Californians organize new Silver Cap piping contest in Glasgow
Billed as “piping’s premiere competition,” Los Angeles Scots Pipe Band members Richard King and Steve Foley have scheduled Thursday, August 13th, as the date of the first-ever “Silver Cap
” invitational solo piping contest.
A total purse of £3,250 – including a £1,000 first-prize – will be awarded to prominent solo pipers playing their own choice of march, strathspey, reel, slow air, hornpipe and jig. As an entry “fee,” competitors must provide an original unpublished tune either by them or provided by another composer. The competitor must play the tune in the contest, and the compositions will be part of a subsequent collection.
Competitors will be obscured from view of the competition’s judge, Bob Worrall, who will assess performances from behind a screen made from banners of sponsors who donate a minimum of $500.
A chrome hubcap that King found several years ago, which he self-engraved with “Super Open Piping Champ,” served as inpsiration for the event. He and Foley discussed the concept of developing a formal competition, and the event is being funded by King personally, although it is open to sponsorship.
The event will be held at 4 pm at the Glasgow College of Piping and is not part of the Piping Live! festival.
“I want this competition to be laid back and not stressful for the competitors and for the people who are running it,” King said. “The competition scene needs a facelift. I think the prize money should reflect the level of dedication and practice that these competitors put in. I would love to have next year’s first place be closer to £2,000.
“I know the judge will be able to pretty much guess who is playing,” King added. “However, that slight bit of doubt might help to ensure that the judging is based solely on the music.”
Also part of the event is a composing competition available to all, with the works also part of the collection.
So far Alasdair Gillies of Pittsburgh has confirmed as a competitor. King said that Willie McCallum, Angus MacColl, Niall Stewart, Gordon Walker and Stuart Liddell have or will be invited.