Workshop Schedule

Dulcimoon Virtual Dulcimer Gathering offers your choice of 3 classes on Saturday and up to 3 workshops on Sunday. Our teachers (for both mountain and hammer dulcimer) will present subjects including tunes, songs, history, technique, and more! For our Saturday finale, everyone is invited to our popular Playing Circle! Each day will be planned for maximum time in community with our international group of dulcimer aficionados.

Thursday Meet & Greet

01/12/23 – 7:30pm CST

5:30pm PST/ 6:30pm MST/ 7:30pm CST/ 8:30pm EST

Join us for a fun Zoom orientation; including a teacher meet & greet, and the basics on how to get to your classrooms. 

Friday Faculty Concert

01/12/23 – 7:30pm CST

5:30pm PST/ 6:30pm MST/ 7:30pm CST/ 8:30pm EST

Absolute Beginner




All Levels

Saturday 01/14/23

($80 early bird / $100) Three 75min classes on hammer & mountain dulcimer (including baritone), plus a playing circle!

Pre-event Zoom review – 8:30am CST

6:30am PST

7:30am MST

8:30am CST

9:30am EST

Community Orientation – 9am CST

7am PST

8am MST

9am CST

10am EST

Meet & Greet Break-Out Rooms

Playing Circle – 3pm CST

1-2:30pm PST

2-3:30pm MST

3-4:30pm CST

4-5:30pm EST

All are welcome! Come join us!


Sat. 9:30-10:45 am CST

Class Period 1

7:30-8:45am PST

8:30-9:45am MST

9:30-10:45am CST

10:30-11:45am EST

Mountain Dulcimer Classes:

Songs About the Moon
Karen Mueller - MD

(All Levels except New Players): Let’s get the festival started with a variety of favorite songs that celebrate the moon, including early popular music, jazz, traditional and rock styles. Practice your chords and rhythm strumming while enjoying familiar favorites in tab or chord chart formats.

String Side Up for the Mountain Dulcimer
Judy House - MD

(Complete Beginners): You want to play the mountain dulcimer. Let’s get off to a great start. In this class we will learn to tune, strum, fret, take care of our dulcimer, read tab and play our first tunes. It will all involve loads of excitement, information, and laughs! Fasten your seatbelts and let’s take off into a wonderful new world! Bring your instrument, a Snark or Korg tuner, and a pick!

Approaches to Improvisation
Sarah Kate Morgan - MD

(Adv): I wanna show you how to loosen up and liven up your playing. I’m gonna give you the tools to be able to make up interesting and musical things on the fly. We’ll start with learning two ways I approach improvisation. Then I’ll be
teaching a simple tune with lots of room to experiment, then using these approaches to improvise within the structure of the tune. Knowledge of chords and/or chord shapes will be very helpful for the class. DAD tuning.

Hammer Dulcimer Classes:

Getting Out of Your Own Way
Tina Bergmann - All Levels/Instruments

Kick out your inner critic so you can make music with joy and freedom. I think we all struggle with some form of an inner critic, and sometimes that jerk can really inhibit creativity and undermine confidence. We’ll discuss different ways our inner critics present themselves, and ways to silence them so you can get on with the joy of music making and enjoy the growth you deserve.

Finding Your Way Around the Hammered Dulcimer
Karen Alley - HD

(Beg): We’ll start at the very beginning in this workshop. First, we’ll discuss how to tune your instrument successfully, which is a great way to get familiar with all the note locations. Then we’ll dive into the details of the hammered dulcimer layout, discuss different ways to think about it, and find some basic scales and chords. By the end of the workshop, you should have more confidence moving around and understanding the notes on your dulcimer.


Sat. 11:00-12:15 am CST

Class Period 2

9-10:15am PST

10-11:15am MST

11am-12:15pm CST

12-1:15pm EST

Mountain Dulcimer Classes:

Mixing It Up – Dynamic Arranging
Karen Mueller - MD

(Int+): Have you ever learned a song and wanted to do more with it? Make your music come to life with arranging techniques that include musical dynamics, dulcimer tricks, chord substitutions, and melodic variations.

