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Practice makes perfect
Kaysea Fountain learns fiddle and jigging at Deninu School

Kassina Ryder
Northern News Services
Saturday, January 8, 2016

Kaysea Fountain is only in Grade 5 but she's already been playing the fiddle for years.

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Kaysea Fountain, Grade 5 student at Deninu School in Fort Resolution, has been learning how to play the fiddle since kindergarten. - photo courtesy of Kate Powell

The Deninu School student said she picked up the instrument in kindergarten and enjoyed it so much, she started bringing it home.

"It was really fun at first so I decided to keep working at it and to keep practicing," she said. "I kept on bringing a fiddle home to practice and bringing it back the next day."

Since then, Fountain has learned more than a dozen songs, including her favourite, Patrick's Reel.

"I like that one because it sounded really nice," she said. "It's kind of hard and long."

She received a fiddle of her own as an early birthday present last year and attended the Kole Crook Fiddle Association's annual summer camp last summer.

The camp was challenging and Fountain said she welcomed the opportunity to work on her skills.

"What I liked about it is we really worked hard," she said.

In addition to fiddling, Fountain is also a member of the school's jigging group. The group has been learning together for the past two years and has performed at a number of local and regional events.

"What got me interested is a lot of my family likes to jig," Fountain said. "I started jigging at talent shows. I watched the dance group jig and I asked if I could be in it and they said yes."

Fountain is now a leader in her jigging group and said for newcomers who want to learn, keeping it simple is the best way to start.

"I would tell them to remember a basic step that you want to do and and I would teach them the simple changes," she said.

Helping others learn to dance is one of the best aspects of becoming a good dancer herself, Fountain said.

"What I like is you can jig with anyone and you can teach anyone and it's really fun," she said.

The same rules apply when learning how to play the fiddle, she added.

"You need to keep in mind to remember what the strings are called and you gotta remember how to hold your bow," she said.

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