March 15, 2024

Pacific Rim Drumming Championships at BC Highland Games, winner receives Reid Maxwell Medal

The fourth event in the Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association’s new eight-contest Solo Drumming Champion of Champions league is the second annual Pacific Rim Solo Drumming Championship, this year moving to ScotFestBC, also known as the British Columbia Highland Games on June 14th in Coquitlam, BC.

The PacRim will also determine the two top finishers advancing to the World Solo Snare Drumming Championship semi-final in Glasgow on October 19th, and award the Reid Maxell Medal to the winner.

The news comes right after Simon Fraser University (the university) will bestow an honourary degree on Maxwell for his lifetime of service to the arts.

The new Reid Maxwell Medal

“We are thrilled that the Pacific Rim Solo Drumming Championship will be held at our Games,” said Mike Chisholm, executive director with ScotFestBC. “Our event has grown steadily over the past decade and has become a show case for the strong piping, drumming and pipe band scene in the Pacific Northwest. There are many great drummers in our region and this new event gives many of them an opportunity to compete on the world stage while highlighting the exceptional level of drumming in our region.”

The outdoor event is the only Canadian contest in the RSPBA’s new league.

A British Columbia Pipers Association partnership is working on a livestream of the contest. As with all competition in the new league, the MSR event will be run under RSPBA rules, with RSPBA-accredited judges deciding the result.

“Maybe Vancouver will host the World’s someday.” – Mike Chisholm, executive director, ScotFestBC

Entries for all events open March 31st and close May 31st.

The Reid Maxwell Medal features an orange ribbon that pays tribute to Maxwell’s trademark baseball cap. RSPBA-accredited judges David Brown and Duncan Millar will assess the contest at Coquitlam Town Centre Park on the Big Tent Stage.

“This is a feather in the cap for our event and solidifies our position as one of the preeminent Highland games on the West Coast,” Chisholm added. “Maybe Vancouver will host the World’s some day.”

The Big Tent Stage at ScotFest

The PacRim contest follows the Intercontinental (February 17th, Newark, New Jersey), Scottish (March 30th, Livingston, Scotland) and European Solo Drumming Championships (April 20th, Lochgelly, Scotland), and the following three qualifiers are:

  • June 29 – Oceania Solo Drumming Championship, Christchurch, New Zealand
  • August 12 – British Solo Drumming Championship, Glasgow
  • September 7 – UK Solo Drumming Championship, Northern Ireland

The World Solo Snare Drumming results also count towards the Champion of Champions tally.

The top four who qualified for the World’s semi-final from the Intercontinental:

  • Blair Beaton, 78th Fraser Highlanders
  • Derek Cooper, Ulster Scottish
  • Kerr McQuillan, Peoples Ford Boghall & Bathgate Caledonia
  • Steven McWhirter, Inveraray & District

McQuillan is the reigning World Solo Drumming Champion. McWhirter has won the World’s 11 times.






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