To view each performer's own website, click on their name.

Ralph Shaw

Ralph Shaw is a showman with a style inspired by British Music Hall and a witty raconteur with an infectious joy of performing. And as a gifted songwriter Ralph Shaw’s songs bring characters and situations to life with brilliant word play. Whether he’s singing about a village vicar, a brothel handyman or embodying an evil cat, his hilarious and sometimes tender songs thrill audiences with music and laughter. As well as traveling to entertain audiences at international festivals and ukulele clubs he also leads a monthly get-together of 140+ ukulele strummers in his home town of Vancouver, Canada. In 2013 he released two new albums called Love and Laughter.
Ralph’s ukulele workshops are a tour de force, helping new and experienced players get to grips with their instrument and performance technique. With a catalog of five solo albums, 4 teaching DVDs and two acclaimed books, Ralph Shaw has played a crucial role in creating the current ukulele boom. 


Chalmers Doane 

Chalmers Doane began his musical journey in Truro, where he won the prize for Outstanding Performance of the Music Festival, in 1946.  

His interest in teaching eventually led him to the NS Normal College where he came under the influence of the dynamic music educator, Catherine Allison.  Further study ensued at Boston University, where he majored in trombone, under Koko Kahila, and minored in string methods, working closely with Dr. George Bornoff.

As director of music education for the city of Halifax, he created a comprehensive music program designed to produce students who were musically literate by the end of grade six.   In addition, opportunities were created for every child to have an instrumental and choral experience in every school.  The music department boasted dozens of choirs, wind and string groups,  a class piano program, and the senior ensembles included a jazz band, symphony orchestra, pops orchestra, concert band, percussion ensemble and honour choir.  In addition, there was a thriving adult education program with as many as a thousand students attending weekly classes.   The use of the ukulele as an educational tool was one of the innovative aspects of the program that captured public attention, and which became the basis of a country-wide program.    

The last ten years of Chalmers' career were spent as professor of music education at the NS Teachers College.   In recent years, his influence on music education in Canada has been recognized by The Learning Partnership, an honorary doctorate from Saint Mary's University and membership in the Order of Canada.   Now retired, he is still pursuing his lifelong joy:  making music with his friends.



Mike Diabo

Mike Diabo has laid claim to the title of Ukulele Surf King (uke virtuoso was already taken, phew). A founding member of the instro-Mental surf trio Urban Surf Kings, Mike has made it his mission to bring surf music to the masses through guitar and ukulele. Whatever it takes. He is also a successful solo artist, movie/tv composer, producer, and has toured the world with several artists including the Rev Hank Trio (uke group), Urban Surf Kings, and Wadadli Riders. In 2008, Mike founded the Halifax Uke Gang (H.U.G.) to allow all ukers, regardless of ability, to get together once a month to play. It boasts at least 50 members.
Mike has been teaching music for over 25 years (and playing for much longer).  He has his BA in Jazz from St. FX University (1988), a Music Education Diploma from Dalhousie University (1991), and a Masters of Education from Mt. St. Vincent University (2003).

Sandra Obritsch

For over forty years Sandra Obritsch has been introducing children and adults to the wonderful world of ukulele and the joy of singing.  She has done this in Halifax, Berwick, Kentville, Bridgewater, Liverpool and points in between.  What a wonderful gift she has given to those who have been lucky enough to have her as a teacher.
Sandra was a driving force in organizing the first International Ukulele Ceilidh in 2005.  This festival attracted professional and novice ukulele players from all over the world and exposed Sandra’s students to outstanding skilled players through the workshops and concerts offered at the Ceilidh.  This festival has become a biennial event that many people look forward to attending.
In 2013 Sandra was inducted as the newest member of the Ukulele Hall of Fame of Nova Scotia.

South Shore Ukulele Players
Under the direction of Sandra Obritsch
The South Shore Ukulele Players started as a ukulele class for seniors being offered by music teacher, Sandra Obritsch, in the fall of 2002.  Since that time, over 200 people have learned to play the ukulele in her classes along the south shore.  Each year new students move up to the band increasing its numbers to over 30 players at any one time.
It was this group of enthusiastic players that organized the First International Ukulele Ceilidh that took place in Liverpool in 2005; and, they have been instrumental in bringing ukulele players and their families from around the world to visit our south shore.
Members of the South Shore Ukulele Players have always loved music; but, they have discovered how much more exciting it is to play the music they love on the ukulele.  Their selections reflect their varying interests from ragtime, big band, Rock ‘n Roll, Hawaiian, country and bluegrass to gospel.
The players have performed for large national organizations during the past eleven years. However, their greatest joy has been sharing their music with others, giving volunteer performances for nursing homes, churches and fundraising events from Halifax to Liverpool and Berwick, performing up to 50 concerts a year.