Who are we?
What is a Hurdy-Gurdy?
The modern instrument is credited as a French instrument, but different variations of the hurdy-gurdy have existed in multiple cultures across Europe.
The hurdy-gurdy and greater instrument family are defined by having a wheel rubbing the strings similar to a violin bow, as well as a keyboard simulating the finger fretting of a violin/guitar. Most models have drone strings, similar to a bagpipe, as well as an accented buzz sound unique to the hurdy-gurdy.
The hurdy-gurdy was a popular court instrument in France during the 17/18th century. Since the 1970s, it has been gaining popularity in Europe and now the US.
What is GurdyWorld?
Information on the hurdy-gurdy can be sparse online. In August of 2022, Noelle Beaudin began working on a new hurdy-gurdy resource website – recognizing the need for a single, organized place for information on such a niche instrument. During early development, Noelle connected with Max Enloe – who had also realized the need for a single organized resource. Max had been working on a spreadsheet that compiled a list of makers with contact info, tutorials, plans, workshops, and sheet music. Realizing that Noelle had a website, while Max had all the content, they combined their efforts to make the first version of GurdyWorld.
Since then Max and Noelle have continued to develop the website, teach online classes and private lessons, as well as run a yearly US-based in person workshop located in New Hampshire. GurdyWorld’s mission is to bring hurdy-gurdy players in the US, and around the world, together, including a partnership with Associació Violes de Roda de Catalunya in Spain, another hurdy-gurdy educational-based organization.
What do we offer your organization?
If your organization would like us to perform or be a part of an event, we offer a few entertaining activities for an audience. Anything from short performances to longer panels and booths! All of what we do can be geared for children and families too!
We will play a variety of genres, from medieval to traditional to modern music. Both solos and duets. For a modern concert, this can also include the addition of a piano and violin. Concerts can last anywhere from 30 minutes to 1.5 hours and can be tailored to meet your venue or organization’s needs.
We will give a comprehensive history lesson on the hurdy-gurdy, spanning over 1000 years of history. This can be just a talk, or alongside a powerpoint if a projector or TV are provided.
Show & tell
A lesson in the mechanical functionality of the hurdy-gurdy. How they work, differences between models, and additional mechanical information on the instrument.
Audience instrument try
We have a few models of hurdy-gurdies that the audience are welcome to put their hands on and give ‘em a crank! We will talk through each individual to make sure they get a fun experience!
Sound Samples and Videos
The GurdyWorld Team
For many years Noelle Beaudin worked as a composer in Boston, Massachusetts and taught composition, music theory, and performance in the greater Boston area. She attended The Boston Conservatory of Music majoring in conducting, music composition and piano performance. Noelle is a member of the MTNA and National Guild of Music Teachers.
Over the last twenty years, she has worked for several private schools, the Upper Valley Music Center and the New Hampshire Independent School of Music where she conducted chamber ensembles, orchestras, folk groups, and piano ensembles as well as teaching courses on music history, theory, and composition. She currently teaches from her studio in Sandwich, and is the choral director for the Unitarian Universalist Society of Laconia. A fun and charismatic teacher, she has a special ability to understand issues a student or ensemble group may have and be able to clearly explain the best way to work through that problem.
She regularly performs throughout the New England area as a soloist or accompanist and has performed many solo Hurdy Gurdy shows at notable venues throughout New England.
For the past 3 years, Max Enloe has immersed himself in the world of the hurdy-gurdy, focusing not only on music, but also on understanding its mechanics. Having learned much from experts such as Scott Gayman and Sergio González, Max has developed a keen sense for the instrument’s nuances.
An active contributor to the hurdy-gurdy community, Max shares his many insights and experiences, including a monthly online workshop and in person repair sessions. Whether playing tunes, teaching, or fine-tuning instrument mechanics, Max Enloe is a dedicated hurdy-gurdy enthusiast and instructor.
He has a passion for sharing his knowledge to help others. And never misses an opportunity to help an enthusiastic player!
Have any questions? Contact us.