Telling Stories Through Songs with Sarah McQuaid

What is it in a story – whether it be a fairytale, a historical event or a recent news item – that makes it worthy of a song?

A strong image? A phrase that resonates? An added layer of metaphorical meaning? Is there a message we’re trying to deliver? What are the elements (chronological, geographical, thematic) of the story and how will they determine the structure of the song we write? Does the story have a climax? A repetitive theme? A dramatic twist? Who tells the story? How do we turn a straightforward narrative into poetic lyrics that the listener will remember and want to hear again and again?

Sarah McQuaid has presented guitar, songwriting and music business workshops at music schools, festivals, arts centres, private homes and other venues in the UK, Ireland, the USA, Netherlands and Germany. She has also given presentations and workshops at primary and secondary schools in the UK, Ireland and USA. Below are descriptions of some of her most popular workshops and school presentations, followed by comments from attendees and letters of recommendation from school staff.

Thanks to our sponsors!

Interested in supporting the Sherbino? Sponsors make it happen.

Town of Ridgway
Telluride Foundation
Colorado Creative Industries
Ouray County Community Foundation Fund
Western Colorado Community Foundation
Ouray County Performing Arts Guild
Alpine Bank
Tri-State Generation & Transmission
Alpenglow Arts Alliance
Women's Club of Ouray

A history of community

Established in 1915, the Sherbino has been the heart of Ridgway Colorado, providing a venue for community events ranging from music to poetry. Now in a period of re-birth, the Sherbino continues to standout as the hub of events and community activities in Ridgway and throughout Ouray County. On February 11 2012 the Sherbino incorporated as the Ridgway Chautauqua Society Inc. whose mission is to embody the Chautauqua tradition by producing programs celebrating lifelong learning, the arts, culture and community. Learn more about the Sherbino.

Heart of Ridgway

Sherbino Ridgway Colorado

604 Clinton Street

P.O. Box 236

Ridgway, Colorado 81432


Alpenglow Arts Alliance