Moving DAD Tab to AEA
DJ Hamouris - Baritone MD

(Int): End up playing your DAD tab in 2 keys – both A & D. Transposition tools will be presented and practiced, including both melody & chord progressions. Learn the notes available in both DAD & AEA tunings, along with linear & cross-string scales in D, G, & A to assist this process. End up with a couple of tunes and new skills for future transposition! AEA tuning.

Recollections in Song and Story
Laurie Alsobrook - MD

(All levels): Inspired by Jean Ritchie’s book “Singing Family of the Cumberlands,” this workshop offers recollections that transport us to another era.. Consider these songs front porch favorites as you imagine a family gathering at the end of the day to recount the day’s activities and to bring in the twilight. Several tunings will be presented, including DAD, DAA, and DAC.

Hammer Dulcimer Classes:

Body Reset (All Instruments welcome!)
Tina Bergmann - HD

 (All Levels/Instruments): Are you sore or tight after playing your instrument? Does your practice or playing time get cut short because you’re hurting? This workshop will create awareness around how you’re using your body, and help to alleviate discomfort during and after playing. We’ll discuss and practice safe and gentle movements, many done seated, to reset the body and create healthier and more relaxed posture overall, both in the practice room and out!

Triplet Time: Exploring a Powerful Pattern for Ornamentation
Karen Alley - HD

(Adv Beg/Int): One of the best patterns to perfect when you’re starting to add ornaments to a melody line is a triplet followed by a melody note. This can be done on consecutive notes in a scale to create a melodic ornament, or over a chord to support the harmony. We’ll talk about where and how to fit these ornaments into tunes, practice the hammer technique, and work on some exercises to help you perfect these ornaments.


Sat. 12:15pm -1:30pm CST

Lunch Social

(Home Room open for socializing)

10:15-11:30am PST

11:15am-12:30pm MST

12:15-1:30pm CST

1:15-2:30pm EST


Sat. 1:30pm -2:45pm CST

Class Period 3

11:30am-12:45pm PST

12:30-1:45pm MST

1:30-2:45pm CST

2:30-3:45pm EST

Mountain Dulcimer Classes:

Put that Tab in your Tablet
Melanie Johnston - MD

(All levels): If you have binders full of music and cart them with you when you go out to play, you may want to consider an electronic music database program. There are apps for all tablet types. In this class we will specifically work with a popular program – forScore – specific to iPad. If you have an iPad with forScore installed, bring it to class. Alternatively and if you don’t have forScore or a tablet, you can come to just listen and see what these programs can do.
Equipment: For class, you may choose to watch, listen and take notes or log on to zoom with your computer and work alongside on your ipad. The workshop will be recorded.

Bass Dulcimer as Lead and Solo Instrument
Karen Mueller - MD

(Int+): Because of its heavier wound strings and lower voice, the bass dulcimer should be approached differently than a standard. Come learn special techniques that can help you get the most out of playing your bass, whether you’re strumming, flatpicking, or fingerpicking. Low DAD tuning.

Advanced Flatpicking Techniques
Erin Mae - Standard & Chromatic MD

(Adv): Learn to use all of your strings for playing melody, instead of just the melody string! You will discover how to convert a melody-string tune into a flat-picked arrangement, which picks work best for flat-picking, how to increase your speed and accuracy by playing single strings, and how to play several fun tunes. We will also explore some of the fretting-hand embellishments that work best with flat-picking.

Rhythm Attack!
Judy House - MD

(Adv Beg/Int): Understanding rhythm is one of the most important factors in a musician’s ability to read and make music.  Learning to play rhythms correctly takes practice.  Daily rhythm practices or exercises is essential for developing your rhythm and musicianship skills.  In this workshop, we will explore a number of exercises to use to develop your rhythm skills.

Instant Variations for New Players
Sarah Kate Morgan - MD

(Beginner): I’ll be sharing a simple tune, then showing you at least 7 ways to instantaneously add variation and make it your own, no hours of laborious practice needed. These techniques can be applied to any tune, not just the one we learn in class. This is a repeated class from QuarenTune 1.0; I’ll be teaching the same concepts but using different tune. DAD tuning.

