CUTTER BOAT SETS SAIL TO SING! – Scotch Whisky News

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Niven Miller

CUTTER BOAT SETS SAIL TO SING!

The Murray McDavid, a cutter boat built in 1954, is setting out on the first ever singing voyage, taking opera ‘doon the watter’, to the marinas down the Clyde.

Interestingly, the boat already has a remarkable link with singing. It was built by the father of Scottish singer Niven Miller, famous in the 1950s for his operatic style.

This June, as part of Scottish Opera’s Pop-Up Tour, songs from Pirates of Penzance and Bubble McBea will be performed on board the beautifully restored Murray McDavid. Children and members of the public will be given the chance to enjoy opera on the water.The Murray McDavid on the Clyde

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The boat is owned by the independent scotch whisky company Murray McDavid. Its Managing Director, Edward Odim, is delighted to be supporting Scottish Opera’s Pop-Up Tour: ‘It’s very exciting to work with Scottish Opera and to be part of such an innovative project. I fell in love with opera when I was young and it means a great deal to me to help bring opera to others, especially children.’

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The Murray McDavid

For more information, contact:Eilidh.Clark@scottishopera.org.uk

www.scottishopera.org.uk

Alexandra.Roberts@aceo.co.uk www.murray-mcdavid.com

Tel: 01452 762024 Mob: 07919 037335 

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History of the Murray McDavid

The Murray McDavid (aka ‘NewCraig’) was built in St Monans, Fife in 1954 by shipbuilders James N. Miller & Sons Limited; a family run business established 270 years ago. In the 50s, the company was run by brothers Tom and Willie Miller. Willie’s son, Niven, like his father before him, served as an apprentice boat engineer in Glasgow. However, he gave up boat building for a life as a singer and went on to find fame as a singer of traditional Scottish songs, receiving worldwide acclaim.

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he Murray McDavid began life as a pilot boat transporting mariners (pilots) to and from ships in the open sea. The pilot’s job was to guide and manoeuvre larger ships through the shallow waters of the busy harbour of Dundee. As such, the Murray McDavid needed to be able to withstand heavy seas and bumping against the much bigger vessels she worked alongside. 

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Renovation

Fast forward 60 years, and the boat has been acquired by the Murray McDavid company, fully renovated and given a new lease of life. It has been nearly seven years since the advert for the sale of the ‘NewCraig’ first caught the attention of Edward, who had always dreamed of restoring an old boat. Since buying the boat in 2010, it’s taken a team of four, five years to lovingly restore the boat. 

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The Murray McDavid in Dundee Harbour in 1954

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