These are some of the institutions and teachers that made the musician I am today.
KlezKanada is a one-week summer klezmer camp in Montreal. The Big Names in Klezmer gather to teach the smaller names tunes, instrumental technique, Yiddish, and klezmer history.
Maine Fiddle Camp is an adorable fiddle camp in Montville, Maine. Go for the music, stay for the community. Despite the name, you can take lessons on mandolin, guitar, banjo, piano, accordion, whistle, and cello as well, and jam with whatever instrument you have on hand.
BIDA (Boston Intergenerational Dance Advocates) hosts contra dances, often at Porter Square, and actively connects new musicians and bands with learning opportunities. They have hired me more times than could possibly be explained by the quality of my playing.
NEFFA, the parent organization to the New England Folk Festival, has gradually enfolded me. It is the only folk festival I have ever experienced that focuses all its energy on the community at the roots of traditional music rather than the leafy performers.
Nora Teipen gave me my first private lessons. She teased my father mercilessly for eating all her pretzels.
Andrea Young introduced me to fiddling and then ran off to Nashville to play with the stars.
Andrew Driscoll introduced me to jazz violin.
Andrei Matorin made sure I knew the 3 and 7 of every chord.
Owen Marshall played accompaniment guitar with such powerful drive that I desperately envied him and anyone who got to play with him. Then he taught me how to do it.
Mia Friedman gave me a crash course in old-time and Scottish fiddle, and showed me how to drop my thumb while playing claw-hammer banjo.
Joe Kessler fixed my bowhold and freed my mind.
Marin Bunea was my Moldovan Jedi master. He taught me how to haggle for apricots and play fiddle like a gypsy.