Many Thanks for Danny O’Connell Award

I have many people to thank for the honour given me as recipient of the 2017 Danny O’Connell Memorial Award.  First, I want to thank Mr. O’Connell and the O’Connell Family for this recognition. Second, I wish to thank the Ottawa Traditional Fiddling and Folk Art Society for their continuous support in me. And third, thank you to the musicians and residents of Almonte who have encouraged me and supported me and my music. 

This picture has Colleen O’Connell handing me my award certificate. Jim Hunter is also seen in this photo as I was fortunate to have him as accompanist for my performance at the Celtfest announcement.

The picture below is taken with Graham Crate, President of our Ottawa fiddle club. I was glad Graham was on hand Sunday. I am very grateful for my friends in the fiddle community.

By way of background on this special award. The memorial fund was established by the O’Connell Family in 2004 to provide encouragement and financial help to traditional Ottawa Valley fiddlers under 25 years of age. It is a award provided in memory of Danny and his passion for fiddle music. Recipients are nominated by three respected organizations with enduring records of interest in the tradition:  the Renfrew County Fiddlers, The Irish Society of the National Capital Region, and the Ottawa Traditional Fiddling and Folk Art Society. Traditionally, the recipient is presented with the award and does a brief performance at Almonte Celtfest, in which Danny was an avid participant.

 

Almonte Celtfest was a fun weekend!

 

This is one weekend I will not forget. I had a lot of fun performing on the Celtfest stage in my hometown of Almonte this past weekend. And I was honoured to have been selected the recipient of the 2017 Danny O’Connell Memorial Award. This award, in memory of Almonte’s own Danny, is given to a young musician who is advancing the Ottawa Valley fiddle music. It is a privilege to have been presented the award by Danny’s sister Colleen.

In receiving the award, I really enjoyed performing with my good friend Jim Hunter!

On Saturday, I also had a good time performing with Marley and Molly Mullan.

It is always a crowd pleaser when Marley kicks up her feet.

Here is The Millstone News write up on the festival. To see the full schedule of performances through the festival, click to the Celtfest website.

I’d love to perform at your next event

Alex George is available to play for public performances or your private functions.

He is both Ottawa Valley fiddler that loves the old time classics…

…and a traditional violinist who is partial to Mozart.

Through the past few years, Alex has performed at weddings, festival shows, fundraising events and at parties. He is comfortable performing solo, or with an accompanist, or as back-up in a band.

To book your old time fiddle or classical violin music with Alex, please call Lisa George at 613-256-0506 or you can e-mail Alex directly at alexander.fiddle@gmail.com.

 

Fiddling the time away

I have just completed my grade 11 year at Canterbury High School and I had a great school year. But where has the time gone?! It’s been a whole eight months since I was jamming with the Duxburys.

To recap on the various performances and jam sessions I played at over this period of time, I have assembled this collection of photos. From being Concert Master for my grade at a Canterbury Music Night orchestra performance, to having fun with Marley and Molly Mullan at a St. Patrick’s Day gig in the legendary Gavin’s Hotel in Quyon – it’s been a lot of fun.

It was an honour to perform at the wedding ceremony of my friends Stephanie and Johannes – and where I got to play at the reception with Almonte’s Ragged Flowers.

 

Likewise, I was honoured to fill in for Ron Caron, whose fiddling puppet contributed to a special Christmas fundraiser for Almonte’s Puppets Up Festival.

  

Performing with Ellen Katic at a Robbie Burns evening of traditional music and dance.

St Patrick’s Day – Gavin Hotel in Quyon Quebec.

I had a wonderful visit in St. Catharines with good friend and inspiration Wally Nash.

Pictured here at May 2017 Canterbury Music Night… the traditional bow of the Concert Master… and playing with my seat mate Marley Mullan.

  

Recently I performed at a couple of City of Ottawa’s Canada 150 community events – and it was fun to see the people get up to dance!

Looking for a fiddler – or a violinist?

img_0120-2Alex George is available to play for public performances or private functions. He has performed at weddings, festival shows, fundraising events and at parties. He is comfortable performing solo, or with an accompanist or back-up in a band.

To book your old time fiddle or classical violin music with Alex, please call Lisa George at 613-256-0506 or you can e-mail Alex directly at alexander.fiddle@gmail.com.

Fun at the Duxbury’s barn dance

img_0667-2

Last night I was very fortunate to be invited to Lynn and Tom Duxbury’s annual barn dance party!

img_0664

Here I had the pleasure of playing some great sets for square dances, line dances, waltzing, etc.

img_0668-2

I really enjoyed playing a few reel sets with Don Fletcher on fiddle and Tom on the guitar.

img_0672-3

I’d like to thank them for a lot of fun!

 

Summer is going by too fast

July_fiddle04b

It’s been a great summer so far (except I can’t believe it is half over)!  Our family has already gone to visit my grandmother, aunt and uncles, and cousins in Nova Scotia and we spent a week at a cottage where I did a lot of kayaking. We have also been to Toronto and Niagara to see family and friends. I have really liked my time fishing and have also biked and canoed this summer. And for the last week of the summer, my family is meeting up with my Godfather to have fun at a cottage in the 1000 Islands!

I have also enjoyed playing my fiddle through the last couple of months. I finished my school year performing with both intermediate and senior ensembles and with the orchestra for Canterbury Music Nights. In July, I had fun playing a benefit set for Diabetes Ottawa with Marley and Molly Mullan at the Ottawa Market Irish pub Mother McGinty’s (photo above).  A week later I was performing at the Greely Country Music  Festival – fiddling crowd favourites Pat’s Country, Tennessee Waltz, and Cajun Fiddle among other traditional and Ottawa Valley tunes.

Still to come this summer: I am very honoured to be playing both classical and traditional fiddle music at a friend’s wedding reception. Later in August I am looking forward to attending the Canadian Grand Masters’ Music Camp. Finally, on Labour Day Weekend, I will be competing at the Pembroke Fiddle Competition.

But, honestly, this summer is going by far too fast – before I must return to my Grade 11 year at Canterbury High School.

Here is a great picture of me with my Grandmother and brother at a family gathering at Shortt’s Lake, Nova Scotia.

July_NS_m03

 

Ottawa Fiddle Competition

Though not as prepared as I have been in past years, I entered the Ottawa Fiddle Competition in Richmond this weekend in the 18-and-under fiddle and twin fiddle categories. I enjoyed myself through the competition and did well to place second in both of my performances. With the twin fiddle, I have Marley Mullan to thank because she convinced me at the very last minute to enter the category. We have been playing a lot together, at school and at performances – so we are familiar with each other’s playing.

Here are some photos – my performance both Saturday and Sunday nights, and Marley and I performing in the twin fiddle finals on Sunday night.

IMG_9778 (2) IMG_9803

IMG_9808  IMG_9816

I will now be looking at some other competitions later this summer and, likely, Marley and I will take the time to develop our numbers and to again try our hand in the twin fiddle category.