Shetland Fiddlers' Society

Shetland Fiddlers' Society

Shetland Fiddlers’ Society, the ‘oldest’ performer in the Folk Festival, is one of the few still-active participants from the first 1981 festival.

The group, formed by Tom Anderson to perform at the Shetland Hamefarin’ in 1960, was nicknamed ‘Da Forty Fiddlers’ by Magnus Magnusson, because they had 40 musicians - 39 male and 1 female.

Since then the Society has faithfully upheld Shetland’s fiddle tradition, encouraging participation by young and old alike, including numerous younger fiddlers now renowned in their own right.

Adhering firmly to the melodies and playing style that give the tradition its unique and distinct idiom, the Society is still thriving strong 60 years later.

They frequently collaborate with Shetland Folk Dance group, which shares this traditional philosophy.  Their 9th CD “Da Reel Thing” of 2014 featured the dancers and in July 2017 both groups went to Norway for a joint tour.  

Since 2015, Shetland Fiddlers’ Society group have had several musical trips to Orkney & John O’Groats, with 2018 July appearance in Aberdeen’s North Atlantic Fiddle Convention (NafCo) and the Portsoy Boat Festival in June 2019.

We are delighted to help celebrate Shetland Fiddlers Society's 60th year as we celebrate our 40th!   They will appear at the Shetland Museum and Archives auditorium on the Saturday afternoon, as they launch a special exhibition.