Biography

“In the hands of Gillian Boucher, the violin becomes a vehicle of transportation for the mind… Her lyrical approach and sensitivity transcends genres and cultures, transporting listeners to far off exotic places accessible only in imagination.” – Glenn Meisner, CBC Radio

Recipient of the Nova Scotia Music Week Award in 2009 for Roots Traditional Recording of the Year and a 2010 East Coast Music Award Nomination in the same category, Cape Breton fiddler Gillian Boucher’s debut album Elemental, recorded by CBC Radio-Canada, received high acclaim and put her individual stamp on the world of Celtic music, seamlessly blending the music of her ancestors with eclectic sounds reflective of years of global adventure.

Originally from Inverness County, Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia, Gillian was born into a family steeped in traditional music and language. Highlights have included tours of Scotland, England, the Philippines, the USA, New Zealand, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, Turkey and Canada in duo collaborations or with her four-piece band. In 2011, the Gillian Boucher Band featured at the esteemed Celtic Connections Festival in Glasgow to rave reviews immediately followed by the Canadian Blast Tour of England and Wales. In 2012 she founded The Celtic Umbrella Ensemble – a busy act on the Canadian festival circuit. 2013 saw the release of her highly anticipated second album, Attuned; a step away from the more contemporary attributes of her first recording it displays the deep connection Gillian has with her Gaelic heritage and also her individualistic style, skill and command over traditional music. Demonstrating her diversity as an artist, Attuned received a 2014 Music Nova Scotia Award Nomination for Folk/Roots Recording of the Year as well a prestigious 2014 Canadian Folk Music Award Nomination for Instrumental Recording of the Year and a 2015 East Coast Music Award Nomination for Traditional Instrumental Recording of the Year.

In 2015 Gillian decided to divide her time between her home province of Nova Scotia and New Zealand, where she has quickly established herself as one of the country’s top Celtic musicians. As a duo with Scottish-based award-winning singer/songwriter Bob McNeill, they took NZ audiences by storm as a feature act at the 2015 Wellington Folk Festival and headlining performers at the 2016 Auckland Folk Festival.

In early 2016, Gillian Boucher and Canadian multi-instrumentalist and singer, Mary Beth Carty, embarked upon a sold-out 3-week tour of Austria, Switzerland and Italy as part of the Guiness Celtic Caravan Tour. Upcoming engagements include a guest performance at the National Celtic Folk Festival (Australia), KitchenFest (Canada), Semain Acadienne (France) as well as a CD release tour of New Zealand in November 2016 with Bob McNeill.

SOME CAREER HIGHLIGHTS…
  • Performer – Acadienne Semain, Saint Aubin sur Mer, FRANCE, 2016
  • Performer – The National Celtic Folk Festival, Geelong, AUSTRALIA, 2016
  • Celtic Caravan Tour – AUSTRIA, ITALY, SWITZERLAND, 2016
  • Headlining Performer – The Auckland Folk Festival, NEW ZEALAND, 2015
  • Performer – The Wellington Folk Festival, NEW ZEALAND, 2015
  • NOMINEE – East Coast Music Awards – Traditional Instrumental Recording of the Year, 2015
  • NOMINEE – Canadian Folk Music Award – Instrumental Album of the Year, 2014
  • NOMINEE – NSMW – Roots/Trad Recording of the Year, 2014
  • Holland America Guest Entertainer, CANADA, 2014
  • Norwegian Cruise Lines Entertainer, USA & CANADA, 2012-2014
  • CD Release – Attuned, 2013
  • Performer – Celtic Colours International Festival, CANADA, 1998-2014
  • Founder and manager – The Celtic Umbrella Ensemble, 2012
  • Launch of ‘Learn Celtic Fiddle’ – comprehensive on-line fiddle school, 2012
  • Instructor & Performer – Salmon Arm Roots & Blues Festival, CANADA, 2011
  • ‘Home Routes’ Tour of Altantic Canada, 2011
  • CANADA BLAST TOUR, ENGLAND, 2011
  • Performer – Celtic Connections Festival, SCOTLAND, 2011
  • TOM FUN ORCHESTRA TOUR, CANADA, 2011
  • Performer, Canadian Ambassador’s Canada Day Celebrations, TURKEY, 2010
  • NOMINEE – East Coast Music Award – Roots / Trad Recording of the Year, 2010
  • AWARD WINNER – NSMW – Roots / Trad Recording of the Year, 2009
  • CD Release – Elemental (CBC), 2008
  • Instructor – Long & McQuade Music Education Centre, CANADA, 2009-2010
  • Andrew White Tour, NEW ZEALAND, 2001, 2003, 2006, 2008
  • Mary Jane Lamond Band tour, USA 2007
  • Performer – British Ambassador in Manila, PHILIPPINES, 2007
  • Performer – BRAVO & VISION Television’s Celtic Angels At Christmas TV special, CANADA, 2006
  • Resident Musician – Grey Coast Theatre Company, production: Farm Land, SCOTLAND, 2002
  • Performer – BBC Scotland’s TACSI TV programme, SCOTLAND 2001
  • Instructor – Edinburgh Adult Learning Project, SCOTLAND, 2001
  • Instructor – Glasgow Fiddle Workshops Series, SCOTLAND, 2001
  • Guest artist – Heat the Hoose Volume 2, SCOTLAND, 2000
  • Performer, The Kennedy Centre, Washington, D.C., USA, 1998
  • Performer, Washington Irish Folk Festival, MD, USA, 1996-1998