A large crowd gathered in Danderhall Miners Club south of Edinburgh for the annual ‘Pipe Major’s Wheel of Fortune’ solo piping competition, writes the Editor.
The winner of both the MSR and the ‘Wheel of Fortune’ Medley was P/M Douglas Murray of Fife Constabulary Pipe Band and proprietor of Kilberry Bagpipes. There is only one prize in the MSR. Second in the Medley was Callum Beaumont with Alasdair Henderson third.
To let you hear what a high standard competition it was have a listen to these recordings, firstly Douglas’s MSR:
And now Callum’s Medley:
And now a couple of 6/8 and an MSR from Alasdair:
Judges were P/Ms Ian McLellan, Bob Shepherd and Barry Donaldson, with input from the audience who all got a chance to register their personal preferences.
Douglas was a worthy winner in my view and showed a welcome return to form after a 2015 which was fairly blank of prizes by his standards. In a change to the programme, he will be playing at the Uist & Barra competition on March 5.
Also there will be Callum and Alasdair, two outstanding young pipers as they demonstrated at the ‘Wheel’. In Scotland each generation seems to produce world-class pipers who carry on the tradition of excellence. These two will be at the very top of the tree for many years to come.
In announcing the prizes, P/M Donaldson said the judge’s list had matched exactly that of the crowd. He is pictured (top) with fellow judge P/M Ian McLellan BEM (left) and the winner Douglas Murray.
Other pipers who played in what was, as I say, a high standard competition, were Angus Nicholson, Jonathan Greenlees, Finlay Johnston and Brian Lamond. In keeping with the spirit of the Wheel of Fortune, each piper has to tell a joke at the end of his performance with a nice cheque for the best. This contest was won for the umpteenth time by Brian.
The ‘Wheel of Fortune’ is an important fund raiser for the City of Edinburgh band and MC Paul White was rightly fulsome in his praise of those sponsors who had donated items for the auction and raffle. These included a fine set of Wm. Sinclair pipes which went for £950 and the composition of an original tune by Allan MacDonald which was won by a Mr Tripp (for £110) who intends naming the tune for his father. Other sponsors included G1 Reeds, Kilberry Bagpipes and Wallace Bagpipes.