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The countdown to Fiddle Frenzy, Shetland Arts’ annual celebration of the Shetland fiddle tradition, is underway with only 3 weeks to go. All tickets are now on sale - for both full week and day packages of workshops, the 7 evening concerts that place across the week, and a special lecture event discussing the Shetland fiddle tradition.

Now in it’s 12 year, Fiddle Frenzy takes place 2-9 August attracting up to 100 students from across the world. This year is the final year in which the festival will be curated by sisters Jenna and Bethany Reid.  The sisters have now come to the end of their three year term, and their final festival promises to be a frenetic treat of fiddle, guitar, traditional music and fun.

Eight Shetland fiddlers will lead the fiddle classes - Claire White, Gemma Donald, Eunice Henderson, Jenny Keldie, Cathy Geldard, Alan Gifford, Kirsten Hendry and Andrew Gifford, divided into advanced, intermediate and improver levels. With over 80 students already registered for fiddle classes, space in these is now very limited. One guitar accompaniment class is also on offer, and organisers can now confirm the line up of tutors who will divide the week between them - 3 leading lights in traditional folk guitar - Kris Drever (Lau), Brian Cromarty (Saltfishforty/The Chair) and Anna Massie (Blazin’ Fiddles). Creative Fringe classes offering a range of art options, aimed at family & friends visiting Shetland with musicians but open to everyone, will again be taught by Amy Fisher & Ana Arnett.

Every night at Fiddle Frenzy sees an evening concert, followed either by sessions at the Festival Club, or a dance. Always popular, the concerts are open to anyone, and give members of the public a chance to taste the Frenzy experience.

The opening concert on Sun 2nd will take place at Mareel headlined by local traditional music stars Bryan Gear & Violet Tulloch. On Mon 3rd August, Gemma Donald will perform as well alongside visiting artists Angus Lyon & Ruaridh Campbell. On Tuesday the 4th the Frenzy moves to Aith Hall, with a concert featuring Kris Drever & Friends, and Andrew Gifford. The concert will be followed by a session in the Rankin Lounge. Wed 5th is back to Mareel for the ‘Shetland Sets’ night which showcasing a range of local traditional groups. This will include recently formed trio of young fiddlers ‘Clinkin’ Fiddles’. Thu 6th will see well know Orcadian duo Saltfishforty headline at Mareel, before the festival takes over Yell on the 7th at Cullivoe Hall with a concert featuring Jenny Keldie & Brian Cromarty followed by a dance with Da Fustra. The final concert on Sat 8th at Mareel will be headlined by Anna Massie & Mairearad Green.

A special lecture event will also take place on Saturday 8th August, hosted by Claire White and will include a panel of local fiddlers who will share their playing, composing and instrument-making insights in an informal question and answer session. Guests include father and daughter fiddlers Henry and Eunice Henderson, and instrument maker Ewen Thomson. With such a range of activities and talent on show, the event is not to be missed.

Tickets for all events, including the evening concerts, are now sale at Shetland Box Office. View the full programme at:  http://issuu.com/shetlandarts/docs/ff2015-programme

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