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Old 14-07-12, 02:18 PM   #1
sass jane
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The past week for me has been spent at a piping & drumming school. I have been going to this one annually, for many years as it is a fabulous combination of first class intensive instruction, piping time, the best people you can find anywhere, and for me...vacation. This one works for me....it inspires me, invigorates me as a player and thus as a person. Good piping schools have always done that for me, right back to my days at the School of Gaelic Arts that was held in Timmins, Ontario... back in my youth. My technique and execution gets picked apart and examined, I get a whole whackload of new tunes, and there is always the value of spending time with other people just as obsessed with my favourite thing as I am.

While it would never replace regular instruction with a tutor, it is a brilliant addition to piping education. I had a campfire conversation one night with a couple of the instructors that ended up comparing piping and drumming schools and their importance in our playing lives, especially those that we attended at a young age.

I'm curious to know what piping schools people like .... or what other methods of inspiration and musical rejuvenation people use...?
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Old 15-07-12, 06:29 AM   #2
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The only piping school I've attended (and attended several times) is Piping Hot Summer Drummer at the Silverstar Ski Resort in Vernon, BC. Not only have I gotten first class instruction from the likes of Jack Lee, Stuart Lydell and others of the SFU Band but I have also made friendships with fellow pipers from around the world... and had a wicked good week while doing it! I'd recommend PHSD to anyone.
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Old 15-07-12, 10:09 PM   #3
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I'm still relatively new to the piping end of things and have never been to any schools. Learnt all I know with my band. I often wish I'd taken it up years ago so that I'd be much better than I am now, I feel like I'm coming into it a bit late in life. (Yeah... I know there's plenty of people who've started even later in life). So it really doesn't take a lot to inspire me.

Back to what I know in the DM world.... over the years I've worked with a lot of DMs, taken part in various workshops & seminars. Whilst it's interesting and sometimes useful to know some of the things certain judges like, or look for, I think you get much more outta one on one tuition. I've seen scenarios where one person tells you one way to do something one week, and then someone else gives a totally different version the following week. Whilst I can make decisions about which is right for me, maybe if there's times to use each way etc. I think it can be confusing for younger or less experienced people.
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Old 16-07-12, 06:17 PM   #4
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Way back when, I attended the North Idaho Collage piping school which ran for 2 weeks each summer. Fantastic instruction (which, being a teenage "rock and roll rebel" I did not take full advantage of), and great times. I regret now not paying more attention (especially when it comes to piobaireachd).
I have attended a few workshops in various locations since then, and have found them very worthwhile as well.
I have never attended a piping school/workshop to be inspired, but more times than not, wind up being very inspired by a comment from an instructor.
I forgot to add that as of late, competition have proved to be quite inspiring for me (not my playing!)
Listened to a couple pro events this past weekend, and we were lucky to hear Andrew Bonar play in them. We don't usually get any out of town pros, so it was great hearing a world class player from out of town "live".
There are a couple local guys playing as well (who are all also brilliant players).

Last edited by scaryguy; 16-07-12 at 07:26 PM..
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