Kirkland Performance Center presents...
Alasdair Fraser & Natalie Haas
- February 23, 8:00PM
All Seats: $25
FOLK >Traditional Folk WORLD > Celtic
Artist Sponsors: Jay & Suzy Wakefield
JUST ANNOUNCED! Keith Highlanders Pipe Band will be opening for Alasdair and Natalie! They will also be joining them for a few pieces during the show!
Master Scottish fiddler Alasdair Fraser, long regarded as one of his country’s premier musical ambassadors, presents the songs of his homeland with unsurpassed eloquence, passion and energy. In this special duo concert, he links bows with vibrant young cellist Natalie Haas in an exciting wave of rocking, reeling rhythms, poignant melodies and exquisite musicianship. This remarkable combo has created a major buzz among Celtic music lovers and has been featured on nationally broadcast radio programs, including Thistle and Shamrock and Mountain Stage.
Clackmannan-born, California-based fiddler Alasdair Fraser and his American musical partner, cellist Natalie Haas, have been investigating and reinvigorating the relationship between their instruments that flourished in former times with spectacular success over recent years.
Master Scottish fiddler Alasdair Fraser is a consummate performer. His dynamic fiddling, engaging stage presence, and deep understanding of Scotland's music have created a constant and international demand for his solo appearances and concerts with a variety of ensembles. Alasdair has been a major force behind the resurgence of traditional Scottish fiddling in his homeland and the U.S., inspiring legions of listeners and learners through his recordings, annual fiddle camps, and concerts. He has represented Scotland internationally through performances sponsored by the British Council, and has been awarded touring support by the California Arts Council, with the ranking of "highest priority for inclusion on the roster; considered 'model' in stature.
Vibrant young cellist Natalie Haas is a seasoned performer, recording artist, and teacher. She has joined master Scottish fiddler Alasdair Fraser for festival and concert appearances in Scotland, Spain, France, and throughout the U.S., including Celtic Connections Festival in Glasgow, Scotland, the Festival Interceltique de Lorient in France, and the Smithsonian Folklife Festival in Washington, D.C. "People may be familiar with the gorgeous, melodic cello sound," says Fraser, "but they're surprised to learn that the cello used to comprise the rhythm section in Scottish dance bands. Natalie Haas unleashes textures and deep, powerful rhythms that drive fiddle tunes. We can "duck and dive" around each other, swap melody and harmony lines, and improvise on each other's rhythmic riffs. She has such a great sense of exploration and excitement for the music; it's a joy to play with her!"
A graduate of the Juilliard School in New York City, Natalie discovered the cello at age nine. In addition to having extensive classical music training, she is accomplished in a broad array of fiddle genres. Her musical journey found purpose when she fell in love with Celtic music at the Valley of the Moon Scottish Fiddling School at age 11. Inspired and encouraged by director Fraser, she began to investigate the cello's potential for rhythmic accompaniment to fiddle tunes.
A California native, Natalie has also toured extensively with Mark O'Connor as a member of his Appalachia Waltz Trio. The trio released a live CD, Crossing Bridges, to rave reviews in November 2004. She and O'Connor premiered his double concerto for violin and cello, "For The Heroes," with the Grand Rapids, East Texas, and San Diego Symphonies. Natalie has also performed and recorded with fiddler Natalie MacMaster and Irish super-group Solas. She teaches privately, in a workshop setting, and at various fiddle camps.