February 07, 2020

Coronavirus hits piping with delay of teaching cruise

Students from the 2020 Dojo University Cruise make the most of the delay by practicing at their overnight hotel.

The worldwide coronavirus epidemic has hit the piping and drumming world after the 2020 Dojo University Bagpipe Caribbean Cruise was delayed, stranding pipers in Newark, New Jersey, awaiting next steps.

Piping students from around the world, who had registered for the annual cruise managed by renowned piper Andrew Douglas, were left scrambling trying to find lodging for the night after a coronavirus scare aboard the Royal Caribbean’s “Anthem of the Seas” prevented them from boarding.

About 60 students and guests were informed of the delay only when they arrived at the New Jersey port only to be told that it would be delayed by at least a day pending results of a Center for Disease Control test of travelers from the previous sailing on the ship.

According to organizers, the Dojo University Cruise is the “only annual bagpipe school in the world that seamlessly combines world-class instruction with a true vacation for the whole family.”

Rather than despairing, in typical upbeat piping fashion, students staged impromptu performances across hotels in the metro New York area. Douglas and fellow instructors Robert Mathieson, Carl Donley and Andy Fusco plan to lead the “2020 Dojo University Pipe Band” in a flash mob-style performance at the Embassy Suites Newark Airport Hotel at 6:30 pm (ET) on February 7th.

Despite the hiccup in the 2020 event, the next cruise is already planned for February 2021.





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