing and watching British TV shows whenever possible. Her parents are Beau and Cheryl Drake Bowers.
Nora Duncan is a fourteen-year-old fiddler studying with Jon Singleton. Nora was fortunate to begin her playing with Andrea Moore studying the Suzuki Method. She has attended Swannanoa Gathering workshops with Brian Conway and Liz Knowles. Nora also plays trumpet in the Trinity Episcopal School band where she attends. Nora has been known to beat a drum or two and is likely to fashion an instrument out of scrap material found lying around about anywhere. Nora is the daughter of Thom and Nancy Duncan.
Davy Fee is fifteen years old and is a sophomore at Rocky River High School. He has been playing guitar for five years and is mostly self-taught. Davy's biggest influence on the guitar is Django Reinhardt. He also enjoys jamming on the bass around the Folk Society, where he is a junior Board member. Last summer he attended the Swannanoa Gathering Guitar Week as a 2011 Marilyn Meacham Price Youth Scholarship winner. Davy's other hobbies include track and outdoorsmanship. Davy is the son of David and Tracy Fee.
Marie Larson Hasty is a senior at Myers Park High School. She loves visual arts, singing, surfing, hamboarding, hanging out with friends, and visiting retirement homes. She is saving money for a gap year to work and travel before college. Her current favorite artists include The Avett Brothers, John Mayer, Sara Bareilles, Jack Johnson, Mat Kearney, and many more. Marie and her dad are producing a CD of their songs which they plan to release this spring. She'd like to thank her family and friends for being awesome! Marie will be accompanied by her dad on guitar. Mark Larson and Cathy Hasty are Marie's parents.
Glenn O'Neal is fifteen years old and attends Grace Academy. He has been playing fiddle for five-and-one-half years and he takes lessons with Jon Singleton. Glenn enjoys a variety of music, from folk to contemporary Christian, from pop to classical. As well as music, Glenn enjoys basketball and fishing. This is the fourth year he's taken part in our Young Talent Showcase. Glenn has performed in the MerleFest Youth Showcase and on the CFS Stage at Festival in the Park. His parents are Claire and Skip O'Neal.
Sixteen-year-old Lando Pieroni was born in Florence, Italy. Last year, he and his family moved from Tuscany to Charlotte. He is a junior in the International Baccalaureate program at Myers Park High School. Lando has studied classical guitar for five years and has won numerous musical competitions in Italy. In 2012, Lando was honored to have been chosen as a recipient of the Tosco Music Party Scholarship to the Swannanoa Gathering. Lando is an avid basketball player and volunteers at Presbyterian Hospital. He is the son of Carol Wilson and Carlo Pieroni.
Returning Showcase performer Sam Richardson, age fourteen, has been playing the violin since kindergarten. He attended the Swannanoa Gathering in 2009 when he received a youth scholarship from Warren Wilson College and was runner-up in 2012 for the CFS Marilyn Meacham Price Youth Scholarship. A highlight from this past summer was playing with Harry Taylor on stage at the Knight Theater for a luncheon concert honoring Arts & Science Council donors. He also enjoyed playing on the Folk Society Stage during Festival in the Park with his favorite sidemen, Harry Taylor and Ray Owens. He is an eighth grader at Alexander Graham Middle School and takes fiddle lessons with Glen Alexander. Laurie and Dillard Richardson are Sam's parents.
Now ten years old, Ruth Shumway marks her seventh year as a violinist and her fifth appearance in the Charlotte Folk Society's Youth Showcase. She studies both classical violin and old time/bluegrass fiddle with Mrs. Judy Meister and Mr. Glen Alexander respectively. Ruth and her band, The High Ridge Pickers, enjoy performing at a variety of venues including fiddlers' conventions, farmers' markets, retirement communities, and school functions. Currently, Ruth is a fourth grader at Charlotte Latin School. In addition to music, Ruth enjoys Tae Kwon Do, swimming, and having fun with her friends. She is the daughter of Mary and David Shumway.
Nicholas "Nick" Tutwiler is ten and in the fifth grade at Beverly Woods Elementary School. He has been fiddling for about a year and a half and takes lessons with Carol Raedy. He enjoys playing Civil War era folk music and is an aspiring re-enactor. Nick enjoys attending CFS monthly Gatherings and participates in slow jams afterwards, usually, with his older brother Ryan, a past Youth Showcase performer who plays the hammered dulcimer. Nick often attends workshops in the region to refine his technique. He became interested in playing the violin because he felt left out of the jam sessions that Ryan played in! Nick also participates in the Sharon Presbyterian Church hand bell choir and is working on playing the penny whistle. He is looking forward to moving up to middle school in the fall and appreciates the support of his parents in his musical endeavors. Nick's parents are John and Heather Tutwiler.
