Published: November 24, 2014

World’s percussionists enthralled by pipe band drumming at international convention

More than 500 percussionists, including some of the world’s greatest, attended a workshop on pipe band drumming rudiments at the 2014 Percussive Arts Society International Convention in Indianapolis on November 20th, and left impressed and wanting more.

The workshop, entitled “Expanding the Vocabulary – The Scottish Rudiment Project,” focused on explaining specific Scottish snare drum rudiments and showcased their use in non-pipe band compositions, and was run by Michael Eagle, former leading-drummer of the now defunct Grade 1 Oran Mor Pipe Band. Eagle is currently a professional percussionist.

According to Ian Gibson, who is also a professional percussionist as well as the bass drummer and mid-section leader of the Grade 1 Peel Regional Police Pipe Band of Brampton, Ontario, “The workshop was a huge success attracting well over five hundred attendees ranging from college students, professors, industry experts and professionals, including the Principal Percussionist of the New York Philharmonic.”

The Ruff Drags at PASIC 2014 in Indianapolis.

Casey Cangelosi, a renowned percussion composer, performer and educator, and Nick Angelis, a featured soloist with the original cast of Blast and a drum-line educator in the United States, demonstrated at the workshop, which also included a performance by the Ruff Drags, a pipe band oriented drum line that has played at the annual Winter Storm workshop in Kansas City the last few years.

Gibson said that the Percussive Arts Society International Convention workshop resulted in “numerous inquiries from people wanting to learn more about playing in pipe bands.”

The convention is held every year. Details of the 2015 event are not yet known.

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