Deb Shebish is a versatile classical violinist, traditional fiddler, and licensed educator originally from Whiting, Indiana. She has performed at venues including: the The Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, TN with Mairead Ni Mhaonaigh, Ric Blair and Tim O’Brien, the United States Air Force Academy, at the Kelly House in Philadelphia for the Prince of Monaco, the Indianapolis Irish Festival, the Waterford Tall Ships Festival in Ireland, Bangor Celtic Crossroads Festival, Saline Celtic Festival, and the Leith Folk Club in Scotland. In 2018, she won Grand Champion Fiddle at the Lyon’s Fiddle Festival and first in old-time fiddle at the 2017 Hoppin’ John Festival in North Carolina. Deb has performed as a contract violinist with the Terre Haute, IN, Danville, IL, Muncie, IN, and Richmond, IN Symphony Orchestras. In addition to concerts and festivals, Deb is in demand as a contra and square dance fiddler and has performed at dances throughout the United States and has accompanied the Green Grass Cloggers from Asheville, NC.
Deb’s love of old-time, bluegrass and Irish fiddling dates from the late ‘90s trad scene in Bloomington, Indiana, where she had the opportunity to play with and learn from many fine musicians. In 2000, Deb met Joe Dawson, (1928-2012), an old-time fiddler from south-central Indiana who grew up deeply immersed in the traditional music of that area. Joe was a major influence on Deb’s music, and she loves to share both his unique style and the repertoire that she learned from him at his weekly living room jams.
Deb holds a master’s degree in Scottish Studies from the University of Edinburgh, Scotland, and a Bachelors of Music in Violin Performance from Indiana State University and went on to further study string pedagogy with Mimi Zweig at Indiana University, Bloomington. Her masters thesis focused on how traditional fiddle is taught to youth in the Orkney Isles, Scotland. While at the University of Edinburgh, she contributed to two Greentrax Scottish Traditions CD’s: “Orkney: Land Sea and Community” and “Chokit On A Tattie”.
Deb is a versatile licensed music educator who has taught for Philadelphia Classical School, Young Children’s Center for the Arts, Tune Up Philly, The School District of Philadelphia, Indianapolis Public Schools, Teach for America in the Mississippi Delta, The Metropolitan Youth Orchestra of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, and St. Mary of the Woods College.
She released her first album, Kitchen Fiddle, in September 2015 and is currently working on the documentary film Hoosier Fiddlers: Celebrating Indiana’s Fiddle Traditions.