The Strawberry Hill Fiddlers are classically-trained string players from high schools in Dutchess County, New York.
Directed by Emily and Carole Schaad, the group evolved several years ago from a Suzuki-style program in Rhinebeck. The group draws developing talent from the day camp called Summer Strings, which was created in 1997 by Carole, Emily and Jonathan Handman in Poughkeepsie to bring together students from all backgrounds, both to experience orchestral music and to learn traditional fiddle music by ear.
The Fiddlers meet weekly in Hyde Park to learn and rehearse a diverse repertoire of fiddle tunes from many cultures around the world. They experiment with harmonies, improvisation and arrangements, and they also develop their skills in private workshops with renowned guest artists such as Jay Ungar, Bruce Molsky and Darol Anger.
Past performances include the Grey Fox Bluegrass Festival, the annual Dance Flurry in Saratoga Springs, and annual conventions of the New York State School Music Association and the Music Educators National Conference. They have also appeared twice as the opening act for Barrage, the Irish-Canadian fiddle troupe that tours worldwide.
Committed to community service, they perform frequently for church groups, nursing homes and in benefit concerts. They have recently performed as one of just four groups invited to the annual convention of the American String Teachers Association in Kansas City.