Hammer Dulcimer Classes:

Put Away the Paper and Just Play!
Tina Bergmann - HD

(Int) Techniques for building confident memorization skills. Music reading is such a great tool to have in your toolbox, but the paper can become a crutch as well, getting between you and the musicality. We’ll discuss tried and true memorization techniques, including ways to multitask while playing so you’re giving your brain the types of distraction that performing brings. Most of these techniques benefit by-ear players as well!

Getting Your Fingers in the Game: Fundamentals of a Hammer Technique
Karen Alley - HD

(All levels): Whether you are brand new to the dulcimer and wondering how to hold your hammers or ready to return to fundamentals and reassess your hammer technique, this workshop is for you. We’ll talk about different approaches to using hammers, and then dive into the details of a technique that relies on getting your finger and thumb involved in driving the hammer movement. Working with this sort of technique will give you concrete things you can work on to improve your accuracy, speed, tone, and dynamics.



Sat. 3:00-4:30 CST

Playing Circle

Community Playing Circle
All Levels All Instruments

The playing circle is a time for you to play something for others, that you enjoy on your dulcimer, or just listen. In real-time, it is a jam circle as well, for anyone to join in on a song, try their hand at solos, etc. However, on zoom it will be a sharing time. Some people like to play something they just learned in a class, others a song they wrote, or an instrumental. We invite you all to attend, as you will hear such a variety from many players, novice to advanced, and everything in between! I will be leading it by choosing who’s up next- let us limit it to 1 song sharing, so as many as possible can play something. Please join us!

1-2:30pm PST

2-3:30pm MST

3-4:30pm CST

4-5:30pm EST

All are welcome! Come join us!

Saturday Concert

January 14th

Livestream Begins @ 6:00pm CST

Livestream Faculty Concert via
~ Karen Mueller & Tina Bergman (40 minutes each) + 1 other teacher (20 mins)

4:00 pm
5:00 pm
6:00 pm
7:00 pm

Sunday 01/15/23

Extended 2-hour Sunday Workshops

(A la carte $30 early bird / $35) Your choice of up to three 2hr workshops on hammer & mountain dulcimer (including chromatic and baritone)! 


Sun. 9:00am – 11:00am CST

Workshop 1

7-9am PST

8-10am MST

9-11am CST

10am-12pm EST

Mountain Dulcimer Classes:

Sweet Duets and Easy Ways to Harmonize
Karen Mueller - MD

(Int): Dulcimers sound great together with other dulcimers, especially with harmony playing. We’ll start off with a couple of duets that are already written, and then work on ways to create your own. Techniques include using parallel harmony, chord inversions, and flatpicking.

Mountain Dulcimer Joins the Band
Sarah Kate Morgan - MD

(Int/Adv): The focus of this class is to give you the tools you need to feel confident and comfortable playing the mountain dulcimer with other instruments. We’ll focus on how to play in multiple keys and switch keys quickly, tips on how to heard when playing with louder instruments, and the role the dulcimer can play in a band situation. DAD tuning, capo needed.

Hammer Dulcimer Classes:

Tap Into Your Inner Artist and Play Expressively
Tina Bergmann - HD

(Int): A sense of pulse is the heart of any well-performed piece of music, whether it’s the gentle pulse of a waltz, the energetic lift in a Bach minuet, or the deeply groovy drive of a fiddle tune. All too often music is performed flat, leaving the listener (and often the musician,) dissatisfied. We’ll explore ways to infuse your music with pulse and movement by learning techniques and concepts such as phrasing, micro and macro dynamics, arc, and more, You’ll have the opportunity to work on a piece of your choice later in the workshop, and also to play small parts of it for the other students if you desire feedback.


Sun. 11:15am – 1:15pm CST

Workshop 2

9:15-11:15am PST

10:15am-12:15pm MST

11:15am -1:15pm CST

12:15-2:15pm EST

Mountain Dulcimer Classes:

Baritone Dulcimer Tunes in Different Keys!
Dj Hamouris - Baritone MD

(Int): Over two hours we’ll explore: a Victorian song with a chord/melody arrangement and arpeggiated back-up; an original etude with standard or baritone duet back-up; an early-music dance medley; and an antique Italian dance tune. These should fill your next season with a variety of music to play and share. AEA and AEG tunings.

Fun With Improvising
Karen Mueller - MD

(Int+): Demystify improvisation with handy tips and tricks for making up melody lines over familiar chord progressions using scales, arpeggios, riffs and more. Participants will receive recorded backing tracks of the progressions to continue to use after the workshop.

