The Backstep in Cape Breton Step Dance - Mats Melin
Description: Dr Mats Melin, an ethnochoreologist at the University of Limerick who researches Cape Breton step dance, explains how to execute the basic back step.
One Fiddle Tune, Four Basslines - David McGuinness
Description: Dr David McGuiness, University of Glasgow, describes four different basslines written between 1761 and 1790 for the same Scottish tune, ‘Invercauld's Reel’ (aka ‘Invercauld's Rant’).
Shetland Bridal Tunes - Blyde Lasses (Claire White & Frances Wilkins)
Description: Fiddle music has historically played an important part in Shetland weddings. It is thought that there were once marches in every island district which were used to accompany various aspects of the celebrations, from leading wedding parties to church, to seeing the bride into bed on her wedding night. There are a number of extant stories about particular bridal tunes and their associated traditions which are both intriguing and amusing.
Today, fiddle music still features prominently in Shetland nuptials. It is often performed at wedding ceremonies and dances, and some couples still uphold the bridal marching tradition. Tunes are frequently composed as wedding gifts, and are occasionally written with outdoor performance in mind.
Cape Breton Piano Accompaniment - Chris McDonald & Kimberley Fraser
Description: Chris McDonald
(Cape Breton University) and Kimberley Fraser
(Cape Breton fiddler, dancer and pianist) explain how the Cape Breton piano accompaniment style works.
Tracing the Chop - Laura Risk
Description: Musicologist and fiddler Laura Risk explains how she investigated the origins of a percussive fiddle technique known as ‘the chop’, invented in 1966 but now common throughout North Atlantic fiddle traditions.
Scottish Fiddle Manuscripts in Australia - Emma Nixon
Description: Fiddler and scholar Emma Nixon describes two Australian manuscripts of historical significance: one is a strathspey and reel tune combination, and the other is a letter describing James Scott Skinner's playing style.
James Bay Cree Fiddling - Frances Wilkins
Description: Dr Frances Wilkins, ethnomusicologist at the University of Aberdeen, describes the historical connections between James Bay Cree and Scottish fiddling.
Shetland Songwriting - Claire White
Description: Singer Claire White explains how Shetland's history inspires her songwriting, telling the disastrous story of the ship known as the Brattholm and the sole survivor of its destruction.
Folk Meets Baroque - Ronnie Gibson
Description: A comparison of historical and contemporary performance practices of 18th century Scottish fiddle repertoire.
Comparing Old Time Ontario & Ottawa Valley Steps - Sherry Johnson & April Verch
Description: Sherry Johnson and April Verch compare and contrast steps in the Ontario Old-Time and Ottawa Valley stepdancing traditions.
The Bodhran: Celtic Music’s Newest Instrument - Fintan Vallely and Gino Lipari
Description: Fintan Vallely describes the history of the bodhran as an instrument in Irish traditional music, and Gino Lipari describes its construction and basic technique.
Ornamenting a slow air on Irish flute - Fintan Vallely
Description: Respected Irish flutist Fintan Vallely explains and demonstrates a wide range of ornaments that can be played to increase the emotional intensity of a slow air.
Resilience & the Music Industry - Leah O’Brien Bernini
Description: Dr Leah O'Brien Bernini, ethnomusicologist, describes the characteristics that make traditional musicians resilient in the face of change, contributing to their success.