Wayne Fugate is one of the New York area's most versatile acoustic musicians. Making his musical home in the space in, around and between the American roots styles of bluegrass, blues, jazz, and old-time music, he can swing gracefully from these styles to any of his other musical loves, such as Classical, Gypsy jazz and Brazilian Choro music. His playing combines emotion and intellect with technical precision, and while he puts his own creative stamp on everything that he plays, the respect he has for tradition is readily apparent in his playing.
A founding member of the widely acclaimed eclectic string band Uncommon Ground, Wayne also performs and tours with Mandolin Madness, an ensemble featuring mandolin great Barry Mitterhoff, and The New York Mandolin Ensemble, one of the country’s premiere chamber orchestra groups using instruments of the Mandolin and Lute families (Mandolins, Mandola, Mando-Cello, Guitar and Bass).
In demand as 'first-call' freelance artist, some of Wayne's other performing credits include stage work with Tony Trischka, Hazel Dickens, Barry Mitterhoff, Kenny Kosek, Walt Michael & Co., Jay Ungar & Molly Mason, Grammy Award winner Lisa Gutkin, and banjo legend Bill Keith.
Wayne has performed on two continents at noteworthy venues that include Carnegie Hall's Isaac Stern Auditorium and Weill Recital Hall, Symphony Space, The Great Hall at Edinburgh Castle, West Point, SPAC and The Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts. He can be heard on the soundtracks of the Emmy-nominated film Home and Louis B. Mayer's award-winning short film, Respects. He was also frequently heard (and seen) on Broadway playing mandolin and guitar on Steve Martin and Edie Brikell's five-time Tony-nominated musical Bright Star.
Wayne has studied (and performed) with two of the world's mandolin greats, Barry Mitterhoff and Mike Marshall. He continues his musical education with private instruction and has attended several continuing education programs at Boston's Berklee College of Music. He is active as a mandolin teacher, offering both private instruction and workshops given annually at prominent festivals and music camps throughout the Northeast. Wayne is the author of two (soon to be three) instructional and tune books for mandolin, available through Alfred Publishing and Mel Bay.
Wayne makes his home in New York's Hudson Valley. He is married to a tremendously talented actress, has three incredibly wonderful and beyond amazing kids, is the proud human "parent" to a cat named Miles, and is not-so-secretly obsessed with technology and gadgets of all kinds.
I teach students at all levels, from complete beginners just getting started to advanced students looking to expand their skills and musical horizons. I strive to provide an alternative to the cookie-cutter approach found in many method books, academic music programs, and internet instructional resources. In doing so, I work with each student to create a unique course of study that carefully considers who they are, what musical goals and interests they have, how they learn, and whatever unique challenges that may arise during the learning process.
I try to make the lessons as "self-guided" as possible (you tell me where you want to focus and what material you are interested in), while still getting across the technique and concepts that will help to take your musicianship to the "next level". I have found that this approach helps to make the lessons immediately more relevant ... and fun!