Aboyne Contest Place Available/ Free Balmoral Concert via YouTube

Aboyne Highland Games

There is a vacancy created by another withdrawal from Aboyne, writes Dr Jack Taylor. Anyone interested in entering will be accepted on a first come first serve basis. Six piobaireachd and three MSRs are needed, tunes chosen on the day. 

An audio recording is made on Games Day, 1st August, supervised by one of our stewards. Contact me on jackandmarytaylor@gmail.com or 07999955386. Details are on the entry form here. At least there won’t be any weather problems this year!

In 1950 the Aberdeen Press & Journal reported that, ‘Torrential rain and a cold wind sent thousands of people scurrying for shelter and almost ruined the Aboyne Highland Games’.  

Bob Nicol won the piobaireachd and I remember him saying that one year at Aboyne he won with the Old Woman’s Lullaby when there was a downpour.  I wonder if it was then. 

1950 Result:
1 R B Nicol, Balmoral
2 Donald MacLean, Lewis
3 DR MacLennan, North Berwick

Bob Nicol won the Piobaireachd and Strathspey & Reel at Aboyne in 1950. He is pictured here as Pipe Major of the 2nd Battalion, Gordon Highlanders, in France in 1944. Pipe Corporal Findlater (far right) is the son of the famous Piper George Findlater VC

1 P/M J B Robertson, London
2 RU Brown, Balmoral
3 Donald MacLean, Lewis

1 RB Nicol
2 RU Brown
3 Donald MacLean

Free Balmoral School Concert

I know this is last minute, but Balmoral has decided to make our Summer Instructors’ Concert available to the public online, writes Elaine Lee of the US-based Balmoral Schools organisation. This will take place this evening [Thursday, July 16], via YouTube.

Our online school have gone very well this summer. All the students seem to have been pleased. We plan to keep online classes as part of what we do in the future, offering schools at other times of the year.

So as a ‘thanks’ to our supporters, we are opening our Week 2 Summer Instructors’ Concert to the public. Viewers can enjoy performances by our world-renowned guest instructors, staff piping instructors and other musicians and dancers from the comfort of your own home.

  • Act One features: Robert Mathieson, Road to the Isles (Celtic ensemble) with Scottish & Irish dancers, Richmond Johnston and Andrew Carlisle.
  • Act Two features: Gordon Bell & student drummers, George Balderose and Bruce Gandy.

The 2020 Online Concert will be presented as a YouTube Premier event. It begins at 7:00pm [local time], July 16, at the following link: https://youtu.be/SxtunptaCRA 

What our Online Students are saying about Balmoral 2020:

  • ‘Direct interaction with outstanding instructors.’
  • ‘Knowledgeable and easy to understand.’
  • ‘With the online method, I was able to hear and listen to the instructor speak and make suggestions to other students which allowed me to take in more information.’
  • ‘The responsiveness and level of instruction was top notch.’
  • ‘I enjoyed the opportunity to learn the opinion of different instructors on the same subject.’
  • ‘I liked how even in the zoom meetings we managed to keep the one-on-one feel from prior years.’

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