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The Highland Games at Loon Mountain, New Hampshire, will be the time that Scott Bell leads the Grade 2 Rob Roy Pipe Band of Kingston, Ontario, into competition, deciding to hand over the role to long time member Ross Brown.
Since 1984 Bell has worked to build the Rob Roy organization into one of the world’s most successful teaching bands, producing dozens of pipers and drummers and making the small Kingston area one of the richest pools of piping talent in North America.
According to sources, Bell will play with the organization, which currently comprises a Grade 2 and Grade 5 band, in occasional shows and parades. Scott Bell is a member of the Grade 1 Peel Regional Police Pipe Band.
Ross Brown is a veteran of the Ontario scene and a former member of the Grade 1 78th Fraser Highlanders, including when the band won the 1987 World Pipe Band Championship.
“It’s been a wonderful experience working with the band over the last 28 years,” Bell said. “I am grateful to Hugh Goldie who gave me the opportunity to take over the band many years ago at a very young age and allowed me to develop as a leader. At Rob Roy we have always strived to provide something for everyone – a strong teaching program, a competitive band, and a band able to do high quality performances with our group of Highland dancers. I know that this will continue with Ross Brown and Scott Nicholson leading the group.”
“I’m excited about taking over the role of Pipe-Major this fall,” Brown said. “We have lots of new music and our membership is strong and growing. We’re also in the planning stages of organizing a trip to Scotland next summer. As per past trips, we’ll compete at a couple of contests, including the World’s, and perform at two or three shows.”
Brown added that he and Leading-Drummer Scott Nicholson will continue to maintain a strong emphasis on teaching. He said that Peter Barbier will also step down as Pipe-Major of the Grade 5 Rob Roy band, staying on as an instructor, giving way to new Pipe-Major, Jim Baggs, who returns to the role.
Scott Bell served as Chair of the Music Committee of the Pipers & Pipe Band Society of Ontario in 2011-12, stepping down from the position and the group in past few weeks.
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Charley Kron, C.E. Kron Bagpipes