May 2011 Results | BagpipeLessons.com

Results for the Spring 2011
Online Piping & Drumming Competition

Earlier this year, we announced the world’s first-ever online piping competition. We built on that success with the expanded and improved BagpipeLessons.com Online Piping Competition for Spring 2011! We received over 180 entries for 20 events in six competitive grades, including Piobaireachd and an Open 4-6 Minute Medley event where creativity and kitchenpiping was encouraged. The competitors submitted their competition videos via YouTube and were evaluated by our panel of top-level adjudicators (each one a world-class piper). Each player received detailed sheet of comments. The list of prizewinners in each event was posted as the results came back from the judges, along with the videos of the winners.

The competition was a great opportunity for many pipers to compete, to gain valuable feedback from the judges, and to participate in the wider piping community. Many of the pipers live in places that require long distance travel to get to traditional competition locations. Many pipers participated in both online competitions and several pipers competed for the first time!

The overall winners were determined by the highest total placings in the three events in each competition level.  The winners receive prizes donated by R.G. HardieApps ReedsKinnaird Bagpipes & Reeds, and scholarship gift certificates that can be used at BagpipeLessons.com. The piper with the most points in any grade wins the BagpipeLessons.com Super Aggregate Prize and a scholarship for a week of tuition at Canada’s world-famous College of Piping.

In addition, each overall winner receives an invitation for membership to the BagpipeLessons.com Inner Circle.  

BagpipeLessons.com Online Competition Overall Prizewinners:

Grade 1:
1. Graham Thompson – USA
2. Lincoln Hilton – Australia
3. Ronan Madden – Ireland

Grade 2:
1. Andrew Yu – Hong Kong (wins a Pipe Chanter donated by R.G. Hardie)
2. Claus Reiss – Denmark
3. Andrew Donlon – USA

Grade 3:
1. Bill Urquhart – USA (wins an engraved Practice Chanter donated by R.G. Hardie)
2. Ramsey Bissex – USA
3. David Hester – USA

Grade 4:
1. John Campbell – Wales (wins a reed mandrel and book donated by Apps Reeds)
2. Matthias Kuehn – Switzerland
3. David Vermeulen – USA

Grade 5:
1. Russell Prewitt – USA (wins a set of Carbon Fiber drone reeds donated by Kinnaird Bagpipes & Reeds)
2. Peter Anderson – USA
3. Sandro (Alex) Murro – USA

Beginner:
1. Peter McDougall – Canada (wins a Pipers Pal reed storage kit donated by Kinnaird Bagpipes & Reeds)
2. Mark Martin – USA
3. Gregory Askew – USA

BagpipeLessons.com Super Aggregate Prize for the Most Points Any Grade:
Graham Thompson – USA receives a scholarship for a week of tuition at Canada’s world-famous College of Piping.

Special Awards:
Best Background: MaryBeth McQueen. Filmed inside the National Museum of the Pacific War, Fredericksburg, Texas, USA.

Best Dress & Deportment: Dr. Stephen Ross, Australia and Brian Harrison, Canada.

Best Video Quality: Graham Thompson, USA.

Some videos of the prizewinners:

Graham Thompson won the Open Medley event, and the Overall in the Grade 1 category. Graham writes: “I am 19 years old and am originally from Gloversville, NY near the Adirondacks I am currently in Rochester, NY where I study music education at Nazareth College. My primary instrument here is the French horn and I will be in my junior year this fall. I began taking piping lessons when I was 13 years old.”

Graham Thompson also won the Grade 1 Piobaireachd, playing the John MacDonald Setting of MacLeod of Rassay’s Salute.

Lincoln Hilton of Australia won the Grade 1 MSR with some tunes of impressive difficulty: Leaving Lunga, Maggie Cameron and the eighth-parted reel Pretty Marion.
Graham Thompson also won the Grade 1 Hornpipe & Jig.

Andrew Yu won the Overall in Grade 2. Andrew writes: “My name is Andrew Yu (My chinese name: Yu Chun-kit) from Hong Kong and I am 16. I started piping when I was 11. My first piping teacher is Cary Chung from Hong Kong Aux police pipe band. In 2009, I started lessons with Chris Lee (Runner up of Nicol-Brown 2010). In my videos, I play a set RG Hardie bagpipes and a Mccallum chanter . I recently won the Open Solo Piping competition in Singapore.”

Dr. Stephen Ross of Canberra, Australia won the Grade 2 Piobaireachd playing the Battle of Auldearn Setting No. 1. Adding to the challenge, Stephen recorded his competition video in front of a live audience!

Bill Urquhart of Ketchikan, Alaska, USA won the Overall in Grade 3 and also the Grade 3 March, Strathspey, and Reel.

David Hester of Baltimore, Maryland, USA played the modern tune The Field of Gold, by Pipe Major Donald MacLeod to win the Grade 3 Piobaireachd event.

John Campbell from Wales won the Grade 4 Overall. John writes: “I was born in Wales and always had a desire to learn ‘A’ musical instrument, but didn’t know what. I started the pipes in 1999 at age 39 in my last of 23 years in the RAF, after a chance encounter with a piper who was practicing for a Millennium New Year gig. In 2009 I attempted solo competitions for the first time with some degree of success. I don’t have access to local tuition, but now rely completely on the occasional online lesson to keep me out of trouble.”

