Grand Master Fiddler Championship to be postponed until 2021


With very heavy hearts, and on the advice and endorsement by our Board of Directors, we have decided to cancel the 2020 Grand Master Fiddler Championship.  This is not a decision that we have taken lightly.


The contest is not just something we do; it is a labor of love and commitment to supporting the music we cherish and continuing the legacy started by Dr. Perry Harris, Roy Acuff, Bud Wendell, and others.  The reputation and prestige of the Grand Master Fiddler Championship is a commitment and heritage we take seriously and the health and welfare our of participants, their families, our audience, our sponsors, and the community at large must always be taken into consideration.


No one knows how long the health crisis will continue and whether things will get better or worse. We have considered alternative venues and methods we feel could allow the event to go on and we went right up to the wire in hoping to have the contest. But, with only seven weeks until the event, the work to hold the event starts in earnest and contestants have to make travel arrangements; and as the guidance and directives of the local and state public health officials is that traveling and gatherings such as this could present a health risk, we believe not holding the event is the correct and responsible decision.


We appreciate all the support we have received and continue to receive.  We will be back in 2021, bigger and better. Until that time, please be safe, be healthy, and keep supporting fiddling!


Howard and Ed




The Fiftieth Annual Grand Master Fiddler Championship will be held on Saturday September 4th and Sunday September 5th, 2021 (Labor Day Weekend), in Nashville, Tennessee, at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in the Ford Theater.  Contestants from all over the world will come to compete.  In 2019, Ridge Roberts of Texas claimed the Championship.  Who will the 2021 Champion be?  Please plan to join us for the competition!


You can see the competition LIVE as it happens via Livestream (stay tuned for more info)
Annnoucement: The Judges for the 2020 Grand Master Fiddler Championship are: Ridge Roberts, Larry Franklin, Deanie Richardson, Junior Marriott, and Chief Judge Bobby Taylor.
For information about the competition, schedule and host hotel, please click "FIDDLER COMPETITION" at the top or click here for the link.

On Saturday, the GMFC welcomed our special guest Ketch Secor, the fiddle player and founding member of the Grammy award winning group Old Crow Medicine Show. Ketch will be serving as a judge for the Traditional category and will be performing in the afternoon.


On Sunday, the GMFC welcomed back our youngest champion ever, Mark O’Connor Mark was honored with the Dr. Perry F. Harris Distinguished Fiddler, for his contributions and support for fiddle and fiddle music.  Mark and his wife Maggie did an amazing performance on Sunday afternoon, and had a lot of great information about the O'Connor Method, a new American School of String Playing.


Our special celebrity MCs for last year's competition were "The Farmer and Adele", with their modern-day western swing music and reimaging of the modern cowboy/cowgirl music of yester year. Besides serving as MCs and hosts, they performed on both days of the competition.  

The Grand Master Fiddler Championship Inc. is organized as a Tennessee nonprofit and U.S. IRS 501(c)(3) charitable corporation, formed to educate about and perpetuate fiddling as an art form and cultural treasure. The corporation's primary focus is holding the annual Grand Master Fiddler Championship competition - an event that has started many young musicians on their way to a career in music. As a 501(c)(3) entity, all donations are tax deductible, and we welcome your support to promote and educate about fiddling. Fund-raising efforts are being planned in order to expand the competition, enhance our educational efforts, and to further the awareness of fiddling around the globe.


Fiddling laid the foundation of the WSM Grand Ole Opry and remains important to country and bluegrass music today. For a quarter-century, the contest was sponsored by WSM, the Grand Ole Opry, the Country Music Association, and later by Gaylord Entertainment.  When financially able, the GMFC makes donations to such charities as the Grand Ole Opry Trust Fund and the Bluegrass Trust Fund which benefit musicians in need.  We do this in honor of the contributions of the pioneers to country, bluegrass and traditional music. Many of these pioneers such as Roy Acuff, Porter Wagoner, "Uncle Jimmy" Thompson, Bill Monroe, Howdy Forrester and Tommy Jackson played the fiddle or were very involved with fiddling. We have also donate fiddles/violins to the W. O. Smith Community Music School in Nashville.


Please tell all your fiddle music friends, websites, discussion lists and other music sites about this web page! Let us hear from you and we will add you to the GMFC email list.

2019 Dr. Perry F. Harris Distinguished Fiddler Award Recipient Mark O'Connor.



Help Support the Arts in Tennessee by participating in the Tennessee Specialty License Plate Program benefitting the Tennessee Arts Program - proceeeds from every license plate go to help fund Arts in Tennessee.  To get more information or order your plate please see

Print Print | Sitemap Recommend this page Recommend this page
© 2019 Carnes Group LLC. All Rights Reserved.