Indiana University

Skip to:

  1. Search
  2. Breadcrumb Navigation
  3. Content
  4. Browse by Topic
  5. Services & Resources
  6. Additional Resources
  7. Multimedia News

Media Contacts

Sondra Welton
Indiana State Fair

Erin Roth
Traditional Arts Indiana

Last modified: Thursday, June 12, 2003

Calling all fiddlers to Traditional Arts Indiana State Fair Fiddle Contest

EDITORS: For further assistance, contact George Vlahakis in IU Media Relations at 812-855-0846 or

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Traditional Arts Indiana, a partnership of Indiana University Bloomington's Department of Folklore and Ethnomusicology and the Indiana Arts Commission, is now accepting entries for the first Traditional Arts Indiana State Fair Fiddle Contest.

The competition featuring some of Indiana's finest fiddlers will take place Aug. 9 on the WFMS Free Stage at the Indiana State Fair.

"This state has a fabulous heritage of traditional fiddling, string band and bluegrass music. Indiana has always been a congenial home for this music and these musicians," said John McDowell, professor and chair of the Department of Folklore and Ethnomusicology. "Traditional fiddling is one of the forms of artistic expression that has deep roots in the lifeways of this region, and I'm delighted that Traditional Arts Indiana is sponsoring this important event."

Contest organizers hope to showcase Indiana's many fiddle styles, from bluegrass and old-time to "Texas-style." Contestants will be judged by a panel of three accomplished fiddlers who respect the wide range of performance styles. Together, they have nearly 100 years of performing experience.

Contestants will be judged based on rhythm, bowing technique, intonation, phrasing and creativity. There will be two categories: Beginners (less than five years of experience) and Open Division. Three prizes will be awarded for the beginners, starting at $75, and seven prizes for the Open Division, starting at $300. Contestants will be asked to perform a hoedown, a waltz and a tune of their choice.

To register or for more information, contact Sondra Welton at the Indiana State Fair at 317-927-7524.

Since 1998, Traditional Arts Indiana has been dedicated to expanding public awareness and promotion of Indiana's traditional arts and artists. It also is co-sponsoring a Bluegrass Extravaganza on June 28 at 7 p.m. at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater in Bloomington. In partnership with the theater and Bloomington Parks and Recreation, it will present an evening of bluegrass, gospel and country favorites. Indiana performers will include Lawrence County's New Frontier, Franklin County's Chestnut Mountain Boys and Bartholomew County's Banister Family. For more information, visit or call 812-323-3020.