World-class Scottish traditional musicians and teachers, Alasdair Fraser & Natalie Haas, host this inspirational weekend of traditional and contemporary Scottish music for intermediate and advanced string players. You’ll learn a mega-medley of great tunes with a focus on melodic expression, ornamentation, and how to achieve a rhythmic groove. Emerald Rae and Donal Sheets will offer supportive coaching and breakout sessions. You’ll delve into the heart and soul of Scottish music and have a ton of fun making music with friendly people.
“Everything was excellent: the site, food, staff, faculty, schedule, other participants!”
“I loved the music, the energy… the desserts!”
“Alasdair, Natalie, Emerald, Donal, Jay & Molly – what lovely warm people. I loved that they created an open and soulful environment for us.”
The weekend culminates with an exciting public concert Sunday at 3pm featuring the staff and an all-camp performance of the music you’ve learned. The concert is also live-streamed for those unable to join us on site.
The above prices cover meals and tuition. Lodging options vary in price and may be selected during registration. Camping is free.
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May 14, 2023
A lively concert of Scottish fiddle & cello music with renowned performers Alasdair Fraser, Natalie Haas, Emerald Rae, Donal Sheets, Jay Ungar & Molly Mason. 3pm in the performance hall.
2022 Scottish String Fling Camp Coordinators
ALASDAIR FRASER 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.
NATALIE HAAS 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.
Hailing from the historic fishing community of Gloucester, Massachusetts, Emerald Rae is a small-town girl steeped in cherished folk traditions and a cutting edge fiddler, singer and dancer. She enjoys finding ways to transform the fiddle into anything from bagpipes to flamenco or electric guitar, slap bass or ukulele. Though best known as a performer, Emerald thoroughly enjoys sharing her skills and talents through teaching and coaching, as part of the Scottish String Fling support team with Donal Sheets.
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.
This protocol meets or exceeds current CDC and NY State Department of Health guidelines and is subject to revision based on changing conditions and changes in those guidelines. We’ll notify registered campers if there are any significant changes before camp begins. We trust our caring community to find the right balance of caution and fun within these parameters, to make safe decisions, and to treat fellow campers with respect.
Everyone is required to test negative for COVID-19 in the 24 hours before arrival.
If you test positive, do not attend.
If you have COVID symptoms, do not attend regardless of test results.
If you come in close contact with someone COVID positive within 6 days of the start of the event, do not attend regardless of your test results.
If you’ve recently recovered from COVID and have been symptom free for 5 or more days without the use of fever-reducers, you may attend.
All refund requests due to COVID exposure, or COVID-related concerns will be honored.
Longhouse bunk rooms will be capped at 1/2 occupancy.
Overall camp attendance will be limited to provide ample space for distancing.
The Ashokan Center will provide onsite rapid testing upon request or as needed.
Anyone who tests positive or develops symptoms consistent with COVID will be asked to leave the event and will be entitled to a refund.
Masks are recommended while gathering indoors (except when eating or performing.) N-95 masks can be provided on request.
Whole room exhaust fans in the Performance Hall & Dining Hall will draw a constant stream of fresh air.
Daily cleaning includes disinfectant for all door handles, tables, and any frequently touched surfaces.
You may pay in full or hold your place with a deposit of $200 per person. If making a deposit, full payment is due 4 weeks before camp begins. If you register within 4 weeks of camp full payment is required.
To cancel your camp registration, email firstname.lastname@example.org
• We retain $50 per person for cancellations requested up to 4 weeks before camp begins, and for COVID-related cancellations made at any date.
• We retain $200 per person between 4 and 2 weeks before camp.
• We retain the full registration amount within 2 weeks of camp.
You may choose to pay up front or pay a deposit and balance. Balance payment is due 4 weeks before the event.
Registration includes all activities and meals. Lodging is optional and camping is free.
Children under 5 attend for free. Campers under 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.
All meals are included. You may indicate your dietary restrictions when registering. We make every effort to include a range of allergen-free dishes and to inform diners of meal ingredients.
The Ashokan Center is licensed to serve beer and wine in Esopus Lodge (the main building). The bar is generally open from late afternoon to early evening. Sorry, by law, guests are prohibited from bringing their own alcoholic beverages into this licensed building.
LONGHOUSE BUNKS: Rooms hold up to 12 people (50% capacity) and are designated women, men, or all gender. Place your belongings on a top or bottom bunk after you check in to claim it. Pillows are available, please bring your own blankets, sheets, pillowcases, and towels. There are a small number of light blankets for those bunkhouse residents who are unable to bring one of their own. If you will need us to provide one, please let us know well in advance.
PRIVATE ROOMS: There are a limited number of private rooms that must be reserved in advance at extra charge. Pillows are available, please bring your own sheets, pillowcases, and towels. There are light quilts in each private room.
CAMPSITES: Camping is available with access to bathrooms and outdoor showers. Please park by your campsite only if you plan to leave your car in place for the duration of the camp.
If you’re lodging with us please remember to bring a blanket and linens (or sleeping bag), towel, toiletries, soap, flashlight, earplugs (for light sleepers). There are light quilts in each private room and we have a small number of light blankets for bunkhouse residents who can’t bring one of their own. Let us know well in advance if you’ll need one.
Flashlight, recording device, camera (or maybe those are all your phone!)
Comfortable informal clothing for wet and dry weather. Some may also bring dressy, wild or fun clothing as well but that is up to you! There’s no laundry on site so bring enough clothes for the camp.
Please, no pets or drop-in guests.
Your Name c/o Ashokan Music & Dance
477 Beaverkill Rd,
Olivebridge, NY 12461
Outgoing mail leaves each weekday at 4pm.
Music & Dance Camp Phone (845) 657-8333 x 3
Cell phone reception is available but spotty. Calls may be dropped but texts are reliably received.
High speed Wi-Fi is available in all buildings.
Ashokan Center, 477 Beaverkill Rd, Olivebridge, NY 12461
Take NY State Thruway (1-87) to Kingston exit #19.
From traffic circle take Route 28 West (toward Pine Hill).
In 12 miles (shortly after Mobil & Citgo) turn left onto Reservoir Rd.
Cross the Ashokan Reservoir, turn left at the Tee.
Head down the hill, pass the first left (Rt 28A East) and merge onto 28A West.
Take next left onto Beaverkill Rd.
Follow Beaverkill for about one mile, then turn right into the Ashokan Center driveway and follow the signs.
AIRPORT Albany, NY (ALB) is the closest major airport (about 1.5 hours away). Public transportation is available from the airport to the Kingston bus station, where you can take a taxi to Ashokan. Or contact us at least one month before your program begins for a list of people driving from the Albany area who may be able to give you a ride.
If there are no camp spots or private rooms available above, you may add your name to this waitlist. If space opens up we will contact you.
The Ashokan Center builds community through shared experiences in nature, history, music and art. We have hosted traditional Music & Dance Camps at our 385 acre nature preserve for over 40 years. In 2020 we learned how to host them online and in 2021 we began to reimagine how to gather in person once again.
Come join the Ashokan family to celebrate, learn, connect, deepen your music, make new friends, and brighten your day. Our events are open to all folks, all ages and all orientations.