RI Fiddle Project
Rhode Island Fiddle Project began in 2009, as a free program for students and their families in Pawtucket & Central Falls, Rhode Island, offering instruments, lessons, and workshops in fiddle and dance traditions, and concerts by Fiddlers-in-Residence. RI Fiddle Project was incubated and inspired by Community MusicWorks, and hosted at Woodlawn Community Center. Highlights for students over the years included meeting the Carolina Chocolate Drops, playing with Cedric Watson, workshops with April Verch, Jay Ungar and Molly Mason.
Funders have included the Carter Family Charitable Trust, Sparkplug Foundation, Jubilation Foundation through the Tides Foundation, D'Addario Foundation, Rhode Island State Council on the Arts, City of Pawtucket, Grey Fox Educational Fund, Hungry for Music Foundation, and many generous individual donors.
So, what's happening now?
A number of elements of RI Fiddle Project continue on:
- One student who has been with Fiddle Project since 2010, has been awarded repeat RISCA Apprenticeship grants in 2015-2017 to work with Master fiddler Michelle Kaminsky to continue her work on the instrument.
- Individual donors have made it possible for a small group of RI Fiddle Project students who have continued in the program into their teenage years, to continue to develop their skills as musicians and leaders through weekly sessions.
- Rachel Panitch & Michelle Kaminsky continue to use the pedagogy & curriculum they developed together at RI Fiddle Project to bring the Fiddle Project experience into new organizations & schools through short & long-term residencies. If you're interested in bringing Fiddle Project's work to your organization, please use the Contact page to get in touch.
New in 2017: Xylophone Workshops
A new workshop offering from RI Fiddle Project for senior living centers in collaboration with schools.
Michelle and Rachel offer these improvisation workshops as a 1-time event and in a 3-5 part series. The workshops enable participants to experience the joy of creating their own original music on an instrument without any previous experience.
"Giving our residents an opportunity to engage with children through mutual play on the xylophones was not only a great deal of fun, but it also provided an avenue for musical expression and allowed for meaningful interaction between generations." - Senior Center Staff Member