Editor’s Notebook: MFD/ Sherriff Pipers/ ‘Royal’ Games/ Duncan and the Prince/ Hector’s Book/ Round the Games

Final word on MFD. Clive Douglas believes there should be a formal recognition of the condition and a warning about over-zealous, obsessional practice. Clive writes: ‘l’m not sure if you could ever stop the condition appearing in a person, but I do think there is a set of circumstances that should probably be avoided. ‘I wonder if there’s a place for some education in this area through the Piping Centre,…

Focal Dystonia in Pipers – Readers Respond With Touching Personal Stories

We make no apology for this third and final (for now) article on Musician’s Focal Dystonia (MFD). You only have to read the comments below to realise the anguish this distressing condition has caused pipers. We are grateful to these correspondents for sharing their experiences and to Norman Matheson whose erudite articles brought the matter once more to pipers’ attention. Bill Currie: ‘Some 15 years ago I consulted the late…

Focal Dystonia in Pipers – Management of the Condition Offers a Bleak Outlook

To recap: Musician’s Focal Dystonia (MFD), as experienced by pipers, is characterised by the inability to perform specific transitions from one note to another, the relevant finger (or fingers) refusing to carry out straightforward demands. First of all, it is quite definite that the affliction cannot be relieved by practice. This simply makes it more entrenched.  Medication: Attempts to treat MFD with medication have met with little success. Drugs such…

Focal Dystonia in Pipers – A Response to Rumours of Successful Management

Interest in Musician’s Focal Dystonia (MFD) has recently resurfaced in the light of articles in Piping Press and rumours of the condition’s successful management. The term ‘Piper’s Palsy’ which is sometimes used to describe MFD is a misnomer. Palsy implies paralysis and paralysis is not a feature of MFD MFD, as experienced by pipers, is characterised by the development of inability to perform specific transitions from one note to another….

The Dynamics of Pipe Band Competition Part 2: On the Day of the Event

I will now move on to how bands and pipe majors may like to deal with the logisitics and formalities on the day of competition – logisitics and formalities that are all to easy to forget midst the tension and pressure of the occasion. Firstly, have last year’s trophies been returned? This may seem trivial, but you would be surprised to learn of the the number of bands that have…