Dysart rebuilding for 2009
The once mighty Dysart & Dundonald Pipe Band of Fife, Scotland, is planning to reform for the 2009 season after being forced to sit out 2008 due to a significant loss of personnel.
The band saw a drop in numbers after the formation of the Grade 1 Fife Constabulary Pipe Band in August 2007. Fife Constabulary has enjoyed a solid debut season so far, finishing with mid-pack respectability at the two RSPBA championships in 2008.
According to a statement from the band, Dysart & Dundonald is “looking to recruit Grade 1 pipers and drummers to compete in the 2009 season.” Pipe-Major Brian Lamond and Leading-Drummer Carl Williams, who took the post after the 2007 season, will be conducting “workshops for youngsters wishing to learn pipes and drums to potentially become the ‘new blood’ for the future.”
The band said that it will begin recruiting new pipers and drummers for the Grade 1 band “immediately after” the Cowal Pipe Band Championships on August 23rd in Dunoon, Scotland. The first workshop will be held at the Dundonald Institute on July 26th, and the band welcomes all youngsters who wish to learn. Anyone interested in joining can contact the band by e-mail.
Dysart & Dundonald’s era of glory was 30 years ago when the band won consecutive World Championships in 1977 and ’78 under Pipe-Major Bob Shepherd and Leading-Drummer James King.
I really hope it works out for Dysart. They were trailblazers of the modern medley (remember the Banjo breakdoen medley?) and have produced some fantastic pipers and drummers. Fingers crossed that they can revive the name and reputation.
I could be wrong, but I thought that it was City of Toronto that came up with the Desperate Battle” thing first. Maybe Gerry Quigg can enlighten us. I know he’s out there!”
Out of curiosity what is the level of participation in Pipe Bands in Scotland? Is it decreasing compared to say 10 years ago?
I also really hope it works for Dysart&Dundonald but unfortunately i can’t see this one getting off the ground and into grade 1. Dysart had a perfectly good feeder system in Ballingry & Lochgelly high school juvenile bands until 2002 when they decided that they were no longer required, a piping and drumming institution set up by Bob Shepherd and continued until this day still, as successfully by Tom Brown. Dysart started their own demise when they made this decision and sadly have now have to compete with the newly formed fife police grade 1 band and several other bands in fife for players. With most of fifes talent spread far a field, fifers are playing in most of the top grade 1 bands including, simon fraser, scottish power, shotts, st laurence o’toole, boghall, clan gregor & Australia highalnders and fife police, might i just add propably 95% of these players were taught or were former players of either ballingry, lochgelly school and dysart.i really cannot see the current set up being an attraction for any of these guys to return. Sad to see this happen to such a band but when big desicions are made that affect the future of your band, they often will come back to haunt you. This is now the case with Dysart.
Busby I fear that you are probably right and that is a great shame. To me the decision to get rid of the feeder bands was mind bogglingly daft! As you say you reep what you sew….