Glenfiddich Championships a go for October 30th
The William Grant Foundation, organizers of the prestigious Glenfiddich Invitational Solo Piping Championships, have confirmed that the event is on for October 30th at Blair Castle in Blair Atholl, Scotland.
Originally named the Grant’s Championship, it will be the 48th annual running of the competition since it began in 1974. Last year’s event went ahead despite restrictions on gatherings, with a pre-recorded contest adhering to safety protocols, and later streamed as a broadcast to a pay-per-view audience worldwide.
Whether this year’s event will return to its usual large in-person audience or take a different format is still to be determined.
“It looks like we might, just might, have a reasonably normal Glenfiddich this year,” said Liz Maxwell, longtime coordinator of the championship. “I can confirm that the date is Saturday, October 30th, same time, same place. Accommodation and the Pipers’ Ceilidh will be at the Atholl Palace Hotel. This of course, is all dependent on any changes and, if the worse comes to the worst, we will still have an event behind closed doors and no ceilidh, just like 2020.”
Another uncertainty is the invitation list. With the Masters Solo Piping Competition being the only qualifying competition being held this year, the other eight or nine pipers who join the aggregate winner of that event and 2020 Glenfiddich Champion Stuart Liddell of Inveraray, Scotland, are to be determined.
“How the invitation list will be compiled has yet to be decided, but it will be fair and completely transparent,” Maxwell added.
With online competitions replacing in-person events through most of 2020 and 2021 in much of the piping world, cancelled qualifying contests like those at the Argyllshire Gathering and Northern Meeting means that the Glenfiddich will have to use a different method for invitations. In 2020, organizers built its list of invitees from previous Glenfiddich winners and runners-up still actively competing.
Here’s a short pipes|drums video that gives you an idea of the bucolic drive into the grounds of the Blair Castle estate, home of the Duke of Atholl.
Stuart Liddell: 2020 Glenfiddich Champion
October 31, 2020
Glenfiddich competitors decided
September 21, 2020