April 30, 2007

PPBSO Music Board establishes Youth Advisory Committee

The Pipers & Pipe Band Society of Ontario (PPBSO) has formed a new Youth Advisory Committee as part of an initiative by its Music Board to be more in tune with the needs and concerns of today’s emerging young pipers and drummers. The program is thought to be the first of its kind by any piping or pipe band association.

The concept emerged in late 2006 at a PPBSO Music Board meeting when concerns were raised about the need to understand the piping and drumming interests of younger members of the PPBSO. Music Board member Pete Aumonier raised the idea of a youth advisory committee, which was strongly supported by other Board members. Aumonier agreed to spearhead the formation of the Committee.

Serving on the PPBSO Youth Advisory Committee:

  • Stuart Aumonier, piper, Niagara-Hamilton Branch
  • Matt Belia, tenor drummer, Western Branch
  • Andrew Griffin, piper, Western Branch
  • Andrew Killick, piper, Ottawa Branch
  • Rob MacLeod, snare drummer, Ottawa Branch
  • Mitch Taylor, piper, Western Branch

“These are all very enthusiastic young players with a desire to be involved,” Pete Aumonier says. “We have also tried to cover a reasonably broad geographical area and have tried to mix pipers and drummers.”

“The Youth Advisory Committee will allow us to hear the ideas and concerns of younger pipers and drummers more clearly,” says Andrew Berthoff, PPBSO Music Board chair. “Pipe band association members quite rightly usually look to those with many years of experience in competition, performance and, quite often, business to lead their organization. But we want to be sure that we don’t lose sight of the changes constantly being driven by young pipers and drummers.

“We also hope that, by giving these young players a voice, they will be more interested in taking the leadership skills that they may gain and become more even involved with the PPBSO and other organizations in the future.”

The group will assemble at various times during the summer, and discuss matters by phone, e-mail and instant messaging. Acting in strictly an advisory capacity, the Committee will make its first formal report to the PPBSO Music Board in the fall.


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  1. This is a good move by the Pipers Society and I’m the first to applaud. Notice how old some organizations leadership can get and set in their ways. Not talking about any specific assoc. It is important to listen to younger players if for nothing else but to be aware of what they are thinking and what is going on. Thanks.



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