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Musicians / Instructors

Stephen Seifert

Stephen Seifert’s teaching and playing has made him a favorite with dulcimer players all over the country since 1991. In that time, he’s been a featured performer at hundreds of dulcimer festivals and other music events including Kentucky Music Week in Bardstown, KY, Dulcimerville in Black Mountain, NC, the Augusta Heritage Center in Elkins, WV, the John C. Campbell Folk School in Brasstown, NC, the Ozark Folk Center in Mountain View, AR, Stringalong near Milwaukee, WI, the Walnut Valley Festival in Winfield, KS and The tono American Music Festival, in Tono, Japan.


Stephen has been a dulcimer soloist with the Nashville Chamber Orchestra, now know as Orchestra Nashville, since 1996 and is featured on their Warner Classical recording of Connie Ellisor and David Schnaufer’s Blackberry Winter, a concerto for mountain dulcimer and string orchestra. The piece continues to be in regular rotation on many classical stations around the U.S. (The recording album is titled “Conversations in Silence” and can be sampled and purchased on iTunes.) Stephen most recently performed this piece with the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra, the Tucson Symphony Orchestra, and the Montpelier Chamber Orchestra.


Stephen was Adjunct Instructor of Mountain Dulcimer with David Schnaufer at Vanderbilt’s Blair School of Music from 1997 to 2001. He also taught, performed, and recorded with Mr. Schnaufer as a duo throughout the country. Stephen has authored ten books, four CDs, and 16 instructional videos. Most recently, he has been teaching hundreds of students around the world via http://dulcimerschool.com.


Tull says: "Nearly twenty years ago, I was given my first mountain dulcimer as a Christmas present. I had grown up playing piano, organ, and several brass instruments all through high school and college, but I had never seen or heard of a dulcimer before. Because it only has 3 strings, and only half the frets of most stringed instruments, I dismissed it as just a toy, and not a 'real instrument'. So I thanked the gift-giver profusely, put the dulcimer in a closet, and forgot about it."


"Several years later, I happened upon the Central Indiana Folk Music and Mountain Dulcimer Society's annual festival at Eagle Creek Park in Indianapolis, and heard a couple of guest artists performing on the instrument. I was amazed at its versatility and captivated by its sound. I immediately went home and dug my mountain dulcimer out of the closet, joined the organization, found a teacher to get me started, and have rarely put it down since."


Judy is from Winston-Salem, NC where she lives with her husband, Kirk. A graduate of Campbell University, she has had an interesting and varying career as an educator. She retired from public education after 35 years.


Having been involved with music all her life playing the piano, flute, and other instruments, she was asked 10 years ago to teach dulcimer at her local community college. This led to a new career for her! She now enjoys teaching groups and individuals in her area. A graduate of the first class for Teaching the Mountain Dulcimer from Dulcimer U at Western Carolina University, she joined the Dulcimer U staff to teach year 1 of this core class in 2014. 


Judy is the music director for The Camel City Strummers Dulcimer Club which holds the Winston-Salem Dulcimer Festival each year in May. She also plays in the Cantabile Jubilee Dulcimer Trio and the Southern Appalachian String Section Quartet. Judy has written 5 dulcimer music books.


She is very fortunate that her passion for teaching as well as playing the dulcimer has led to her teaching at festivals around the country, including Dutchland Dulcimer Festival, Lancaster, PA, North Georgia Foothills Dulcimer Association Festival at Unicoi State Park, GA, and Black Mountain Music Week, Black Mountain, NC, among others. She was recently the presenter at Folkcraft’s Second Saturday Clinic in Woodburn, IN. She has also presented at the NC Music Educators Association Conference on using the dulcimer to teach music in schools, something she feels very strongly about.