The boundary between “fiddle” and “violin” is sometimes wider in our culture than it should be. Versatile musicians who can make music both “on” and “off” the page are going to be successful in the future- either professionally, or by being able to pursue a variety of musical genres and approaches. Ellery’s students are encouraged to try a range of musical experiences outside lessons, from school strings programs to local jam sessions, fiddle camps and group studio workshops and recitals with fellow Powers fiddle teacher Amy Beshara.
Ellery is also the director of Fiddling on the Hill, Powers’ full day summer strings camp week held at the end of July. Fiddling on the Hill is open to any violin, viola or cello player looking for a week experiencing a variety of fiddle traditions, as well as their choice of improvisation, percussive dancing, visual art, singing, and arranging and harmonising for ensemble playing.
Classically trained, Ellery graduated from Cincinnati’s famed School for Creative and Performing Arts in 1992. She received an MA in Irish Traditional Music Performance from the University of Limerick in 2001. She was certified in Alice Kanack’s Creative Ability Development method in 2019, the Mark O’Connor Method Books I & II in 2013, and Music Together in 2008. She has been a member of many Irish ensembles, most notably as the fiddler for acclaimed, nationally touring Irish band Gaelic Storm from 2003-2007. She was a featured soloist with the Lake Superior Chamber Orchestra in Duluth, MN in 2015, performing Nickitas Demos’ “Long Journey Home, Double Concerto for Celtic Fiddler and Bluegrass Fiddler.” Currently she performs across New England with the fiddle, flute and guitar trio Fódhla.
Ellery has taught fiddling workshops and lessons in the US, Ireland, Bermuda and Japan. She was a teacher at Boston’s Comhaltas Ceoltoiri Eireann Irish music school from 2013-2017 and has been a Powers faculty member since 2013. She also maintains a violin and fiddle studio in Medford and is a visiting music specialist for two preschools in the greater Boston area.
Ellery also is a parent of two who shuttles her own two budding musicians (who between them play clarinet, fiddle, and piano) to their lessons.