A Bit of History
It was a beautiful sunny day on August 7th, 1957 when parishioners made the pilgrimage to St. Margaret of Scotland Church to celebrate its 100th year. As with any celebration there was much food, music, and merrymaking. At 8:00 pm, the concert – organized by Alex Angus (John A.) MacDonald, Mrs. Archie (Katie Florence) Kennedy, Alex John MacIsaac, and Lauchie Dan N. MacLellan – was underway. Thus began a powerful tradition that would yearly transform the grounds of the church into a hub of Scottish culture with music, dancing, laughter, and love coalescing to create a beautiful atmosphere that keeps everyone coming back year after year.
That humble concert in 1957 set the stage for what would come to be considered “The Grand-Daddy of Scottish Concerts.” Today the Broad Cove Concert continues to produce superior quality, featuring the finest of traditional Celtic performers.
The success of this concert is due to the devotion of volunteers from the communities which make up the parish as well as the artists, performers, and the musicians whose talent has been a beacon of talent and culture.
The Broad Cove area has been a backyard to such notables as Angus L. MacDonald and Allistar MacLeod, and more recently the “Inverness Chase the Ace” phenomenon and the internationally known Cabot Links/Cabot Cliffs Golf Courses, all of which are on our doorstep. Today we bring your attention to one of the best long-standing cultural events in the province, the Annual Broad Cove Scottish Concert.
Our concert has been featured in productions by the CBC, BBC as well as private agencies. The Smithsonian Institute has used portions of our concert in a production related to Celtic music. As it is a variety concert comprised of fiddlers, dancers, vocalists, pipers, guitarists and pianists, we appeal to a broad audience. Its longevity can be attributed to its broad appeal, quality of performers and the dedication of volunteers.
Performances have included such recognizable artists as Natalie MacMaster, the Lahey Family, Buddy MacMaster, Ashley MacIsaac, Bara MacNeils, and The Rankins, to name but a very few. A spot on our program remains a much sought after gig. Our goal each year is to produce a concert featuring both established performers and up-and-coming artists. The quality of the performers is solid from start to finish. Our venue has always provided an excellent platform for aspiring performers. As an audience, the main distraction from the stage may be the spectacular view and sunset.
The Broad Cove Scottish Concert feels a sense of pride in having played a small part in the rebirth, popularity and promotion of Celtic music and tradition over the past many years. We believe we provide an exceptional venue to expose talent to a large audience.
The concert has a significant impact on the Village of Inverness and surrounding areas as many plan their holiday around our event. Tourism and hospitality operations mainly benefit, but all local businesses share in the spin-offs from site preparation to vacationer’s needs.