The primary design goal for TDC was to establish an identity for a music centre that would pay tribute to the history of Celtic music in Cape Breton. Located on the island’s Ceilidh trail, the centre’s unique design serves as a cultural landmark, as well as an entry portal for tourists and visitors entering the Cabot Trail.
The Trifos design team worked alongside museum designers in order to create a venue that would house numerous programming requirements. The Centre’s design included a gift shop, a musical performance space, a dining area, hospitality services, a museum exhibition space, research and archival area, as well as a recording studio. The centre also houses a fiddling school, Celtic music workshops, and musical demonstrations. The interior space, adorned with traditional detailing and Celtic motifs, was designed to create a home-like, Ceilidh kitchen atmosphere.
The Celtic Music Interpretive Centre’s initiative to preserve Celtic heritage and musical tradition is manifested in the architectural features of the building. Inspired by the work of architect William Critchlow Harris (1854-1913) and the gothic-style architecture of the town of Broughton, the design team felt that the typology of this era would be well suited for the goals of the Celtic Music Centre. Architectural devices such as verandas, round towers, and gambrel dormers are all cues of Cape Breton Celtic architectural vernacular.