After 15 years of performing together and recording on each other’s solo albums, Portland, Maine-based flute player Nicole Rabata and Boston-based fiddler Ellery Klein decided a group together was long overdue. With the addition of Bethany Waickman on guitar, the trio found a sound rooted in the traditional Irish music Ellery and Nicole honed during years abroad in the Irish cities of Cork, Limerick, and Ennis. The trio is also influenced by the depths of Nicole’s virtuosic classical music career, Ellery’s Americana sounds, and Bethany’s soft-spoken, yet driving, guitar playing.
Fódhla have been well received at festivals such as Portland’s Saltwater Festival, the Maine Celtic Celebration, and the Boston Celtic Music Festival. Their debut recording, Notes from Millpond, was released in December 2015 to a sold-out show at Acoustic Artisans in Portland.
Fiddler Ellery Klein brings a style steeped in traditional Irish sounds seasoned with American fiddle styles. She toured with the Billboard-charting Irish music group Gaelic Storm from 2003-2007 and was a founding member of the all-female ensemble Long Time Courting. In 2015 she was invited to be a featured soloist with Duluth, MN’s Lake Superior Chamber Orchestra, performing Nickitas Demos’ Double Concert for Celtic and Bluegrass Fiddle. She holds an MA in Traditional Irish Music from the University of Limerick.
Irish flutist Nicole Rabata is highly regarded in traditional Irish, classical, and Brazilian choro music circles. She has toured America and Europe. In 2014 she spent two months in India where she performed and taught music at the Gandhi Ashram School in the Himalayas. She spent four years in the west of Ireland where she immersed herself in the local music and was influenced by the playing of many great musicians. She is on the music faculty at Colby College and the University of Maine Augusta, and has an active private home studio in Portland.
Bethany Waickman is a guitarist based out of Portland, Maine. She grew up in a musical family in the Adirondack Mountains of northern New York state. After college she spent some time traveling, hiking, and playing music in Ireland. Upon returning, she moved to Boston to focus on music. She co-founded the contra dance trio, Anadama, and is the guitarist for VT-based fiddler/singer Lissa Schneckenburger. She’s toured across the US, Canada, Sweden, Denmark, Belgium, and Germany. Bethany moved to Maine in 2013 and has been enjoying the Portland session scene as well as keeping in rotation in the New England contra dance circuit.