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Shetland Arts has announced that Kevin Henderson will take the helm as Fiddle Frenzy curator from 2019.

Kevin is a well-known face in the traditional music scene. He began playing at the age of 9, studying under renowned Shetland Fiddle tutors Trevor & Willie Hunter, and has since gone on to be one of the most in-demand fiddlers in the folk music scene. He is a founder member of folk powergroup Fiddler’s Bid, and has played in other such notable bands as Boys of the Lough and Session A9. In 2009 he co-founded the Northern Fiddlers bloc, and his critically acclaimed album Fin Da Laand Ageen’ was released in 2011.

In addition to his reputation as a great performer, Kevin is also known as a skilled teacher, having worked with several fiddle schools in Europe, and, more recently, released the DVD ‘How to Play Shetland Fiddle’. Graeme Howell, General Manager for Shetland Arts said, ‘We’re very pleased to be welcoming Kevin to the Fiddle Frenzy team for 2019. His experience as a professional musician performing on the international stage will bring a unique perspective to the festival, and we’re very much looking forward to seeing the direction he takes it in’.

Speaking about his plans, it is clear that Kevin has big ideas for the festival, including the addition of international names to the tuition mix, and the introduction of an ‘ensemble’ class, to widen the festival out to other musicians and instruments who wish to know more about the Shetland Tradition. The aim is to create a focussed an intimate festival, with a ‘family vibe’ says Henderson. ‘I want to really focus on developing that musical relationship between the players, tutors and different instruments, and to explore how the Shetland Fiddle tradition fits in with the rest of the traditional music scene elsewhere in the world. I hope it will prove to be a collaborative and inspiring experience for everyone involved.’

The news comes at it is announced that Fiddle Frenzy will take a break for 2018. Shetland Arts Marketing Manager, Lauren Doughton said ‘After 15 years of running the festival, this year seemed to be the right time for us to take a break and review how the festival runs. We’re really excited about some of the new ideas Kevin plans to bring to Fiddle Frenzy 2019, and in the meantime we’ve got something a bit different and very exciting up our sleeves for 2018 – watch this space for more news soon!’

Fiddle Frenzy 2019 will take place between 18 & 22nd July 2019. Further information will be available via the Shetland Arts website at nearer the time.

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