Alasdair Fraser and Natalie Haas were the main act. I saw them both about five years ago - just after they started playing together. I enjoyed this performance far more. Natalie Haas has really settled into the style and plays her cello with ringing strings, and great rhythms. The tune of the Festival seemed to be The Farley Bridge written by Duncan Chisholm with at least three bands playing it - great tune.
I took the opportunity to attend some of the workshops on offer. Its a good way to learn both some technique and tunes. On Saturday I went to Duncan's Chisholm's workshop on slow air playing. He had five "secrets". Cross over bowing, pressure on the bow, sliding, vibrato, third position and grace notes. He was great teacher and we played the beautiful tune "Lullaby to Gael".
I also went to Catriona MacDonald's workshop and learned more about Shetland bowing. Difficult very old tune. Vamm (Catriona MacDonald's new band) are playing it.
Alasdair Fraser's workshop was also interesting with work on rythymns.
I also went to Anna Wendy Stevenson's class on harmony and Meg Henderson's on Sunday. Finally I also went to a talk on hardanger tunings (there are about 40)!.
I only saw some of what was on over the weekend. There was lots more which I would have loved to see but couldn't be in two places at once!. It was great weekend - two days of playing, listening and learning. Didn't get to bed until after 2 am. Roll on next year!
Join the Fiddle Festival as a member if you are interested. Here's a link.