STEP Fiddlers Members Page

Welcome and welcome back…

… to members new and returning, for another year of fine music-making in the Newfoundland tradition!

This year’s classes are taught by Maria Cherwick, Carole Bestvater, and Christina Smith; the performing ensemble is led by Christina Smith; and all the day-to-day details are taken care of by Heather Patey, STEP Fiddle manager. Email Heather at with any questions.

This year, the STEP Fiddlers have extra Fiddle Days on Saturdays when there is no group class;
– 9:30-10:30, is Trad Times, either a jam-session or a set-dance, especially for Fiddle 1’s and 2’s, although everyone is welcome (including friends and family who want to play or dance!);
– 10:30-12noon is an ensemble rehearsal for Fiddle 3’s and 4’s.
All this takes place in the MMaP Gallery, 2nd floor of Arts and Culture Centre.


All the fiddle sheet music and audio has moved to the new website, and can be found at the Fiddle Music Recordings page. This page is password-protected, using the same password as the old one: if you’re in need of the password, you can email Heather.

The performance repertoire  is as follows:

  • Basic
    • Mussels in the Corner / Paddy’s Jig
    • Auntie Mary / Brother’s Jig
    • Polkas: John Ryan’s / Kerry / Bill Sullivan’s
    • She Said She Couldn’t Dance / Come Upstairs
    • Angeline the Baker
    • Coming from the Races / Bridget Maher’s Tune
  • Medium
    • Mildred Murphy’s / The Girl I Left Behind Me
    • Gravel Pond Jig
    • Who Stole The Miner’s Hat
    • Go To the Cape, Uncle Joe / Four-Poster Bed
    • Uncle Manuel Milks The Cow
    • Rambling Pitchfork / Black Rogue
  • Advanced
    • Ivan White’s / Duffenais / Ed Doucette’s
    • Jim Rumbolt’s / Boston Laddie / Dr. Kielly-O
    • Reel de la Pistroli / Gerald Thomas’ Burnt Potato
    • Verkhovyna
    • Joe Aucoin’s Scottish Set (March / Strathspey / Reel)
    • Velvet In The Wind / Emile’s Dream
    • Tuvas Halling

These tunes aren’t prerequisites for membership, but rather a guide through the huge long list of tunes that you could be learning. The more players that know these, then the easier it will be to put off a performance with the maximum number of fiddlers playing. If you know them already, give them review time to keep them polished, and consider adding drones, harmony or ornaments to make them sound really professional and interesting!

Tribute to Émile Benoit

Émile Benoit


Émile Benoit was a famous fiddler from Black Duck Brook on the west coast of Newfoundland, who gave us hundreds of wonderful tunes that are still played today. He died on September 2, 1992.

On CBC Radio in 2012, on the 20th anniversary of his death, host Chris O’Neill-Yates broadcast interviews with his fellow musicians and many people who remember him fondly. Listen to the interviews (including one with Christina Smith and Matilda Goldie, one of our STEP Fiddlers) and a documentary on Émile, at the CBC’s website: Vive Émile.

One of “The Most Interesting People In Newfoundland”

Christina Smith


Speaking of famous fiddlers, Christina was interviewed on video by the newspaper The Independent in the spring of 2011. We all know she’s interesting, but now everyone does! Next time someone asks, “Who teaches you fiddle?” you can point them to this link.