Contemporary Folk Week continues its expanded lineup this year, welcoming back folk legend Tom Paxton, our first Master Music Maker, country star Kathy Mattea, Grammy-winners Jon Vezner and Don Henry, folk stalwarts Ellis Paul, Vance Gilbert, Cliff Eberhardt and Amy Speace, and vocal coaches Siobhan Quinn and Camela Widad. This year, we also welcome new staff members John Gorka and Nora Jane Struthers. Creative dynamo Joe Craven, a long-time stalwart of Fiddle Week and one of our Master Music Makers, makes his first appearance in Contemporary Folk Week, and we also welcome back Peter Mulvey to this year’s staff.
Drawing on tradition and innovation, our instructors bring a world of practical and imaginative experience to help you create and perform the music that makes your heart sing. Whether you’re trying out material at a local ‘open mike’, a performer with some experience, a working musician looking for some help in reaching your next goal, or someone who would simply like to feel more confident pulling that guitar out in front of others, we’re here to help, and our foundations are support, fun, and community. Our top-notch staff, knowledgeable in the various aspects of both the art and business of contemporary acoustic music, can help you achieve your goals. In addition, our limited enrollment and small campus encourage community-building at its best – frequent and informal interaction between students and staff, all doing our utmost to ensure that you go home energized and empowered to make the most of your music.
Choose from a wide variety of songwriting, performance, vocal and creativity classes which all stress supportive interaction among staff and students and individual attention to students’ needs. Each day’s schedule will address both artistic and commercial questions and concerns, while also providing time for sharing music on an informal basis, and social activities will include open mikes, concerts, song circles, special events, and spontaneous music-making.
Contemporary Folk Week runs concurrently with Guitar Week using the same schedule, so it’s easy to take classes in either program. Please note, however, that the Contemporary Folk Week open mikes are open only to those who have declared themselves to be Contemporary Folk Week students and are taking at least two classes in the Contemporary Folk Week program.