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Mendhi hands by Pushpa Jain. Photographer unknown. All rights reserved.Fish decoy. Photo by Pearl Yee Wong. All rights reserved.Embroidered dress detail. Photo by Pearl Yee Wong. All rights reserved.Cedar bird by Glen VanAntwerp. Photo by Al Kamuda. All rights reserved.
Michigan Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Awards

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Marty Somberg and Sheila Ruby Graziano
2014 master artist and apprentice
Saline and Chelsea (Washtenaw County)
old time and Irish fiddle

SombergSheila Ruby Graziano (left) and Marty Somberg (right).

Marty Somberg first began playing music through his affiliation with a synagogue. He started with piano, and later added the ukulele and guitar. Through his adolescence in the 1960s, Marty played in many folk and rock groups. In the 1970s Marty lived in Berkeley, California, where he began a deep interest and affection for old time music. He began learning to play the fiddle, and expanded his repertoire to include bluegrass and Irish styles as well. Today, Marty hosts a weekly Irish session at Connor O’Neill’s Pub in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and plays a monthly contra dance with the Sharon Hollow String Band. He also performs with a band called Big Fun for dances and concerts around the Midwest.

Sheila is a master percussive dancer who has been learning fiddle for many years. She is interested in learning the fiddle to better communicate the musicality of dance, as well as to build a new skill and gain a new artistic ability.

Micah Ling

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