“World folk and fiddle music group Fiddlehead Soup is an energetic collection of musicians as engaging as they are talented—they start with a haunting Celtic, medieval groove based around native Scotsman Doug Hendry’s open tuned 12 string guitar and warm tenor voice, then they weave it into a gypsy tapestry with mother and daughter Glenna Hunter and Ursa Meyer’s twinned fiddles and voices.
Singing songs from the traditions of multiple countries and in multiple languages as well as their own artfully constructed material, Fiddlehead Soup does an incredible job of making the difficult look not only effortless, but fun!”
The acoustic trio
(Violin, 'cello, vocals)
Born into a musical family, Glenna inherited her love of celtic music from her dad, pianist and tipper maker Jim Hunter, and studied fiddle with the incomparable Denis Lanctôt. Singing on stage with Stan Rogers at age 4 was Glenna’s introduction to the world of performing. While earning her degree in Psychology, Glenna enjoyed playing in an Early music ensemble. Once her daughter, Ursa, was old enough to hold a fiddle, the mother and daughter duo returned to celtic roots, becoming founding members of the Maplewood Ceilidh Band. As well as adding ‘cello to her list of accomplishments, Glenna has embraced the challenge of learning new languages and time signatures with Fiddlehead Soup, getting what most mothers can only dream of: sharing genuine quality time with her daughter, doing something they both love.
(Violin, viola, piano, vocals)
Ursa brings her youthful vitality and considerable musical prowess to the stage. She is equally at ease burning through blistering reels on the fiddle, blending in with vocal harmonies, or playing backup on the keyboard. Although young, she is already very familiar with the stage, having performed since the age of nine in a wide variety of genres, from classical to Celtic to Klezmer. She has performed with Stellae Boreales, the Maplewood Ceilidh Band, the Cadenza String Quartet and was the principal violist with the Ottawa Youth Orchestra. Ursa was selected to take part in the National Arts Centre Young Artist Program. She graduated from Canterbury High School, where she was in the Arts Canterbury string program. She is now attending Ottawa University studying Performance Viola and has been Principal Violist of the Ottawa Pops Orchestra. As well as performing with Fiddlehead Soup, of course!
(12-string guitar, cittern, vocals)
Since the age of four Doug has been drawn to entertaining crowds with his musical talent, beginning by singing with a choir in his native Scotland. As a teenager, the 12 string guitar beckoned and he made his way playing street corners and folk clubs throughout Britain and Europe. Doug emigrated to Canada in 1991 and played regularly in various bands. Doug is now involved in numerous local folk and acoustic (and some not-so-acoustic) ensembles in Eastern Ontario and has been known to encourage total strangers to dance together by calling at renaissance and ceilidh dances. With his trademark Hagstrom 12-string guitar lending itself to diverse genres from folk to country to celtic and medieval music, the addition of the cittern to his musical repertoire blends perfectly with the international flavour and timeless scope of Fiddlehead Soup.
Fiddlehead Soup Band
Musician, technical wizard, all-round-good-person, we are delighted to have Ja contribute to our sound both in live performance and on recordings. His contributions include flute, percussion of all types, bass and frightfully witty repartee as well as several broken wrists.
Elizabeth's haunting folky voice adds a lovely texture to those live performances when we are lucky enough to have her join us.
Fiddlehead Soup and Friends
A talented fiddle player who has played with us off-and-on since our ceilidh band days, Shawn joins us on occasion to keep those reels a-rocking!
A fine pianist and maker of the famous Hunter Tipper, Jim also happens to be Glenna’s father and Ursa’s grandfather. He has performed live with Fiddlehead Soup and also appears on their second CD.
A former fellow student of Ursa’s, Anant is himself a fine violin player and has performed tabla with Fiddlehead Soup both in concert and on their first CD.
As well as being involved in a myriad of interesting projects, Stephen is a dedicated player of the kora and has contributed to Fiddlehead Soup’s second CD and performed live with them.
A purveyor of the stand-up bass, Jay adds a lovely bottom end to our live performances as well as fascinating anecdotes from his interesting life story so far.
Gary has played drums with us in several iterations of the band over the years.