HINDMAN, KY – Seven Kentucky master artists have been awarded Folk and Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Grants from the Kentucky Arts Council.
The Folk and Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Grant provides $3,000 to a Kentucky master folk or traditional artist to teach skills, practices and culture to less experienced artists from the same community during the course of a year.
The seven recipients are folk or traditional artists who are considered masters within their community and who have identified an apprentice from the same community who has potential to become a master. Both master and apprentice must be Kentucky residents.
Douglas Naselroad, a Master Luthier from Winchester, KY, has worked to establish the Appalachian School of Luthiery in Hindman, KY, for the past four years. A previous awardee of the Folk Apprenticeship grant, in recent years, Naselroad received the 2016 Kentucky Governor’s Award in the Arts in the Folk Tradition Category on behalf of the Appalachian Artisan Center’s Hindman Dulcimer Project and in 2017, was awarded the Homer Ledford Award in Luthiery. He and his apprentice, Kris Patrick, have committed to make at least two instruments in the coming year from Appalachian hardwoods such as Kentucky Black Locust, Black Walnut, and Red Spruce. The use of sustainable Appalachian hardwoods in instruments made at the Appalachian School of Luthiery is a defining feature of the Troublesome Creek Stringed Instruments label.
Kris Patrick, from Mousie, KY, in Knott County has apprenticed at the Luthiery in Hindman since 2014, and has already built several “Uncle Ed Thomas” style dulcimers, a tenor ukulele, and a flat iron style mandolin. With the assistance provided this year by the Kentucky Arts Council Folk Apprenticeship Grant, he hopes to add guitars to his ever-growing list of instrument achievements.
“The folk and Apprenticeship Grant has been key to developing new talent in Luthiery. It is not only a help, but represents an incredible encouragement and validation to emerging artists,” said Naselroad.
The masters and apprentices who will receive funding include:
Cynthia Sue Massek (Willisburg), who will teach Appalachian women’s music to Melody Youngblood (Berea); Lakshmi Sriraman (Lexington), who will teach Bharatanatyam (Indian dance style) to Vasundhara Parameswaran (Lexington); Justin Bonar-Bridges (Ft. Thomas), who will teach traditional Irish music and Clare style fiddling to Emmanuel Gray (Covington); Hong Shao (Nicholasville), who will teach pipa (traditional Chinese stringed instrument) to Leah Werking(Carlisle); Douglas Naselroad (Winchester/Hindman), who will teach guitar making to Kris Patrick (Mousie); Gary Cornett (Louisville), who will teach old time Kentucky fiddling and luthiery to Walter Lay (Louisville); and John Harrod (Owenton), who will teach eastern Kentucky old time fiddle tunes and style to James Webb(Frankfort).
Visit the Folk and Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Grant page of the arts council’s website for more information or contact Mark Brown, arts council folk and traditional arts director, firstname.lastname@example.org or 502-892-3115.
Information about the Appalachian School of Luthiery at the Appalachian Artisan Center in Hindman can be found online at www.artisancenter.net .