Katie Moritz and Lisa Ferguson
Katie Moritz and Lisa Ferguson are two award-winning hammered dulcimer players who've joined together to create an eclectic sound on an already eclectic instrument! They believe in the old saying "two heads are better than one" and add that "four hands can be better than two when it comes to the hammered dulcimer". Hailing from different regions of the country, and having very different musical backgrounds, Katie and Lisa have combined their sound to create something entirely new, while still respecting and utilizing the traditional roots of the instrument they both fell in love with. Their CD entitled "Kaleidoscope" is a truly collaborative effort featuring traditional tunes arranged with a modern twist, as well as new music that they've co-written. After meeting in 2010 and immediately recognizing their musical compatibility, the two began playing together, sharing ideas and techniques, and forming their current sound.
Lisa Ferguson is the 2009 National Hammer Dulcimer Champion. Originally from Texas, she now lives in Chattanooga TN, which is where she began playing the hammered dulcimer. She remembers the first time she heard the instrument being played. She was immediately drawn to the beautiful sounds emanating from it and thought it also looked like fun to be drumming on strings! Lisa studied classical piano through her youth and was always encouraged by her father to follow her passion for music. She considers herself geographically blessed to have 3 highly regarded dulcimer players in Chattanooga to learn from. She began studying the dulcimer with, dulcimer super-star, Dan Landrum, and also credits Christie Burns and Stephen Humphries for their teaching and influencing her style. In 2009, Lisa decided to take her talents to a competitive level by entering the Southern Regional Hammered Dulcimer Competition in Mountainview, AK where she placed first. The experience encouraged her to enter the national contest in Winfield, Kansas where she also placed first, an outstanding feat not often accomplished by a first time competitor.
Katie Moritz is the 2011 Southern Regional, and 2010 Mid-Eastern Regional Dulcimer Champion. She is native to the Chicago area, growing up in Joliet, and residing in Sugar Grove. She first saw the hammered dulcimer as a small child and began attending a local dulcimer festival not long after. Her love and appreciation for the instrument stem from spending over a decade of her youth watching area musicians play and dreaming of some day playing the instrument herself. Katie grew up very active in music, playing piano, tuba, and singing, but her relationship with the art didn't flourish until she purchased herself a hammered dulcimer and began studying with the great, Bill Robinson of St. Charles IL. While in college studying graphic design, Katie chose to also study music "on the side", focusing on theory as it relates to the dulcimer, composition, and percussion. She earned an AFA degree in Music Performance. She was motivated by her music theory instructor to begin composing music and developing a more personal style and method of playing. Her first composition earned her first place in the 2010 Mid-Eastern Regionals, as well as a finalist position in the National Hammer Dulcimer Competition that year.