Over the past decade, she’s become a fiddling phenomenon and a Celtic step dance sensation. But Ivonne Hernandez, 23, still has her feet planted firmly on the ground.
“I’m actually painfully shy but on stage that all goes away. I’ve always just set myself goals and go for them. I take pride in every show I do and in all the competitions I’ve been in.”
As her musicians set up for a performance Tuesday morning at Harwin Elementary school one of several local schools she visited leading up to her Thursday night performance at Artspace Hernandez gave an insight into her life.
She’s been touring a lot since November. The pace is gruelling and she has to remain focused, she said. “You meet a lot of people travelling around and performing like I do. And there is lots of opportunity to go out and have a good time but I have to be disciplined. I have to take care of myself and spend time practising my instrument.”
Hernandez also has to keep physically fit for her lively performances.
“It’s a full aerobic workout for me on stage, that’s for sure,” she laughed.
Indeed, she is a dynamo on stage, a performer who gets her audience, young and old, wildly hand clapping and toe tapping. Her step dancing is fast paced and she does acrobatics with her violin, fiddling above her head and behind her back. “Pretty impressive, isn’t it?” she joked Tuesday over applause from her school audience.
The Victoria based artist is presently working on a new CD. “My third CD is called In Time. We’ll be recording it in the studio back home.”
Hernandez began training in classical violin when she was just three years old. She later discovered her love for fiddling and at 13 won the BC Provincial Fiddle Championship. By age 20, she was a national champion.
“Every place I go inspires me in different directions, both in my life and in my music. Maybe it’s about adding something different to my performance or writing a new song but there is always something new.”