Robert Mathieson previews Shotts’ World’s concert; ‘Caledonia’ features new repertoire, line-up
The “Pre-World’s Concert” is probably the most prestigious performances that a pipe band can be invited to stage, and the 2008 version of the Grade 2 Phoenix Honda-Glasgow Skye Pipe Band‘s annual event will be put on by the House of Edgar-Shotts & Dykehead Pipe Band with a roster of members who will be playing with the band for the first time in a concert setting.
Entitled “Caledonia,” Pipe-Major Robert Mathieson says that the August 13th event at the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall will feature approximately 24 pipers, eight mid-section drummers and nine snare-drummers. As with all Shotts concerts in the last 20 years, there will be a large degree of non-traditional pipe band instruments and backing from vocals, keyboard, guitar, bouzouki, fiddle, whistles, smallpipes and percussion.
“We are very excited about this project,” Mathieson said. “It has been several years since the band has done the pre-World’s concert. We will feature new piping compositions, some older material repackaged and played along with the guest singers, new medleys and, of course, the essential drum fanfare.”
Maybe more than any other top-tier Grade 1 band, Shotts has had a substantial personnel revamp, with as many as 12 members departing amicably for other opportunities. The band has brought in an equally large number of new pipers and drummers, though, and Mathieson promises that the “new” band will be every bit as strong as the 2007 version.
“I think the time is right for us to take on [the concert],” he said. “The influx of new players has given the band a new energy and motivation that I can hear in our current performance level. I am very confident that the band will pack a strong punch this season.”
Tickets to “Caledonia” are priced at £17.50, available directly from the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall.