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Arts / Evie named Shetland’s Young Fiddler of the Year

Evie Williamson.

SHETLAND has a new Young Fiddler of the Year – 14-year-old Evie Williamson from Whalsay.

She was declared was declared the 41st winner of the title in a busy Mareel auditorium on Saturday night.

She took home the Frank Jamieson Memorial Trophy as well as both the trophies for the Open and Traditional competitions.

Evie follows in the footsteps of her older brother Magnus who won the title in 2021, and like him she was playing a fiddle made by their dad Gilbert.

Intermediate winners: Winnie Johnston, Maisy Nicolson, Zander Williamson.

Kristie Williamson (13) won the Cat Gut and Ivory trophy for the best played reel and was second in both the senior competitions.

Ami Grains (13) won the Martin Laurenson Memorial Trophy for the best played slow air and came third in both senior competitions.

Lexi Tulloch (11) won both the Junior Young Fiddler and Junior Traditional competitions whilst twelve year old Winnie Johnston won the Intermediate Young Fiddler of the Year and thirteen year old Maisy Nicolson won the Intermediate Traditional title.

Senior winners: Ami Grains, Evie Williamson, Kristie Williamson.

Zander Williamson took home the trophy for the best played waltz in the Intermediate competition.

Judge Stella Wilkie, from Fife, said: “It has been great to see so many young fiddlers develop in their playing and confidence over my three years judging.

Junior winner: Lexi Tulloch.

“I have learned so much about the Shetland style of playing from the young players and my fellow judges.”

Jenna Reid returned for her second year as a judge and added: “It has been amazing to see competitors move from one age group to the other and make so much progress as a result of their hard work and practice.

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“They work the young fiddlers and their tutors put into their music has to be admired.”

Meanwhile Mary Rutherford enjoyed her first year as a judge. “It is great to see the enthusiasm the fiddlers bring to the stage from such a young age,” she said.

“The variety of Shetland tunes played is amazing and everyone leaves with new tunes in their head they are keen to learn.”

In the Junior Young Fiddler section Robbie Johnson (10) was second and Jessie Leslie (11) and Ellie Tait (10) were third equal.

Ellie Tait was second in the Junior Traditional and Richie Stein was third.

In the Intermediate Young Fiddler Maisy Nicolson (13) was second and Ollie Jamieson (11) and Roshik Saravanan (12) were third equal.

Winnie Johnston (12) was second in the Intermediate Traditional competition and Ross Drakeford (12) and Sinead Jamieson (13) were third equal.

Yelena Anderson won the Junior Shetland Folk Society Tune Competition with a tune called Trip to Penicuik.

Jayden Moore was second with Liam in da Suitcase and Mairianne Jamieson was third with the Kettlebaak Jig.

Elizabeth Jamieson won the Senior Shetland Folk Society Tune Competition with Ruby’s Waltz. George Spence was second with Da Pleepsin Puppy and Jenny Henry was third with Jjaegg’s Reel.

Jenny also won the Best Reel in the Shetland Style with the same tune.

Shetland Folk Society Secretary Valerie Watt  said: “What a fantastic weekend of music and we are so proud of every single fiddler who has taken to the stage to entertain us this weekend. Huge thanks to their tutors and families for all the support. Our musical heritage is certainly alive in well in our young folk.”

Shetland Folk Society Tune Competition winners: Jenny Henry, Yelena Anderson, Elizabeth Jamieson.

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