Oban and Inverness add Silver Medal qualifier
In 1978 the Northern Meeting and the Argyllshire Gathering at Inverness and Oban, respectively, added Silver Medal piobaireachd competitions to address the challenges of Gold Medal competitions that had more than 60 competitors and ran from dawn until nearly midnight. Now, these major gatherings are adding a qualifier contest that will decide who will fill unallocated spots in the Silver Medal.
The event will be organized by the Competing Pipers Association and will be held on August 22 at the Glasgow College of Piping.
The Argyllshire Gathering has allocated room for 28 competitors at this year’s Silver Medal, and the Northern Meeting, 25. Scotland’s Joint Committee for Judging has this year – based on entries and the piper’s recent competitive track record and CPA grading – put 18 applicants in the Oban Silver Medal and 20 in the Inverness event, meaning that 10 spots at the Argyllshire Gathering and five at the Northern Meeting are up for grabs in the qualifier.
To be eligible to compete in the qualifier competition, a piper must be grade B or better by the CPA or, according to correspondence to potential competitors, “considered by the Joint Eligibility Committee to be of an equivalent standard.” Entrants must have applied already to compete at least one of the Silver Medals.
In 2009 the CPA introduced a more international grading committee comprising both active competitors and pipers retired from competition.
The Argyllshire Gathering also has reverted to its original criteria to compete in its Silver Star MSR competition. From 2010 on those who have won either the A-Grade March or the A-Grade Strathspey & Reel can compete in the Silver Star. In the 1990s the competition had changed the criteria, requiring competitors to have won both the events.
Pipers who have secured spots in the Silver Medal:
Pipers currently eligible for the qualifier competition: