This year’s Fergus Scottish Festival and Highland Games presents an exciting line-up of musical acts all weekend long. From foot-stomping drumming, to soulful singing, to bagpipes with attitude — there’s music for everyone!
Celtic Music & Entertainment
There’s plenty of activity happening all weekend long! Here are some highlights:
- Our annual Tattooed in Tradition will be emceed by Gillebride MacMillan, a Gaelic singer, scholar, and poet. This event promises to be a spectacle of Pipe Bands and Marching ensembles, and Scottish-themed performances. We are excited to kick off our Festival weekend with the rallying of the Clans and a moving tribute to the Homeland.
- We are also thrilled to announce the return of the Red Hot Chilli Pipers. Known for bagpipes with attitude, drums with a Scottish accent, and a show so hot it carries its own health warning. The Red Hot Chilli Pipers’ offer a groundbreaking fusion of traditional Scottish music and rock/pop anthems.
- Opening Ceremonies at noon. Following the kick-off, the day is filled with competitions for Heavies and Pipes and Drums. We have lots of bleacher seating, but we do encourage you to BYOL (bring your own lawn chair) for an even better seat!
- Our annual downtown Ferguson Celtic Traditions concert. This intimate event honours the musical heritage of Scotland with the performance of traditional songs. This year, we will feature a variety of artists who will collaborate to perform songs from all over the world.
- NEW this year: Hometown Reunion concert. Held at the Highland Pub beer tent, some of Fergus’s own popular, local bands will play a mix of high-energy favourites to a rousing crowd of good friends, old and new! Catch up with people you’ve lost touch with over the years, or find out what you’ve been missing, and enjoy this playback from wayback event!!!
Sunday All Day
- Sunday is dedicated to Family Day with tons of activities and performances for kids of all ages. There will lots of music throughout the Festival grounds!
All Weekend Long
- Celebrate Scottish culture at the Fergus Scottish Festival’s authentic pub, brimming with exceptional Celtic music, tasty drinks, and fine friends.
- The Highland Pub is the place to check out some of the Festival’s hottest Celtic rock groups. Open all weekend, the music plays day and night. Whether you’re looking to enjoy some afternoon music, or take in an opportunity to hear the best musicians in Celtic rock jam, come visit the onsite Highland Pub for an irresistible Scottish experience. You must be over 19 years of age to enter the Highland Pub. (Time is to be determined as to when minors cannot attend.)
Full Lineup of Musical Acts
We are still finalizing the schedule, but we’re too excited to wait to tell you who’s going to be performing! Here’s a partial listing with more acts still to be announced!
These fan favourites are returning to our Festival this year to share their incredible energy and talent! We can’t wait to hear their electric and soul-stirring combination of bagpipes, drums, vocals…and a didgeridoo!
Bob MacLean is an Event Guitarist, Celtic/Classical Guitarist & Folksinger with roots in Cape Breton (Glace Bay) and Quebec. He’s been playing guitar for as long as he can remember and his interest and passion for the guitar have only grown over the years.
David Leask will move you and groove you with traditional Celtic tunes, soulful roots-rock originals, and re-interpreted high-energy covers. His seamless combination of looping and effect pedals deliver an amazingly rich, big sound. And, with his Scottish sense of humour, he’s a force to be heckled with!
Gaelic is Gillebride’s first language, and Gaelic songs and traditions have always been an important part of his family life. Outlander fans will recognize Gillebrìde as Gwyllyn the Bard, where he regales those in Castle Leoch with traditional Gaelic songs and a song specially composed by Bear McCreary!
Red Hot Chilli Pipers
The Red Hot Chilli Pipers’ achievements have reached incredible heights with their groundbreaking fusion of traditional Scottish music and rock/pop anthems. But don’t just take our word for it…come down to our Tattoo’d in Tradition ceremony for some world-class bagrock!
Rhythmfoot is rhythm through music, dance, and soul. A pairing of drums and rhythmic step-dancing is the norm in the household of Frank and Chanda Leahy. Residing in Orangeville, Ontario, Chanda operates ‘Chanda’s School of Dance’ and Frank is the drummer in the band ‘Leahy’. With their love of music and dance, it was only natural to pass it down to their 6 children who carry on the tradition.
We have been so fortunate to welcome the amazing talents of Cape Breton’s Tommy Leadbeater for over 16 years! His captivating voice, his crystal clear tones, and his rich harmonics has earned him a reputation of being one of Nova Scotia’s finest vocalists.
Tony McManus is recognized throughout the world as the leading guitarist in Celtic music. Since early childhood, his twin obsessions of traditional music and acoustic guitar worked together to produce an original approach to this ancient art. In Tony’s hands, the complex ornamentation normally associated with fiddles and pipes are transferred to guitar in a way that preserves the integrity and emotional impact of the music.
Town Pants has headlined Roots and Celtic festivals and has sold out nights at rock venues for over a decade. The Town Pants brand of Celtic roots-rock-rebel is backed up with a legendary live show that’s garnered them fans internationally from New York to Norway.
Stay tuned for more details and more musical act announcements!