Braemar Gathering Results: Updated with Comment, Juniors and Pictures

Fifteen thousand spectarors crammed into Duke of Fife Memorial Park in Braemar yesterday to listen to the solo piping at the 2017 Royal Gathering. It was the biggest crowd ever in the history of our music and shows just how popular it can be, especially when the benches comprise the likes of………

Gold Medal Piobaireachd
1 Anna Kummerlöw, Lament for John Morrison, Assynt House
2 Sandy Cameron, Park Piob No2
3 Ursa Beckford, Lament for Donald Duaghal MacKay
4 Dan Lyden, Red Speckled Bull
5 Ben Duncan, Rory MacLoude’s Lament
6 Nick Hudson, Lament for the Children
Judges: M McRae, J Taylor, R Wallace

Adjudicator Robert Wallace writes: Anna Kummerlöw produced the finest rendition of a Donald MacLeod piobaireachd that I have heard in a long time and I think the rest of the bench would concur. It was beautifully musical, lyrical and delivered on a melodious pipe with a perfectly measured top hand. The technique was better than  some that I heard at the Northern Meeting, one of our number saying that her crunluath was reminiscent of Angus MacColl’s crisp delivery. Anna was a very worthy winner of the Braemar Highland Society’s Gold Medal worth £1,000. In addition she also received a cash award of £400, a new initiative by the promoter and one that will surely have more players attending the royal gathering next year.

Anna, Queen of Piping at Braemar, is pictured above in front of the Royal Pavilion on the games field.

Second prize went to Sandy Cameron who would do much better if he moved his Park 2 ground along more and cut the D in the rundown a little. He timed the T&C as per Kilberry and though unconventional, this was not unattractive. Ursa Beckford produced a competent Donald Duaghal on a nice pipe – but no more than nice. Some would prefer a more robust sound with greater harmonic depth. His timing was awry here and there (and too long on the main cadence note in the T&C singlings) and the crunluath is verging on tight. However, overall, this was fine playing from Ursa. Fourth went to Dan Lyden with the best tune I have heard from him. The ‘Bull’ requires a good C on the chanter and Dan’s was off from the off. It did improve and with a little smoothing out of his approach to cadences he will continue to do well with this tune.

Ben Duncan had an excellent instrument and finger but a flat high G and jerky linking notes in Variation Two of Rory MacLoude. Nick Hudson made a bit of a mess of Variation 1 of the Children but there was sufficient merit elsewhere in his performance to earn last year’s winner of the Gold Medal sixth prize. Of the other competitors, pipe and finger problems abounded in the cold wind coming off the mountains.

1 Ben Duncan
2 Sandy Cameron
3 Jonathan Greenlees
4 Anna Kummerlöw
5 Kris Coyle
6 Jori Chisholm
Judges: Gordon Clark, Ian Duncan, Patricia Henderson

Jim Wood, Braemar Secretary, presentes the Champion PIper Shield to Ben Duncan of the Army School of Piping

Strathspey & Reel
1 James McHattie
2 Ben Duncan
3 Kris Coyle
4 Nick Hudson
5 Ashley McMichael
6 Sandy Cameron
Judges: As the March

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Junior Events – judge Ronnie Clark

1 Andrew Ferguson
2 Finlay Cameron
3 Bobby Allen
4 Lee Taylor
5 Lewis Russell

U-18 March:
1 Finlay Cameron
2 Robbie MacIsaac
3 Andrew Ferguson
4 Bobby Allen
5 Lewis Russell

Junior winners at Braemar

Strathspey & Reel
1 Robbie MacIsaac
2 Finlay Cameron
3 Lewis Russell
4 Andrew Ferguson
5 Bobby Allen

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