Published: October 31, 2000

CPA Discusses Judging, Set Tunes, Formats at AGM

Perth, Scotland – October 15, 2000 – The Competing Pipers Association held its annual general meeting here today at the Salutation Hotel with 17 of its more than 250 members attending.

Numerous items were discussed at the nearly four-hour meeting, the most important of which involved teachers judging pupils, the light music formats for the Argyllshire Gathering and Northern Meeting, and set tune requirements for the major piobaireachd competition.

The CPA approved a motion “that suggestions be made to Oban and Inverness that the A Grade March and Strathspey/Reel events be combined to MSR, winning which would mean qualification for Former Winners MSR. (Players who had won one event in 2000 should be allowed to play in the Former Winners). Further suggestion to have waiting lists for light music events and to consider qualifying contests.”

This motion comes as a result of steadily-increasing numbers in the light music events at Oban and Inverness, with pipers officially Grade A by the CPA being forced to play in the B Grade light music events.

After deliberation from the floor on the current requirement of six tunes to be submitted for the Gold and Silver medal competitions from a list of 10, the following motion was approved: “To voice pipers’ concerns to the Piobaireachd Society, and to request that the number of set tunes for the Gold and Silver Medals 2001 be reduced to four, of the ten already proposed.”

For the 2000 senior piobaireachd events, the Piobaireachd Society acquiesced to the wishes of pipers and reduced the submission requirement from six to four. The CPA’s discussion this year centred attention on the notion that the six-tune requirement “Directs focus too much on competition and removes pleasure from piping.”

Although no motions were presented on the contentious matter of teachers judging pupils, the AGM included a discussion on the topic. CPA president Colin MacLellan acknowledged that the organization has no officially policy on the matter, but suggested that all pipers could declare their tutors at the beginning of the year, and this could be distributed to competition promoters to help them reduce instances of teachers judging pupils.

A hike in annual membership dues across the board was also agreed to, with senior members now paying £12 and junior members £6.

Resolutions will be tabled at the October 29 meeting of the joint committees comprising the CPA, the Piobaireachd Society, the Argyllshire Gathering and the Northern Meeting. It is believed that the CPA at this meeting will also table the results of its comprehensive survey of members on their opinions of judges. Results have been collated, assigning each judge with a grade of “Senior,” “Approved,” or “No confidence.”

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