Biggar Music Club's inaugural concert took place in the town's Municipal Hall on Wednesday 13 January 1960. At the piano was Agnes Walker, accompanying Tryphena Nixon (contralto), and tickets cost 3/6d. At a preliminary meeting of 'invited music lovers' in September 1959, called to consider the formation of a music club, one gentleman had "shown himself possessed of little hope that the proposed venture would be a success", so the persevering enthusiasts must have been delighted by the sale of 155 tickets. Agnes Walker's own piano was brought from nearby Symington for the occasion - the round trip, plus its "dismemberment and reconstruction" under the skilled eye of a piano tuner cost three guineas.
The first piano owned by the Club was a Steinway grand, bought in March 1960 for £20 "from a lonely cottage near Turnhouse, Edinburgh, where the piano owner lived under the shadow of eviction". Club committee member Mr. Herd who had been authorised to purchase the instrument, was appointed 'Custodian of the Piano'. Alas, within two years it transpired that this piano was not up to the standard required by visiting musicians and a rebuilt Steinway was bought from Steinway in London, and ceremoniously unlocked by Iris Loveridge before her recital on 26 October 1964. The Club's guest pianists have been playing on that same Steinway ever since, and glowing compliments in the Visitors' Book testify to its outstanding tone.
More than fifty years since that very first recital, Biggar Music continues to bring world-class performers and a wide range of music to Biggar, enriching the cultural life of the town and surrounding villages in South Lanarkshire. For details of this season's concerts go to our Programme page.
BMC Committee Members
Mike Chad (Chairman)
Margaret Filshie (Secretary)
John Colles (Treasurer)