Marjorie McCarthy Cairns
WCCC pianist for many years
Our talented pianist, Marjorie McCarthy- Cairns, was born and raised in Winnipeg, MB. She started piano lessons at the age of 11 and also loved to sing, so vocal lessons were added to her musical training.
You may be surprised to learn that petite Marjorie also studied the pipe organ and subsequently played at the Anglican Cathedral and other churches here in Calgary. She and her first husband moved to Alberta after he accepted a position as an Agricultural Advisor with a large financial firm. Marjorie found playing the organ a lot of fun and loved the wonderful sound the instrument produced.
An active member of Holy Cross Anglican Church, Marjorie was the organist there for 15 years, directed the adult choir and also started a children’s choir. She still enjoys singing with the adult choir to this day.
Marjorie worked as a Music Librarian in the University of Calgary’s Music Department for 25 years. She enjoyed serving the students and being a part of their progress in the field of music. Many life-long friendships were formed during this time between Marjorie and her musical colleagues.
Her voice teacher, a former singer with the Metropolitan Opera, encouraged Marjorie to join the Calgary Opera Chorus and she sang with them for 25 years. As well, she was a member of the Calgary Philharmonic Chorus and the Festival Chorus. At present, she enjoys singing with The Westside Singers, a group of seniors who perform at retirement centres around the city.
When Marjorie retired from the University of Calgary, she began volunteering at the Kerby Centre, playing piano in the dining room and assisting with several other committees, one of them being the ‘Travel Committee’. She led several trips abroad and on one of them, a Caribbean cruise, she met her second husband, Bruce Cairns. Together they travelled the world…Greece, Egypt and Africa to name a few destinations. Her favorite trip was a river cruise from St.Petersburg to Moscow, Russia.
Dennis McCarthy, Marjorie’s first husband, played football for the University of Saskatchewan which led Marjorie to develop a keen interest in football, hockey and baseball. Watching the Calgary Stampeders, the Calgary Flames and the Toronto Blue Jays fuels her passion for sports.
Marjorie loves people and being involved which is one of the reasons she joined The Women’s Canadian Club of Calgary. A decade ago, one of her girlfriends invited her to attend a luncheon and Marjorie immediately took a liking to everything the club had to offer – the food, the speakers, the history – she felt an instant connection, serving on the Board for several years.
When asked if a favorite speaker came to mind, Marjorie replied, “ALL of the speakers have been very good. I always come away with a good deal of new information. I am a happy and satisfied WCC member!”
Marjorie has one daughter who lives in Calgary and works for a large insurance company. When Marjorie married Bruce Cairns, she ‘inherited’ 5 adult children and 8 grand-children who have been a wonderful addition to her life. Bruce passed away this summer, after 15 happy years of married life.
Reading fills up the small bits of free time in Marjorie’s life, when she isn’t singing, playing the piano, watching her sports teams and spending time with family. She is a very busy lady and we are so grateful she is willing to share her time and talents with our organization.