Isabelle Young, our 2009 Marilyn Meacham Price Youth Scholarship recipient and a CFS Junior Board member, has performed many times on CFS Stages - both in Youth Showcases and at Festival in the Park. Isabelle, the daughter of Ellie and Rick Young, is a seventeen-year-old Celtic fiddler who attends Union County Early College. She hopes to pursue a career in music education at the Berklee College of Music in Boston. Her resume includes the Union Symphony Youth Orchestra, Charlotte's Singing Christmas Tree, and performing for the 2012 Elevation Church Christmas service. She also plays with a Celtic ensemble. Isabelle takes fiddle lessons with Josh Green and works as a llama farm manager to pay for lessons. Isabelle will be accompanied on guitar by Garrett Fuchs. He is a junior at Piedmont High School in Union County, where he plays baritone and trombone in the band. As well, Garrett is a pianist and he also plays bass guitar for Secondmile, a Christian band.
This year we have three groups making their Charlotte Folk Society debuts - The Jones Sisters Bluegrass Band, the Charlotte Scottish Country Dance Society Youth, and Jack's Jills.
Tori, Katie, and Elli Jones live in Linwood, North Carolina and are schooled at the Oak Tree Academy. They perform together as the bluegrass band The Jones Sisters. Tori is fourteen and began studying classical violin at the age of five. She currently takes fiddle lessons from Glen Alexander. Tori is an accomplished bluegrass musician and enjoys attending summer fiddler's conventions. She plays mandolin and guitar as well as the fiddle, her primary instrument. Katie began taking classical harp lessons when she was five and continues to take lessons in Statesville. In addition to the harp, she enjoys playing the bass fiddle with her sisters when they compete at fiddle festivals. Katie is the group's spokesperson and always has a smile to share. Elli plays guitar and is the band's lead singer. Tori, Katie, and Elli take lessons as a group and individually from Ron Hatley in Stanfield. Michael and Jodi Jones are the parents of Tori, Katie, and Elli.
The Charlotte Scottish Country Dance Society's Youth (Abigail Moore, Alex South, Abraham Jacques, Bascha Jacques, Daniel Wolff, Ginger-Gabrielle South, Ian Walsh, Jonathan Wolff, Laurel Johnson, and Olivia Johnson) have been dancing together under the instruction of Jack Pressley and the advisement of Ric Pierce for over a year. They recently participated in the first ever Royal Scottish Country Dance Society's Medal Testing administered outside the United Kingdom in the Northern Hemisphere. The Medal Testing is an assessment program whose purpose is to encourage young people to learn Scottish Country Dancing and to assure high standards of dance steps and methods. All ten young people were awarded medals with distinction. Additionally, the group performs regularly at local events.
The quartet Jack's Jills met in their Scottish Country Dance class, where they discovered another love they have in common: music. Under advisement of Jack Pressley, their dance instructor, Jack's Jills sing harmony and fiddle in conjunction with their dance team at local functions. Recent performances were at the Marion Diehl Senior Center, the Reel Scottish Weekend at the British American School, and at Historic Rural Hill's First Footin' on New Year's Day. All four are homeschooled. Abigail Moore (soprano) is fourteen. She has sung with the CHEA Choir for the past nine years and has been a piano student for the past five years (VanPatter Music Studio). Abigail loves singing, theatre, Scottish Country Dancing, and playing the piano. Laurel Johnson (alto), age fifteen, is in the ninth grade. As a member of the Choir School at St. Peters since 2006, she has performed with the children's chorus in the operas Turandot and La Boheme and is now in the Mastersingers Choir. Laurel also plays the violin and serves as an assistant music and theory instructor for the Hand in Hand Orchestra at St. Luke UMC. In addition to music, she loves math, science and Scottish Country Dancing. Olivia Johnson (soprano) is thirteen and an 8th grade student who plays the violin and is a member of the Touring Choir at The Choir School of St. Peters since 2007. Olivia serves as an assistant music and theory instructor for the Hand in Hand Orchestra at St. Luke UMC. She loves Scottish Country Dancing and literature, particularly classic works by Austin, Alcott, and Bronte. Ginger-Gabrielle South, the fiddler, is fourteen. Starting at age five, she was instructed by Ernie Manack of the Tosco Music Studio in Suzuki violin for a year and a half. Self-taught ever since, she enjoys playing bluegrass, folk, and Scottish music. Ginger likes learning music by ear. She also enjoys playing the piano.
We are most appreciative of all the parents who support their children's interest in music and the teachers who develop that interest. Please come out and help us encourage these young musicians with your presence!
CFS Gatherings are made possible, in part, with funding from the Arts & Science Council and the North Carolina Arts Council, an agency of the Department of Cultural Resources, and the National Endowment for the Arts, which believes that a great nation deserves great art.