NPC and Glenfiddich Announce ‘Behind Closed Doors’ Arrangements for 2020 Competition

The Glenfiddich Piping Championship was established in 1974 to inspire the world’s finest exponents of ceòl mòr and ceòl beag, writes Helen Urquhart of the National Piping Centre.

After a summer of disruption to the usual qualifying events, the team behind the Glenfiddich Piping Championship are pleased to announce the invitation list for this year’s event, which will be available online on Saturday 31st October.

Invited to compete are: Finlay Johnston, Callum Beaumont, Jack Lee,
Roderick MacLeod, Angus MacColl, Stuart Liddell, Iain Speirs, William McCallum, Connor Sinclair and Bruce Gandy.

The list was compiled commencing with the defending Glenfiddich Champion and the winner of the Bratach Gorm and Overall Champion from the 2019 Scottish Piping Society of London Annual Competition – the only qualifying event to take place.

To bring the total to 10, invitations were extended to still competing past Glenfiddich Champions and, because of duplications, to second overall placings.

The event will take place behind closed doors at Blair Castle, with competitors, judges and a small technical team. It will all adhere to COVID – 19 risk assessment and guidelines, like the recent Silver Chanter and other Piping Live! events.

Defending Glenfiddich Champion Finlay Johnston

The judges are: Piobaireachd Iain MacFadyen, William Morrison, Dr. Jack Taylor; March Strathspey and Reel: Walter Cowan, Colin MacLellan, Ian McLellan.

To ensure a musically enhanced and faultless experience, all the performances will be recorded live from Blair Castle and premiered online from 10am UK time on Saturday 31st October. The online stream is £15 to access from

Go online and register now, then on the day, simply log back in and refresh the stream at 10am, then sit back and enjoy the day. The stream will remain online for 24 hours after the event for viewers to re- watch. There is an additional incentive to register for online tickets this year.

Everyone that buys a ticket online will be entered into a prize draw for one of two sets of pipes. There is a set of McRae Bagpipes from McCallum Bagpipes and a set of Peter Henderson PH1HT Heritage bagpipes from R.G. Hardie & Co, generously donated by these companies.

The National Piping Centre team are delighted to be bringing this event to the piping world this autumn. By buying a ticket to the event you are supporting not only the Centre at this tough time, but also supporting the players, tech staff and the ongoing work of the National Piping Centre across all its teaching and associated projects.

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