In the 90's I started the first online Uilleann pipes discussion forum and began to experiment with many aspects of reed and pipe making. I was adamant about the need and ability of pipes to play more easily than many North Americans believed possible in those days.
I created the first home-buildable chanter, now widely known as the 'Penny-Chanter, and found or developed a number of innovations for reed making. These include the oboe makers' floatation test for predicting cane properties and my own method for building traditional reeds in a stable played-in condition. Presently I'm developing my own traditional pipes, and trying to revive some features of the better antique instruments.
Patrick Hutchinson was born in Canada but grew up in Liverpool where he had his first lessons on the tin whistle. A student of the well-loved Toronto piper and teacher Chris Langan, he has been playing the uilleann pipes for nineteen years. With Paul Cranford and David Papazian, he compiled and edited Move Your Fingers: The Life and Music of Chris Langan, published by Paul Cranford Publications in Cape Breton.
Patrick is well known for his unique settings and his penchant for unusual tunes, as well as his compulsion for variations. He has recorded with Tip Splinter, Loreena McKennit, Oliver Schroer, The Revels, and The Barra MacNeills. He holds a Doctorate in ethnomusicology from Brown University in Providence where he is a sound recordings librarian and visiting professor of music. Patrick and his wife, Charlotte Taylor, and son, Benedict, live near Providence, gardening and collecting books.
email: Patrick Hutchinson@brown.edu
Born in Boston, Benedict grew up listening to recordings of Irish traditional music sent over by his mother's family in Dublin. He took up the pipes in his twenties and has listened to and learned from a wide range of the older players, citing as particularly strong influences the stately musical tradition of East Galway and the complex and elegant piping style exemplified by the "gentlemen pipers" Seamus Ennis and Liam O'Flynn. These influences are evident in Benedict's graceful, lyrical style of playing.
Well known as an insightful and generous teacher, Benedict will be teaching beginning and intermediate piping workshops. He and his wife, harper/button accordionist Hilari Farrington, will also play in the Saturday evening public concert.
Benedict and Hilari live in East Montpelier, Vermont where Benedict, in association with David Quinn, makes and restores uilleann pipes and continues to enhance his reputation as a superb reed maker.
Willie is a renowned Irish fiddler who was born in the Bronx and raised in northern New Jersey. He was inspired to play Irish music after hearing his Irish-born father and grandfather playing the fiddle at home. In his teenage years, he studied under the highly acclaimed West-Limerick fiddler and teacher Martin Mulvihill.
Willie is recognized as a master in the art of Irish fiddling and has performed for the Smithsonian in Washington D.C. and several other folk arts programs in the U.S. and Canada. He teaches fiddle classes at his home in Northern New Jersey and at Irish music summer schools in East Durham, New York, and Elkins, West Virginia. His is featured the 2001 recording entitled The Road From Ballinakill , which was rated as one of the top 10 Irish music recordings of the The Irish Echo newspaper.
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