Scottish piping will be well represented at the festival with Burgess Hay and and his son, Scott Burgess Hay of Burgess Bagpipes heading to Glengarriff for the Jim Dowling Uilleann Pipe and Trad Festival, where they will be imparting their love and vast knowledge of all things pipe-related and giving other pipers a chance to play instruments they would not normally get their hand on.
They will also run a workshop with a mixture of presentations, audience participation, demonstration and discussion. They will tell the story of the history behind Burgess Bagpipes and Scottish piping, explaining how the instruments are designed and made, with a lot of props like Scottish Small Pipes, Border Pipes and the Great Highland Bagpipe. After a question and answer session they will then encourage the participants to try one or all the instruments – that’s where things could get rowdy, with these lads mad to teach the locals a traditional Scottish tune or two.
Piping in Scotland has never been more popular. Being a piper is cool, but it was not always that way. Bagpipe making and design had been stuck in a rut for a century. Playing had gone through phases since the war but gradually declining through the 70s, 80s and 90s with pipe bands folding and the number of solo players declining. But things have changed. Interest in playing the pipes has increased massively over the last ten years. This is due to a number of factors which include, BBC Alba, TV coverage of the World Pipe Band Championships, raising profiles of professional pipers like Fred Morrison through Celtic Connections, Red Hot Chilli Pipers franchise, and a rise in interest in Scottish and pipe band culture generally.
Ross and Ali of Treacherous Orchestra play the Highland Bagpipes in the Key of A – a sight to behold.
With this comes a change of playing styles and a requirement for different instruments, instruments that can play with other musicians, bellows blown instruments and variations of Highland Bagpipes that play in different keys. Instruments that look modern, durable and are perfectly in tune. Burgess Bagpipes was set up to design, and manufacture these instruments and our aim is to support the fantastically talented up and coming generation. This sometime involves arriving en masse to events like ours, where the love of pipes and piping is at the core of this great festival of pipes in Glengarriff.
The lads will be at the Park Hotel on Saturday afternoon from 2pm onwards so get along and don’t forget your sporran! They are sure to be around the town during the weekend as well enjoying the craic.