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About Joanna

Joanna Clare, who hails from Central New York, is a well-respected Irish fiddler and violinist and recently released her debut album, To Keep the Candle Burning. The album features NEA National Heritage Fellow Billy McComiskey, and All-Ireland champions Brian Conway and Josh Dukes, along with Myron Bretholz, Sean McComiskey, Matt Mulqueen, Catherine O’Kelly, and Liam Presser.


At the age of three, Joanna began learning classical violin through the Suzuki method at the Hochstein School in Rochester, New York, and she later studied with Maggie Mercer, Harumi Rhodes, and Peter Rovit. When she was eleven, she began studying Irish fiddle with Brian Conway who was highly instrumental in her musical development. Joanna has won many awards including five championship titles in the annual Mid-Atlantic Fleadhanna Ceoil (Irish music competitions) which are run by Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann (the Irish Traditional Musicians’ Association). In August 2021, she was awarded runner-up for the senior fiddle slow airs competition at the FleadhFest in Sligo, Ireland. Joanna has performed at numerous festivals, including the Syracuse Irish Festival, the Rochester Irish Festival, the Springwater Fiddler's Fair, the Maryland Irish Festival, the New York Trad Fest, the Philadelphia Ceili Group Traditional Irish Music and Dance Festival, and the Philadelphia Folk Festival.  Joanna is certified to teach violin with the Suzuki Association of the Americas and teaches Suzuki violin and Irish fiddle lessons. She also assists in teaching The Great Groove Band, a children’s pick-up band, at the Philadelphia Folk Festival. 


Joanna lives in Baltimore, Maryland where she earned her degree in materials science and engineering from Johns Hopkins University. There she works as a manufacturing engineer and helps to keep the traditional Irish arts alive through performance and pedagogy. She often performs at local venues including The Arthouse, The James Joyce Irish Pub and Restaurant, Racers Cafe, and The Wine Collective as a member of the bands Celtic Corridor, Mount Clare, and The Good Folk She teaches at through her private studio and through The Baltimore Irish Music School and The Baltimore Music Company.

Biography: Bio

Photo by Anna Colliton

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