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Members of the Valley Youth Fiddlers, who will be performing the Fiddlers History of Canada
NEWS RELEASE · 7th June 2012
Valley Youth Fiddlers
The Fiddle History of Canada will make its Terrace debut Friday June 15 at the REM Lee Theatre.

Last year, the Valley Youth Fiddlers presented the hugely successful show “A Fiddler’s History of Canada—Part 1”, telling the history of how the first fiddles came to Canada, brought by immigrants from many different countries, and how the music travelled with the fur trade and was adopted by First Nations people. This year’s eagerly-awaited show presents Part 2, profiling Canada's fiddle music "superstars" from the past 100 years.

Tirion Grice, a performer in the Fiddler’s History, said that she learned a lot during the nine months it took to put the show together. “I was one of those people who wasn’t very familiar with Canada’s history, and this was a brilliant way to learn it—with friends, music, and culture”.

“This has been an amazing experience” said performer Kiri Daust. “We’ve all had so much fun with this project—making great music with friends, and learning history”.

With tunes from every region of Canada, Part 2 of “A Fiddler’s History of Canada” tells stories about how radio and TV influenced fiddle music when Maritime icon Don Messer went on the air, how an Inuit man sold his sealskin jacket in order to play fiddle music in the Arctic, and how fiddle music in BC took on a life of its own with brilliant and inventive fiddlers like Daniel Lapp. There are crooked tunes from Québec, cowboy songs from Alberta and music inspired by immigrants from Eastern Europe. No matter where in Canada you’re from, come and find out how your culture has played a role in the evolution of our fiddle music!

The Valley Youth Fiddlers, under the musical direction of Leslie-Jean MacMillan, began performing in 1997. Since then, a whole generation of young people has passed through its ranks, playing at local events as well as across the province. The group consists of 30 young fiddlers, accompanied by family and community members. They play an eclectic range of tunes and their performances are always energetic and fun.

The Fiddle History of Canada has been a work in progress for many years. It was created specifically for the ensemble by the renowned fiddler Gordon Stobbe, who has mentored them for the past 10 years. Stobbe lives in Nova Scotia, has played in many bands, is an avid composer, and is very much in demand as a teacher and performer.

Stobbe, who arranged the many and varied tunes that make up the show said, “This is a unique project because it brings together the many different types of music and culture that characterize our vast country.”

Friday’s performance will include Parts 1 and 2 of the Fiddle History of Canada. The show will also be performed in Smithers the night after, and during a provincial tour in early July with stops in Barkerville, Sechelt and Victoria.

This event was made possible through the financial assistance of the Province of British Columbia’s Community Gaming Grant.

The Fiddle History of Canada will be presented in Terrace at the REM Lee Theatre, on Friday June 15, at 7:30pm. Tickets are available at Misty River Books and at the door. Tickets are $12, or free for 5 and under. Come and join the fun!