Editor’s Notebook

If it is true that only five pipers played in the Silver Medal qualifier held in British Columbia last weekend it does not necessarily follow that the winner does not deserve his place in the 2020 SM competition. A good tune is a good tune wherever it is delivered.

However, poorly attended qualifiers such as that in western Canada will throw up a perception of unfairness among the majority of home grown Silver Medal candidates toiling hard for a prized place at Oban and Inverness, especially when they have to compete against 20 or 30 of their peers outdoors in the rain at Roseneath, Cowal etc.

The leading advocates of the new qualifying idea, the Competing Pipers’ Association (CPA), might need to re-think their approach. Where the numbers attending any qualifier fall below a certain level then winning that competition should be seen as a contribution to the qualifying credentials of the successful piper not his /her right to automatic entry.

And a more level playing field could be achieved if at a Highland games, a good performance went towards this same track record whether or not this games had CPA qualifying sanctity conferred on it.

Why is it that an outstanding peformance at a remote Highland games with only a few sheep, some midges and a handful of pipers in attendance cannot be seen as a contribution towards qualifying for this premier event too? I say again: a good tune is a good tune wherever it is delivered. More……

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Glenn Brown, the CPA President, is the man who has been pushing the new qualifying arrangement and he deserves credit for trying to find an easier, fairer solution to what is an annual quandary for his association and the promoters.

But unless attention is paid to the points raised above and to the apparent exclusion of premier events such as Skye’s Dunvegan Medal and the Braemar Gathering from the Silver Medal qualification process, he could be in danger of creating more problems than he has solved.

  • Read more about the new 2020 Silver Medal Qualifying arrangements here.

Alastair Campbell, Secretary Inverness Piping Society: Our final recital evening of this season (Saturday, April 27) will feature Brighde Chaimbeul, along with the Society’s immediate past President, Rhona Lightfoot.

Many of you will recall Brighde playing for us a few years ago as a junior player.  Since then, she has gone on to pursue a career in music since studying at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. 

2014 Scots Guards Juniors and Brighde is pictured with principal prizewinners Joshua Townsley and Ewan Murray

As well as playing a selection of tunes on the pipes, Brighde and Rhona will feature some of the music they worked together on for Brighde’s latest recording, ‘The Reeling’. This promises to be another great night and we look forward to seeing you all then.

Eleanor McCarrey, Carrick Lowland Gathering Solo Piping competition co-ordinator: Junior Piping Competition to be held at the Carrick Lowland Gathering Sunday June 2nd in Girvan, South Ayrshire.

Below is the link for the entry form.  Details of the classes available are listed on the form: https://www.girvanattractions.co.uk/juvenile-piping.php; Email – Solopiping@girvanattractions.co.uk

We didn’t have room for this snap in our report on the SPA Professional just over a week ago. It’s of Champion Piper Darach Urquhart with dad Bertie helping him with the trophies at the prizegiving. Isn’t it a nice photograph?:

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