Mitzie Collins,
White Dulcimer Christmas
(Sampler, 1996)

Mitzie Collins began playing the piano at age 5. She graduated from the Eastman School of Music with a degree in piano, but for the past 30 years she has been entertaining audiences with folk and Celtic music on her hammered dulcimer.

White Dulcimer Christmas is an album that was born as a result of Mitzie's musical musings while sitting at the Sampler Records merchandise table during various events. No musician can resist the temptation of an idle instrument while wiling away the time, and Mitzie is no exception.

Considered one of the nation's top hammered dulcimer players, this virtuoso takes you through a musical journey of the winter holidays. The 17 tracks on White Dulcimer Christmas make a collection of traditional songs of the season from around the world. Mitzie wanders from tune to tune as she weaves her way through the pieces improvising in a flawless flow.

Tracks include "White Christmas/Silent Night/Away in a Manger," "Lulajze Jezuniu," "Jingle Bells/Jolly Old St. Nicholas/Up on the Housetop," "Toyland/Parade of the Wooden Soldiers/The Teddy Bears' Picnic," "Hark the Herald Angels Sing" and "Christ Child's Lullaby."

The album is pure simplicity, just Mitzie and her hammered dulcimer. Close your eyes and it's as if you were sitting in the same room with her as she plays.

by Sherrill Fulghum
16 December 2006