Christen Blanton

Christen Blanton is the director of the UNCG Old-Time Ensemble, and the Program Coordinator of the Lillian Rauch Beginning Strings Program. She holds degrees from the Crane School of Music at SUNY Potsdam (BM, music education) and the University of North Carolina at Greensboro (MM, viola performance & PhD, music education). A prize-winning fiddler and ballad singer, Christen has combined her love of teaching music and fiddling through providing clinics and research to students and school music teachers, most notably at the American String Teachers Association National Conference (2014, 2016, 2017), the North Carolina Music Educators Association State Conference (2014, 2016), the Southeast Honors Strings Festival (2010, 2014, 2015, 2017), the International Bluegrass Music Association Conference (2015), the North Atlantic Fiddle Convention (2015), and the International Society for Music Education Conference (2016). Christen performs regularly with the old-time string band The Zinc Kings. The group has received top prizes at the Fiddler’s Grove Old-Time Fiddlers and Bluegrass Festival, the Hoppin’ John Old-Time and Bluegrass Fiddler’s Convention, the Charlie Poole Music Festival, the Happy Valley Fiddlers Convention, and the Union Grove Fiddlers Convention. In addition, The Zinc Kings have been featured performers with the Beaufort County Traditional Music Association, Winston-Salem Fiddle and Bow Society, Triad Arts Up Close, North Carolina State University Summer Stock Theater, Raleigh Little Theatre and Bare Theatre, The Charlie Poole Music Festival, Pickin’ at the Rock, and the Folk Alliance International Conference.