FIDDLER’S GROVE, INC 2012
Fiddler’s Grove Ole Time Fiddler’s & Bluegrass Festival Rules
(AUTHENTIC OLD TIME MUSIC – NO ELECTRIC INSTRUMENTS)
1. HERITAGE TUNE: The tune itself must date back about 100 years. This is non-competitive. A special Rosette is given to the musician who most effectively tells the history of the tune and plays the best presentation.
2. TWIN FIDDLER’S CATEGORY: Open to all fiddlers regardless of age or style and does not conflict with band or other individual categories of competition. Twin fiddlers can have one rhythm accompaniment.
3. FIDDLER OF THE FESTIVAL: This award spotlights the focal instrument of the festival and is the highest honor a fiddler can attain. The fiddler of the festival will be chosen from the Champions of each division. The play-off will be held Saturday night at approximately 9:00 p.m. Each contestant will play three tunes: (1) Fast tune, reel, jig, or hornpipe, (2) Slow tune, waltz or schottische, (3) One tune of his/her choice. Each tune is not to exceed 3 1/2 minutes. The champion of each division and category must be present for the play-off or forfeit his/her placing, and the second place winner is eligible to advance to the play-off in that category.
4. JUNIOR BAND AGE REQUIREMENTS: The average age limit of the band members cannot exceed 17 years of age. The sum of the ages is divided by the number of members.
5. JUNIOR OLD TIME BAND: Bands must consist of a fiddle, banjo, and at least one other stringed instrument (guitar, mandolin, autoharp, dulcimer, or bass fiddle), but cannot exceed 6 members. Only one vocal number will be permitted, but not required. Tunes performed must be old time tunes played in old time style not to exceed 3 1/2 minutes per tune.
6. JUNIOR BLUEGRASS BAND: Bands must consist of at least three different string instruments, one being a fiddle, guitar or banjo, not to exceed 6 members. Only one vocal number will be permitted, but not required. No electrical instruments or drums will be permitted. Traditional tunes encouraged and time not to exceed 3 1/2 minutes per tune.
7. SENIOR OLD TIME BAND: Bands must consist of a fiddle, banjo, and at least one other stringed instrument (guitar, mandolin, autoharp, dulcimer, or bass fiddle), but cannot exceed 6 members. Tunes should be characteristic of the old time tradition and in old time style. Only one vocal number permitted, but not required. Time not to exceed 3 1/2 minutes per tune. *NOTE* Keeping with the Ole Time traditions, our old time bands perform in an intimate setting, unplugged before judges who hear it the way folks did more than 2 centuries ago.
8. SENIOR BLUEGRASS BAND: Bluegrass Bands must consist of at least three different string instruments, one being a fiddle, guitar or banjo, not to exceed 6 members. No electrical instruments or drums will be permitted. Only one vocal number permitted, but not required. Traditional tunes preferred and encouraged. Time not to exceed 3 1/2 minutes per tune.
9. The purpose of the festival is to promote, encourage and perpetuate traditional music played in old time and bluegrass style. Bands will be judged on authenticity of style, balance, tuning, and timing. The judging will also be based on the smoothness of starting and stopping tunes. Bands in both divisions should play one relatively fast and one relatively slow number. Judges usually favor traditional performance over technical performance. Attention to tunes suitable to category and style (Old Time or Bluegrass) is important.
10. A band can compete in only one division. Individuals can play in only one band. Members of the band must remain the same in preliminary and final competition. Bands must be back stage for their scheduled performance or they may forfeit their right to compete.
11. PRELIMINARY COMPETITION: There will be preliminary band competition Saturday to select finalist bands in each of the two Sr. Divisions (Bluegrass & Old Time) for competition in the play-off for championship bands Saturday night. Bluegrass and Old Time bands will play 2 tunes not to exceed 3 1/2 minutes per tune in both preliminary and final competition.
12. FINAL COMPETITION: Bands will perform two tunes, each according to above rules. Tunes played in preliminary competition must not be played in final competition by bands or individuals. Performance versatility in tune selection is what the judges will look for.
13. INDIVIDUAL CATEGORIES: An individual can compete in only one category. Contestants may play alone or have one rhythm accompaniment. Contestants will be allowed one tune not to exceed 2 1/2 minutes total playing time
Certified Old Time Fiddle: (55 years old or older) Open ONLY to traditional old time fiddlers who play by ear and have had no formal violin training.
Fiddle: There are no training restrictions. Please play proper styles in old time and bluegrass fiddle categories. (Trick tunes are not permitted), Jr.& Sr. divisions
Banjo: Scruggs’ tuners will not be in Bluegrass categories. There will be no restrictions on the use of thumb picks, two finger or drop thumb playing in old time categories, Jr. & Sr. divisions.
Harmonica: Chromatic Harmonicas will not be permitted.
Guitar: Two divisions – Jr.& Sr.
Mandolin: Two divisions – Jr.& Sr.
Additional individual categories: Autoharp, Dulcimer, Bass Fiddle, Dobro, Hammered Dulcimer
14. INDIVIDUAL OR BANDS WHO WIN FOR TWO CONSECUTIVE YEARS MUST DROP OUT OF COMPETITION FOR ONE YEAR. After a fiddler has won “Fiddler of the Festival” three times, he/she will have proven to be a master fiddler and will be elevated from competition to a special performing artist on our program during the festival.
15. PERFORMER PASSES will be issued at the gate to all returning bands that register by May 20th. Band Leaders will receive a registration confirmation and are responsible for getting the confirmation to all members of their band. Members will present the confirmation at the entrance in exchange for their personal pass. *NOTE* To encourage family members to attend, we offer a discounted ticket to the spouse of each band member for $5. The children of band members, under the age of 17, will be admitted for free. Please let your band members know about this excellent offer. Passes will not be mailed. Regular camping fees will apply to all band members.
16. In order to save playing time, we ask band leaders not to introduce band members on stage.
17. Sound system adjustments will be made and remain at the same setting throughout each round of eliminations, with the exception of feedback adjustments by the official sound technician only. Rules are subject to modification at the sole discretion of Festival Management.
18. Hot licks competition: Open to all instruments. Each contestant will play one break (possibly two) to a standard tune. There will be 2 rounds. Please visit website for details.