Your Practice Toolbox (All Levels / All Instruments)
Judy House - MD

When it’s time to sit down and practice, what do we do?  Most of us have no idea!  We will be looking at things to do and ways to use your practice time wisely to get the most benefit out of that time.  I’ll give you some ways to use the metronome not only for keeping steady time, but to help perfect your music, and some tried and true practice tips to get those songs under your fingers!


Sun. 1:15pm-2:30pm CST


11:15am-12:30pm PST

12:15-1:30pm MST

1:15-2:30pm CST

2:15-3:30pm EST


Sun. 2:30pm-4:30pm CST

Workshop 3

12:30-2:30pm PST

1:30-3:30pm MST

2:30-4:30pm CST

3:30-5:30pm EST

Mountain Dulcimer Classes:

TablEdit for Experienced Users
Melanie Johnston - MD

If you have been using TablEdit but have questions, frustrations or are ready for some tips and tricks, come to this class! I have lots to show you and you will have the opportunity to ask questions.
Equipment: For class, you may choose to watch, listen and take notes or log on to zoom with your phone or tablet and work along side on your computer. The workshop will be recorded.

Explore the Possibilities of the Chromatic Mountain Dulcimer
Erin Mae - Chromatic MD

Come with Erin Mae on a whirlwind tour of Chromatic Mountain Dulcimer possibilities. We’ll embellish a simple tune with chromatic licks, play chords in all twelve keys, talk about reading standard notation, and end with a beautiful chord-melody arrangement full of colorful chords. There’s something for everyone on the chromatic mountain dulcimer, and this class will prove it!

Practice Drills to Improve Your Skills
Sarah Kate Morgan - MD

(Int): Instead of learning tunes, in this workshop I’ll share a variety of drills that you can incorporate into your practice. I’ve designed these 6 drills to help with issues like finger dexterity and choice, flatpicking speed and accuracy, and right and left hand connection. DAD tuning.

Hammer Dulcimer Classes:

Hammered Dulcimer Masterclass
Tina Bergmann - HD

(Int): In college, the first time I heard the term “masterclass” I immediately thought, “I’m not worthy!” You don’t need to be a master to play in a masterclass, rather, you need the desire to play in front of a compassionate group of your peers and get constructive feedback. At first the thought is terrifying, but once you jump in you’ll realize what an incredible opportunity it is to receive feedback from a variety of people. We’ll begin by discussing how to be a careful and articulate listener, how to give constructive observations about what you heard, what you enjoyed, and what you’d like to hear more of. It’s a fantastic way to get feedback on either a very comfortable piece or a piece that you might feel a bit stuck on. Join us! You’ll be so glad you did!

A Jean Ritchie Christmas Card

A Special Presentation by Aubrey Atwater

Saturday, 12/10/22,  4pm PST/ 5pm MST/ 6pm CDT/ 7pm EST
FREE with Zoom registration*

Join Aubrey in celebrating the 100th birthday of the late, great Jean Ritchie. When Aubrey drove to Hindman, Kentucky in 1992 to meet Jean, she never imagined they would become longtime friends and collaborators and that she would research Jean’s life and music for decades.
Jean Ritchie, the person primarily credited with introducing the mountain dulcimer to the wider music world in the mid-20th century, was a fascinating singer and curator of her eastern Kentucky family songs. She was also a beautiful songwriter, author, performer, scholar, and activist.

Aubrey will share personal stories and a brief timeline of Jean’s long career, and demonstrate some of Jean’s tunings and songs as well as her unique method of using the dulcimer as a harmony voice. Live performance, video and audio clips, photos, and a Q & A will all be part of the program.

Join us for this glimpse into the world of one of America’s most fascinating folk singers and mountain dulcimer players!

*You are invited to a Zoom meeting.
When: Dec 10, 2022 06:00 PM Central Time (US and Canada)

Register HERE in advance for this meeting

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

This presentation is a gift from the Dulcimoon Virtual Dulcimer Festival to the dulcimer community. There is no fee to attend or participate. If you would like to make a donation to our scholarship fund, please do so through our fiscal sponsor, here: DONATE HERE

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