June 10, 2024

BCPA once again turns grief to gratitude with refocus on bass and tenors and new Brittany Angeltvedt Memorial Trophy

Brittany Angeltvedt, 2012.

The Pacific Northwest piping and drumming scene has a particular way of turning grief into gratitude.

In 1994, the sudden deaths of pipers Malcolm Bokhenforh and Rob Barbelak resulted in the formation of the wonderfully successful Robert Malcolm Memorial Pipe Band organization, a teaching effort that has realized hundreds of new pipers and drummers populating the scene.

The heartbreaking passing of celebrated piper Andrew Bonar in 2017 has prompted tributes, including raising huge amounts for brain cancer research and memorial events that celebrate and preserve Bonar’s creativity and joyful personality.

The loss of piper and leader Skye Richendrfer has inspired the creation of memorial events throughout the area and elsewhere, particularly emphasizing the success of young pipers.

The seemingly innate desire to turn sadness into hope will continue at this year’s ScotFest BC Highland Games, June 14-15, at Town Centre Park in Coquitlam, British Columbia, by highlighting the “dedicated work ethic and talent” of bass and tenor drummers” with the unveiling of the new Brittany Angeltvedt Memorial Trophy.

Angeltvedt, who passed away in 2018, was one of the area’s most accomplished tenor drummers, a World’s-winning member with both the Grade 1 Simon University Pipe Band and the Robert Malcolm Memorial organization.

“This trophy serves as a touching tribute to Brittany’s passion for Scottish music and her enduring impact on the community.” — Mackenzie Baranov

In sync with the BCPA reintroducing the Best Midsection prize, recognizing outstanding bass and tenor drumming, the Brittany Angeltvedt Memorial Trophy – a crystal four-pillared diamond donated by members of SFU in her memory.

Brittany Angeltvedt (left) and Mackenzie Baranov playing in massed bands with SFU in 2013.

“This trophy serves as a touching tribute to Brittany’s passion for Scottish music and her enduring impact on the community,” said Mackenzie Baranov, who will also judge the tenor drumming contests as the BCPA’s only accredited bass and tenor judge.

Baranov worked closely with BCPA Music Board Chair David Hilder and a committee of bass and tenor instructors to bring the new effort to reality. “The BCPA have been trying to bring equal opportunities, like having their own specialized adjudicators and prizes for bass and tenor drumming events at the various sanctioned Highland games.” Baranov added.

The BCPA also resurrected the Most Promising Bass Drummer at the BCPA Annual Gathering last March. The Clifford Allen Sutton Trophy was awarded to Isla Ross of Robert Malcolm Memorial 3.

Tenor drumming in pipe bands had fallen out of favour by the late 1980s, only to be resurrected as a serious art form and ensemble contributor in the mid-1990s through the efforts of musicians such as Tyler Fry, Haggis MacLeod, Scott Currie and Steven McQuillan. Mid-sections today are seen as an integral aspect of competing pipe bands, though still often little recognized by many adjudicators and associations.

At the height of the tenor drumming renaissance, the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association suddenly dropped the Grade 1 Bass Section prize at the World Pipe Band Championships in 2008. Grassroots efforts to restore the award have so far proven unsuccessful.

McQuillan, along with high profile Scottish drummers Arthur Cook and Mick O’Neill, has recently worked to develop RSPBA tenor drumming competitions such as the World Solo Tenor titles for juvenile and adult categories, and rewriting Piping and Drumming Qualifications Board criteria for snare, bass and tenor to reflect current day expectations for teaching and performance.






Forgotten Password?