Class Offerings Winter/Spring 2022
Registration is open!

Pete's Favorites - with Pete Sutherland  *FULL*
Beginner Banjo - with Tom MacKenzie - cancelled
French Canadian Tunes - with Keith Murphy and Becky Tracy

Int/Adv Banjo - with Tom MacKenzie
Youth Fiddle Club and Teen Trad Band - with Joanne Garton


To register, securely pay online by clicking the button next to the class of your choosing. Or, email the registrar at and send a check for the amount listed to: Summit School, 46 Barre St. #5  Montpelier, VT 05602.

Remote classes are held via Zoom. Each instructor will receive a class list from the registrar and will send out a welcome email with a Zoom link prior to class.

In-person classes are held at the Center for Arts and Learning at 46 Barre St. in Montpelier. Masks are required in the building at all times. 

Contact the registrar, Tracy Loysen, at or 802-522-3083 with questions.

YOUTH FIDDLE CLUB with Joanne Garton - in person

Saturdays April 2, 9, 30 and May 7, 14, 10:30 - 11:30 am, 5 weeks, $50


For intermediate fiddlers who can confidently play through tunes from the Scottish, Irish, Cape Breton, and Old-Time traditions and are looking to play music together with other kids in the area. Learn a few new tunes, practice familiar tunes, create some harmonies, and even bring your piano, guitar, or mandolin-playing friends! Contact Joanne at with questions. 



TEEN TRAD BAND with Joanne Garton - in-person

Saturdays, April 2, 9, 30 and May 7, 14, 11:30 am - 12:30 pm, 5 weeks, $50.


For advanced traditional musicians (teens or almost teens) interested in creating tune sets, harmonies, and arrangements, and learning about each other’s instruments and musical backgrounds. Get your favorite tunes ready for the dance hall (for when we get to dance together again)! All instruments welcome with a focus on New England, Celtic, and Old-Time tunes. Contact Joanne at with questions. 

Fiddler and dancer Joanne Garton mixes her pervasive passion for Scottish culture with the drive and rhythms of the New England dance floor. She performs, teaches, and records traditional music and dance from Scotland and Cape Breton with big influences from Ireland, England, Quebec, Appalachia and New England. A resident of Montpelier, Vermont, for the last 12 years, Joanne teaches kids and adults, performs on stage, plays in sessions, and of course, steps out on the dance floor at contra, Scottish, and English dances. Visit for videos, sound bites, gig listings, and more.


PETE’S FAVORITES with Pete Sutherland – remote (via Zoom)

Tuesdays, 7:00 – 8:00 pm, 6 weeks, $120. Starts Feb. 22


Pete Sutherland has conducted many classes over the years focusing on tunes and traditions from across the American old-time diaspora. In this new class Pete will share some of his all-time favorite pieces from his fifty years of traveling, learning and playing, including original sources, stories of the music’s travels across the old and new worlds and all manner of stylistic detail. For intermediate and advanced players. Non-fiddlers welcome although they should expect there to be regular discussion of bowing.


A warm voiced singer-songsmith and accomplished multi-instrumentalist, Pete Sutherland is known equally for his potent originals and his intense recreations of age-old ballads and fiery fiddle tunes. On the fiddle he is something of a ‘multi-lingualist” by trade, though he is best known for his deep Appalachian groove. He has been on staff at dance and music camps coast to coast and is a widely-known teacher and performer. Sutherland is a veteran of many touring and recording groups including Metamora, Rhythm in Shoes, the Clayfoot Strutters and recently the intergenerational trio Pete’s Posse.


BEGINNER BANJO with Tom MacKenzie – remote (via Zoom)

Tuesdays, 7:00 - 8:00 pm, 6 weeks, $120. Starts March 1


Learn the basics of the Banjo, including common techniques, chords, and fingering. The emphasis will be on Old Time/clawhammer style, but you will gain skills that will allow you to branch out on your own.


Wednesdays, 7:00 - 8:00 pm, 6 weeks, $120. Starts March 2


So you know a few tunes, now it’s time to spice them up. We will explore a variety of tunes, new and old, as well as some different tunings. We will also work on how you can play along with a song or tune that you don’t know yet, while making it sound like you do.

Tom MacKenzie has been playing Banjo for over fifty years now and continues to learn new tricks and techniques. His approach to teaching is to guide players, allowing for discovery, while at the same time keeping it fun.


FRENCH CANADIAN TUNES with Keith Murphy and Becky Tracy – remote (via Zoom)

Tuesdays 7:30 - 8:30 pm, 6 weeks, $120. Starts March 29 (NOTE: this is a change!)


This will be an intensive course focused on French Canadian fiddle tunes. It will be geared towards the intermediate player, but open to all players looking to expand or solidify their Québécois repertoire. The material will be a mix of crooked and straight tunes, some great session tunes, some less common, easy and more challenging. Later classes will involve more review of the previously taught tunes. We will be ready to adapt according to the needs and desires of the students. All tunes will be taught solely by ear. Students will have access to the class video afterwards and there will be a follow-up video of the new tune of the week. All instruments are welcome.


Keith and Becky are veteran teachers at music camps across the country and have been on faculty with the Brattleboro Music Center for 15 years teaching weekly classes in traditional music. They are popular and highly skillful teachers and have been very effective in the online format. 

Refund and Payment Policies:


  • After the first week of programming, no refunds will be provided. 

  • Student cancellation the week before the program begins results in a refund of ½ the tuition.

  • No refunds or make-up classes offered for student absences due to illness or family emergency.

The Summit School is a non-profit folk music school located in Montpelier, Vermont.  We host ongoing group classes in music and dance for children and adults.   The Summit School also hosts Trad Camp for Kids in the summer, Summer Picking Parties, and Spice on Snow winter music festival.  
Contact:, 802-279-2236 for more info.