Morristown, New Jersey – February 12-14, 2016 – This was the first running of the Piobaireachd Conference, which incorporated two days of piobaireachd masterclasses and teaching with two competitions, one held each evening – a Piobaireachd on Friday, and March, Strathspey & Reel twice through on Saturday. The main organizer was James Stack assisted by June Hanley and Matt Wood of the Eastern United States Pipe Band Association.
The guest instructor/lecturer was Colin MacLellan of Edinburgh, who took Ben McClamrock, Baltimore (“The Rout of the MacPhees”), Nick Hudson, Pittsburgh (“Castle Menzies”), Dan Lyden, Maryland (“Hector MacLean’s Warning”), Andrew Donlon, Pittsburgh (“Rory McCloude’s Lament”) and Derek Midgely, New Jersey (“Clan Chattan’s Gathering”) through their tunes before a substantial and interested audience, pointing out suggestions of style and differences in settings and preferences.
The afternoon session focused on some of the set tunes of 2016, and the tunes were again presented in different styles and settings, with various illustrations of quite rare recorded music accompanying the talk. Tunes covered in this session were “Lament for MacSwan of Roaig,” “Mary’s Praise,” “The Stewarts’ White Banner,” “A Flame of Wrath for Squinting Patrick,” “I am Proud to Play a Pipe” and “The Piper’s Warning to his Master.”
On Sunday morning a lively discussion took place as a session on the various systems and conventions of adjudication in Scotland, and this provided much needed information for those present who are members of the EUSPBA’s panel of judges. The Sunday morning session, which completed the conference, featured the presentation of some of MacLellan’s favourite music, including “The Unjust Incarceration,” “MacLeod of Colbeck’s Lament” and the MacArthur/MacGregor setting of “The MacDougalls’ Gathering.”
The event was mainly supported by the EUSPBA and the Piobaireachd Society.
Piobaireachd (10 competed)
1st Andrew Donlon, “The End of the Great Bridge” (US$500)
2nd Nick Hudson, “The Lament for the Laird of Anapool” ($300)
3rd Derek Midgely, “The Rout of the Lowland Captain” ($200)
4th Dan Lyden, “The Battle of Auldearn” ($100)
5th Ben McClamrock, “The Red Speckled Bull”
6th Duncan Bell “MacNeill of Barra’s March” (MacArthur MacGregor MSS)
MSR (10 competed)
1st Ben McClamrock, “The Glengarry Gathering,” “Tulloch Gorm,” “The Brown-Haired Maid” ($500)
2nd Andrew Donlon, “Inveran,” “Delvinside,” “The Man from Glengarry” ($300)
3rd Nick Hudson, “Queen Elizabeth II’s Welcome to Invergordon,” “Pipe-Major Hector MacLean,” “The Little Cascade” ($200)
4th Derek Midgely, “Mrs. John MacColl,” “Arniston Castle,” “The Cockerel in the Creel” ($100)
5th Andrew Walker, Nazareth, Pennsylvania, “Brigadier-General Ronald Cheape of Tiroran,” “Caledonian Society of London,” Alick C. MacGregor”
6th Dan Lyden, “Pipe-Major John Stewart,” “John Roy Stuart,” “The Smith of Chilliechassie”
Judges: Colin MacLellan, James Stack