Session/Séance 5k: CSTM Film Series 2, Doug MacPhee and Cape Breton’s Celtic Piano Style (2016)

Session/Séance 5k: CSTM Film Series 2. Friday/vendredi 26 May 2017. 12:15PM-1:15PM, EJB 224.
      Chair: MEGHAN FORSYTH (Memorial University of Newfoundland)
Doug MacPhee and Cape Breton’s Celtic Piano Style (2016)
     Chris McDonald / Richard McKinnon, Cape Breton University

Written and Directed by Chris McDonald and Richard MacKinnon
Produced by Chris McDonald, Richard MacKinnon and Darcy Campbell

Scholars, musicians, and writers from a number of backgrounds have tried to describe what gives Cape Breton’s fiddle style its distinct flavour. There is no doubt that the fiddlers’ rhythms, timing, ornamentation, attack on the bow, and other violinistic details are key to that sound. But there are many who have commented also on the piano accompaniment style of Cape Breton as something that has contributed to the character of the fiddle and dance music of the island. This film draws together interviews with some leading Cape Breton pianists and fiddlers to explain the style’s origins, characteristics and influence on the traditional scene in the Maritimes. Doug MacPhee of New Waterford is profiled as a pianist who developed an elaborate solo style, performing the fiddle melodies in the right hand while performing full accompaniments with his left. During the film, MacPhee shares his deep knowledge of the tradition and its history.


MusCan Office

MusCan is led by a committed community of volunteers from across Canada. You can contact our secretariat by mail, phone, or email.

10 Morrow Avenue, Suite 202
Toronto, ON
M6R 2J1
office [AT]