Teen Is Now A Three-Time State Fiddle Champion

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Andy Towle/Roundup - atowle@payson.com

Surrounded by volunteers and contestants at the 39th Annual Vertilee Floyd Memorial Old-Time Fiddlers Contest, Anne Kirkpatrick, left, chats with fellow fiddlers and accompanists, as they wait backstage for their number to be called. From left to right are, Blaine Cane, Anne Kirkpatrick, Irene Neal, Paul Baker and Norman Long.

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Andy Towle/Roundup - atowle@payson.com

Ruth Gilpin concentrates on her first of three selections during the relaxed competition at the fiddle fest. Gilpin, at 95 years old, was the oldest contestant at this year’s event.

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Andy Towle/Roundup - atowle@payson.com

Hansce Thompson, left, and Sara Done, both violinists, check out the different parts of violins at the booth on the fiddle fest grounds at Amity’s Acres in Payson.

Andrew Donald from Mesa, was named the champion at the 39th Annual Vertilee Floyd Memorial Old-Time Fiddlers Contest, Arizona State Championship, which was held in Payson during the weekend.

This is the third time in a row Donald has won the Arizona State title. This has not been done since 1985 and this young man is only 17 years old, the youngest three-time winner ever for Arizona. Because he has won the state championship three years in a row, he has to retire for five years from competing for the Arizona State Championship.

Division first-place winners were as follows:

Small Fry, Elizabeth Johnson, Camp Verde

Junior-Junior, Brandi Shaan, Phoenix

Junior, Andrew Donald, Mesa

Young Adult, Matthew Rolland, Mesa

Adult, Peter Rolland, Mesa

Senior, Sue Elsclager, Tucson

State champion winners division

First, Andrew Donald, 17, Mesa; second, Katherine Messer, 14, Scottsdale; third, Matthew Rolland, 22, Mesa; fourth, Hans Bhalla, 15, Tucson; fifth, Peter Rolland, 63, Mesa, sixth; Eden Rolland, 27, Phoenix; and seventh, Brandi Shaan, 11, Phoenix.

Special Awards

Youngest Fiddler, Elisabeth Johnson, 9

Eldest Fiddler, Ruth Gilpin, 95

JW, Vertilee, and Kayla Floyd Memorial Award, Lauriena Rinehart

Accompanist first place, Michael Rollan, who was only able to be at the contest on Sunday.

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