The Fiddleheads are celebrating their 25th anniversary with a special Tribute to Northern Fiddling Concert on May 2 at MacBride Museum.
Founded in 1998 by Trish Barclay, the Fiddleheads create original theatre productions, organize barn dances, host jams, work with youth fiddle groups across the territory and collaborate with fiddle ensembles from Western Canada.
On May 2, the group will be celebrating its 25th anniversary with a special Tribute to Northern Fiddling Concert on May 2 at MacBride Museum. The concert will honour well-known Northern fiddlers Joe Loutchan, Rusty Reid, Gerald Edzerza, Allan Benjamin, Andrea Bettger (NWT), Gina Burgess (Nunavut) and Emilyn Stam (Northern BC). Some of these musicians have recently passed, and the concert will serve to honour their memories.
“It’s hard to believe that it’s been 25 years that The Fiddleheads have been in the community,” says Fiddleheads Artistic Director Keitha Clark, who is a longtime fiddle player herself. “There are a lot of great memories with all the youth musicians who have come through the program, as well as the instructors and families who have been part of our community.”
The show will also feature tune highlights from the Ensemble’s past 25 years of making music in the Yukon community and beyond. This includes arrangements and tunes learned from Trish Barclay, Gordon Stobbe, Keitha Clark, Sarah Hamilton, Calvin Vollrath, Trish Horrocks, Mark Sullivan, Daniel Lapp, Gabriel Dubreuil, The Valley Youth Fiddlers and Fiddleheads members Jack Walcher-Wegmann and Noé Kwan-Teau.
“We feel like a young, fun and vibrant organization, and to sit back and realize we’re 25 and we’ve had a lot of fiddlers go through our program, and those fiddlers are married and have kids, and some are teaching music out in the Yukon and beyond and building communities beyond The Fiddleheads is a pretty special thing,” adds Clark.
The Fiddleheads provide a first experience for many young Yukon musicians to develop their talents and expand their skills. Through the years, the group has performed everywhere from the Canada Winter Games to the Commissioner’s Christmas Party. Past shows include the Fiddle History of Canada, a Fiddle History of Yukon Transportation, Music and Migration (fiddle tunes from around the world) and French- Canadian Fiddling.
“We’ve got some major plans in place for the next year we’re excited to share soon,” says Clark.
For their 20th anniversary, the Fiddleheads recorded their first album, A Yukon Fiddle Celebration, featuring tunes from the repertoires of traditional fiddlers from across the territory. The group has collaborated on performances and exchanges with the Nanaimo youth ensemble Fiddelium, and the Youth Valley Fiddlers from Smithers, BC. and represented the North at the West Coast Youth Fiddle Summit in 2019 & 2020.
“I think it’s going to be a lovely show,” says Clark. “The kids have worked really hard and I’m super proud of the music they’ve made this year. It’s really lovely to be able to honour all of our northern Yukon fiddlers for this show and our 25th anniversary.”
The Fiddleheads 25th Anniversary Concert takes place May 2 at MacBride Museum from 7-9 p.m., with doors opening at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are available at the door and are $20 for adults and $5 for youths under 16. To learn more, visit https://fiddleheadsyukon.com.