The Jana Jae Fiddle Camp and Music Fest held over the Labor Day weekend has grown to attract a national following with participants from distant states such as Colorado and California represented as well as closer Missouri, Texas, Arkansas, Kansas and others.
World Champion fiddler and Texas Fiddle Hall of Fame member Jim Chancellor, known as “Texas Shorty” was lauded by all as he performed and added new interest and ideas to the workshop sessions this year. Jana Jae commented, “When musicians of note and the mandolins, fiddles, and guitars are joined by 5 cellos, 2 doublebasses, a clarinet, a flute, a keyboard, as well as a classical and jazz guitarist, the options for interesting performances multiply! This was the most enjoyable year yet, and the most successful, judging from the number who came to participate and to listen. We are fortunate to have a beautiful location for this reunion of acoustic musicians to enjoy. A full moon on Grand Lake was our backdrop Friday and Saturday evenings at Snider’s Camp, and the Grove Civic Center provided a wonderful place for small and large group classes and daytime performances. Everyone wants to come back next year!”
The Fiddle Camp takes place every year during Labor Day weekend,.and is the third and final Festival of the year 2009 Grand Lake Festivals, Inc. series. Many have been attending this camp since the Fiddle Camp began in 1995 and more friends take part each year.
Spectators enjoyed watching participants learn difficult bowing & fingering techniques, different styles of music, as well as learning to play with groups, bands and in contests. Before the weekend ended every participants found they could play on stage before an audience.
Throughout the weekend, Jana Jae and 20 other instructors spent time with each participant helping them with their individual problems or questions.
Sometimes the best music happens in the jam sessions, and a favorite for all is the Sunday morning Gospel jam with inspirational singing and playing of requested numbers.
On Saturday evening the audience was entertained by Bluegrass Friends, Texas Shorty, Jana Jae and Friends, and talent by all who participated in the Amateur Fiddle Contest.
2009 winners in the six divisions of the contest were:
OPEN DIVISION: 1st, Jacob Duncan, Jenks, Oklahoma; 2nd, Douglas Thompson, Rose, OK; 3rd, Michael Thompson, Rose, OK; 4th, Evan Alexander, Jenks, Oklahoma.
PEE WEE DIVISION: 1st, Kayla Cao, Tulsa, Oklahoma; 2nd, Lilly DeChow, Broken Arrow, OK; 3rd, Sara Jane Castle, Tulsa, OK; 4th, Ryan Yumang, Springdale, Arkansas.
JR. JR. DIVISION: 1st, Jordan Flippo, Claremore, OK; 2nd, Regina Scott, Tulsa, OK; 3rd, Edith Sigler, Joplin, MO.
JUNIOR DIVISION: 1st, River Lee, Springdale, AR; 2nd, Brett Dudenhoeffer, MO; 3rd, Corbin Brown, Marshfield, MO.
ADULT DIVISION: 1st,Will Bush, Springdale, AR; 2nd, Gary Sizemore; 3rd Todd Robertson, Grove, OK.
SENIOR DIVISION: 1st, John Allred, Groesbeck, TX; 2nd, Celia Wallace, Bella Vista, AR; 3rd, Kate Dahlmann, Siloam Springs, Arkansas.
Over 130 participants and accompanists attended the 15th annual fiddle camp with 21 instructors on hand to teach the various groups. Workshops in addition to fiddle included cello, back-up guitar, mandolin, spoons, and fiddle harmonies. This event was hosted by the non-profit organization, Grand Lake Festivals, Inc. with the assistance of the Oklahoma Arts Council and the National Endowment for the Arts. A special thank you goes to the many local and area sponsors, media, staff, and the many volunteers that make these events possible.