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Karen Ashbrook

Karen Ashbrook

is the author of "Playing the Hammered Dulcimer in the Irish Tradition" and is a popular teacher and performer at dulcimer festivals around the country. Karen plays Celtic, Belgian and French music with her husband, Paul Oorts. She has numerous recordings including her 2006 release, "Spring Will Come".

Nick Blanton


Nick Blanton

is a highly respected dulcimer builder. He plays a varied repertoire, but is best known for his subtle renditions of early music and high spirited French dances featured on his recording, "Pas d'Été" and in his book of French Renaissance Dances published by Mel Bay.


Christie Burns

Christie Burns

first attended our festival as a high school student a dozen years ago and her infectious enthusiasm and love of music has brought her full circle to become a popular performer and teacher here. She has degrees in ethnomusicology and folklore, founded the Cork Dulcimer Festival and has taught and performed at festivals and camps both here and abroad. Her music can be heard on her recording with Butch Ross, "Here to Play".

Ken Kolodner


Ken Kolodner

has toured extensively solo, with the high energy trio Helicon performing instrumental music from around the world, and with fiddlers, Laura Risk and Elke Baker. In addition to teaching at many festivals, Ken's credits include an Emmy nomination, many highly acclaimed recordings on the Dorian label with total sales over 100,000 CDs. Ken just released a new recording of old-time fiddle repertoire.


Paul Oorts

Paul Oorts

a native of Belgium, is adept at musette accordion and many things with strings. His instrumental versatility and knowledge of many different styles of music has made Paul the accompanist of choice for many hammered dulcimer players and dance bands. He plays in duo with his wife, Karen Ashbrook, in Ensemble Tympanon, he directs the group Carillon, and plays in various dance bands of traditional and vintage music.

Dulcemelos

Dulcemelos

are a duo comprised of Alejandra Barrientos and Héctor Larios from Querétaro, Mexico who are working to keep alive the hammered dulcimer (salterio) repertoire in Mexico. Their diverse repertoire includes Mexican folk pieces, European baroque music, salon and chamber music from the 18th Century and more recent compositions for plucked dulcimer and piano.