Natalie is a vibrant and creative cellist, a seasoned performer and recording artist, and a skilled and experienced teacher. A graduate of the Juilliard School in New York City, Natalie discovered the cello at age nine. In addition to having extensive classical music training, she is accomplished in a broad array of fiddle genres. Her musical journey found purpose when she fell in love with Celtic music at Alasdair Fraser’s Valley of the Moon Scottish Fiddling School at age 11. Inspired and encouraged by Alasdair, she began to investigate the cello’s potential for rhythmic accompaniment to fiddle tunes. Her and Fraser’s duo release, Fire & Grace, was awarded the Best Album of the Year in the Scots Trad Music Awards 2004.
Alasdair is consummate teacher and performer. Alasdair’s dynamic fiddling, engaging stage presence, and deep understanding of Scotland’s music has created an international demand for his concert performances.
Born in the county of Clackmannan, Scotland, Alasdair now lives in California and tours regularly. He has been a major force behind the resurgence of traditional Scottish fiddling in his homeland and the United States, inspiring legions of listeners and learners through his recordings, annual fiddle camps, and concerts.
Emerald brings the duo of strings and song to a new plateau with mesmerizing dexterity. Hailing from the historic fishing community of Gloucester, Massachusetts, Emerald Rae is both a small-town girl steeped in cherished folk traditions and a world-class artist breaking new ground with inventive fiddle effects. A degree in Film Scoring from Berklee College of Music in Boston gave her the freedom to cast a wide creative net, while her grit and intensity was earned during her twenty-year career as a powerhouse fiddler and dancer. Rae embarked on her first journey into songwriting and multi-instrumentalism with If Only I Could Fly [May 2013], featuring her prowess on fiddle, vocals, guitar and the crwth [an ancient Welsh fiddle, pronounced “krooth”], and took to the road from the Canadian Maritimes to Shanghai. Single and video Blackbird [April 2017], a droning, groove-heavy version of the traditional Scottish Ballad, showcases her signature ornamented vocals and robust fiddling accompanied by a laid back djembe.
Donal grew up surrounded by traditional music and dance and played jazz bass and classical cello from a very young age. He has spent many years playing American and Irish music on cello and a variety of other instruments. The resonant chords and percussive rhythms of his cello create an indescribably vibrant soundscape drawing from many different traditions. He has taught and performed at music and dance festivals throughout the United States and is a member of Gallimaufry and Cloud Ten