Prairie Piping Invitational Draws Full House

Published: May 20, 2013
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Regina, Saskatchewan – May 18, 2013 – The revived Prairie Piping Invitational drew roughly 100 people for two hours of excellent piping. Organized by the Saskatchewan Highland Gathering & Celtic Festival, and sponsored by the City of Regina Pipe Band, the event featured six professional players competing with an 8-10 minute medley that had to include both the urlar of a piobaireachd, and also at least one tune by a Canadian composer.

A special feature of the contest was that the audience admission ticket was also a ballot, so that audience members got to select their favourite player. The six featured performers were Ann Gray, Calgary; Josh McFarlane, Winnipeg; Raphael Mercier, Saskatoon; Alex Rasmussen, Regina; Stewart Smith, Calgary; and Sean Somers, Calgary.

Adjudicator Bob Worrall selected three prizes, and a count of the audience ballots selected another.

1st Sean Somers
2nd Ann Gray
3rd Stewart Smith

Audience Favourite: Raphael Mercier

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Pipers: In prematurely changing the physical characteristics of your chanter, you may create greater problems for yourself than those which you initially sought to remedy.
Lionel Tupman, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario