Blair Atholl, Scotland – October 27, 2012 – Iain Speirs of Edinburgh took home the overall prize at the 2012 Glenfiddich Invitational Solo Piping Competition, held once again in a crowded Great Hall of Blair Castle, the home of the Duke of Atholl. It was the first time that Speirs won the award, gaining it with two second prizes and tying with Willie McCallum of Bearsden, Scotland, on aggregate points, but winning on Piobaireachd preference.
The event was the last competition for Murray Henderson of Kirriemuir, Scotland, who announced his second retirement. Henderson’s career has spanned more than 50 years, and he is the only piper in history to have won the Clasp at the Northern Meeting in four separate decades. Henderson had retired for several years before returning in the 2000s. The event was streamed live on the Internet for the first time, attracting at its most trafficked point as many as 800 viewers. Jackie Pincet of Brittany was awarded the Balvenie Medal for services to piping.
1st Jack Lee, Surrey, British Columbia, “Ronald MacDonald od Morar’s Lament”
2nd Iain Speirs, “MacLeod of Colbeck’s Lament”
3rd Willie McCallum, “The Earl of Ross’s March”
4th Stuart Liddell, Inveraray, Scotland, “Lament for the Children”
5th Callum Beaumont, Bo’ness, Scotland, “The Unjust Incarceration”
Judges: Iain MacFadyen, Jim McGillivray, Willie Morrison
MSR (twice over)
1st Willie McCallum, “Captain Campbell of Drum a Voisk,” “Dora MacLeod,” “John MacKechnie’s Big Reel”
2nd Iain Speirs, “The Duchess of Edinburgh,” “The Top of Craigvenow,” “The Grey Bob”
3rd Stuart Liddell, “Abercairney Highlanders,” “John Roy Stewart,” “The Smith of Chilliehassie”
4th Finlay Johnston, Glasgow, “Arthur Bignold of Lochrosque,” “Susan MacLeod,” “The Rejected Suitor”
5th Gordon Walker, Galston, Scotland, “Hugh Kennedy BSc,” “Tulloch Castle,” “Dr McPhail’s Reel”
Judges: Ian Duncan, Iain MacLellan, Iain Morrison
Also competing but not in the prizes were Murray Henderson; Euan MacCrimmon, Skye; and Roddy MacLeod, Glasgow.