PP Ed’s Blog: Composing Competition/ Dunedin Errors/ British Reminder/ Guineas Results

Entries for the Shasta Piping Society’s piobaireachd composing competition, sponsored by the Burley Bagpipe Company, have now closed. Twenty-six tunes from seven different countries have been received by the Society’s co-ordinator Steve Rooklidge. This represents a tremendous success on his, the sponsor’s and the Society’s part.

The judges, myself, Bill Livingstone from Ontario and Mike Cusack from Texas now have the difficult task of selecting our favourites and finally deciding on the top prizes. There are three in total: £500, £250 and £100. It is hoped the winners will be announced in May.

The piobaireachd had to be original to the composer(s), of any style, and could not have been published before. Only one submission was allowed from each composer. No indication of the composer’s identity or composition name on the score was allowed and none will be passed to the adjudicators. Submissions had to include an audio electronic file of the composition played on pipes or practice chanter, with no voice or identifying markers. These audio files will make the judging much easier.

Composers retain all copyright, but have agreed to grant the sponsors free right to publish the score in a music collection and use recordings of the arrangement to advertise future competitions.

Steve Rooklidge added: ‘Piobaireachd submissions will be catalogued, provided individual identification, and sent under blind cover to the panel of judges. Results of the competition will be announced to each of the composers during May, 2017, and announced on pipingpress.com shortly thereafter.

‘Awards will be distributed within 30 days of the winner’s announcement by PayPal payment. The judges, Mike Cusack, Bill Livingstone and Robert Wallace are three of the most respected figures in world piping. Between them they have amassed multiple awards. All are double Gold Medallists and holders of the Northern Meeting Clasp, the senior piobaireachd event. Each has a lifetime of playing and teaching ceol mor.’



shasta-logoShasta Piping Society
The mission of the Shasta Piping Society is to foster interest and proficiency in the traditional music of Scotland.  The main function of the SPS is to provide a programme that enables disadvantaged youth to receive refurbished instruments, so the financial burden of bagpipe purchase does not prevent them from becoming active musicians.  Another goal of the SPS is to encourage existing players to expand their repertoire to include musical scores and settings not often heard by players or audiences.

burley-bagpipe-logoBurley Bagpipe Company
Graham Burley produces high quality bagpipes in Penticton, British Columbia. Graham started learning to play the Great Highland Bagpipe at the age of seven, and as an adult he also took a keen interest in Irish uilleann pipes. The rarity and challenge of uilleann pipes led to his pursuit of pipe making, and with the help of his father, a retired machinist, he started producing Scottish and Irish instruments in 2003 during his machinist apprenticeship.  Burley Bagpipe Company began full-time production in 2013 to provide pipes with quality of tone, stability of sound, and beauty of craftsmanship well suited for the player of ceol mor.


Apologies for the errors in our Dunedin Games report. These have now been corrected.


A reminder that the closing date for the British Championships at Paisley is tomorrow, Wednesday 5th April. All bands who wish to enter should contact RSPBA HQ immediately. Online Entries. The RSPBA’s telephone number is 0141 221 5414. Entries so far are up on last year and organisers are working hard to make sure the first major of the season runs without a hitch.

Here’s the link to the promoter’s website. Read last year’s report on the British here. The picture up top shows the current British Champions, Inveraray & District. Check out the dates for the other majors here.


Full results from South Africa’s 100 Guineas contest have now been added to that report.