John won the Grade 4 Piobaireachd (Ground & Next Variation) playing the Munro’s Salute.
John Campbell won the Grade 4 2/4 March.
John Campbell also won the Grade 4 Strathspey & Reel.

Russell Prewitt of La Center, Washington, USA won the Overall in Grade 5. He writes: “I took an interest in bagpipes when I heard a piper off in the distance while my wife and I were on a hike in Glencoe, Scotland. I can play on an airplane because I’m an aircraft technician for the airlines and it’s a good place to practice without disturbing anyone. By the way it was on the ground and at the gate.”

Seattle’s Peter Anderson won the Grade 5 Piobaireachd, playing The Munro’s Salute.

Sandro (Alex) Murru won the Grade 5 Slow Air, playing the Road to Ardfern.

Peter McDougall of New Brunswick, Canada won the overall in the Beginner events. Peter writes: “Just a quick note to say how much I have appreciated what the judges had to say on their comment sheets. It was clear that they really did take the time to listen and watch. I’ve had a lot of fun telling my non-piping family/friends/colleagues about how you’ve managed to integrate new technology with an ancient art. When I first mention that I participated in an internet based event they laugh and wonder how this could even be possible. When I explain it a little further, they are all intrigued and comment on what a great idea it was. Thanks for your efforts in putting on this competition, thanks to the judges for their involvement.”

Peter McDougall also won the Beginner Slow Air.

Gregory Askew of Palmdale, California, USA won the Beginner 2/4 March. Gregory writes: “This was my first competition. I have been playing the chanter for 3 1/2 years and hoping to start on the pipes soon.”

The complete list of prizewinners:

Event 19. Open – Medley (4-6 Minutes)
1. Graham Thompson – USA
2. Graeme McCombe – Canada
3. Lincoln Hilton – Australia
4. Aaron Stone – USA
5. Shian Jessen – Denmark
6. Cedric Feys – Belgium
Judge: William McCallum
(15 entered)

Event 18. Grade 1 – Piobaireachd
1. Graham Thompson – USA
2. Lincoln Hilton – Australia
3. Benjamin Pollard – USA
4. Graeme McCombe – Canada
5. Brian Haddon – Canada
6. Aaron Stone – USA
Judge: Greg Wilson
(11 entered)

Event 17. Grade 1 – Hornpipe & Jig
1. Graham Thompson – USA
2. Aaron Stone – USA
3. Ronan Madden – Ireland
4. Lincoln Hilton – Australia
5. Brian Haddon – Canada
6. Ernesto Góngora – Mexico
Judge: Alan Bevan
(16 entered)

Event 16. Grade 1 – March, Strathspey & Reel (each tune at least 4 parts)
1. Lincoln Hilton – Australia
2. Ronan Madden – Ireland
3. Graham Thompson – USA
4. Brian Haddon – Canada
5. Aaron Stone – USA
6. Graeme McCombe – Canada
Judge: William McCallum
(14 entered)

Event 15. Grade 2 – Piobaireachd
1. Stephen Ross – Australia
2. Ronan Madden – Ireland
3. Claus Reiss – Denmark
4. Andrew Donlon – USA
5. Andrew Yu – Hong Kong
6. Seth Wells – USA
Judge: Peter Aumonier
(12 entered)

Event 14. Grade 2 – Hornpipe & Jig
1. Andrew Yu – Hong Kong
2. Claus Reiss – Denmark
3. Seth Wells – USA
4. Andrew Donlon – USA
5. Kyle Banta – Canada
6. Ryan Moore – Canada
Judge: Andrew Bonar
(10 entered)

Event 13. Grade 2 – March, Strathspey & Reel (each tune at least 4 parts)
1. Andrew Yu – Hong Kong
2. Claus Reiss – Denmark
3. Andrew Donlon – USA
4. Ernesto Góngora – Mexico
5. Kyle Banta – Canada
6. Harvey McLendon – USA
Judge: Richard Hawke
(13 entered)

Event 12. Grade 3 – Piobaireachd
1. David Hester – USA
2. Bill Urquhart – USA
3. John Campbell – Wales
4. Bob Wallace – USA
Judge: William McCallum
(5 entered)

Event 11. Grade 3 – March, Strathspey & Reel (each tune at least 4 parts)
1. Bill Urquhart – USA
2. Ramsey Bissex – USA
3. J David Hester – USA
4. Bob Wallace – USA
5. Alexander Radionov – Russia
6. Sandro (Alex) Murro – USA
Judge: James MacHattie
(8 entered)

Event 10. Grade 3 – Jig (at least 4 parts)
1. Ramsey Bissex – USA
2. Irene Braham – Mexico
3. Bill Urquhart – USA
4. Shian Jessen – Denmark
5. Gwendolen Rowe – USA
Judge: Greg Wilson
(8 entered)

Event 09. Grade 4 – Piobaireachd (Ground & Next Variation)
1. John Campbell – Wales
2. Marty McKeon – USA
3. Mark Baban – USA
4. David West – USA
5. Carraig New – USA
6. Tevye Celius – USA
Judge: Richard Hawke
(12 entered)

Event 08. Grade 4 – Strathspey & Reel
1. John Campbell – Wales
2. Matthias Kuehn – Switzerland
Judge: Andrew Bonar
(4 entered)

Event 07. Grade 4 – 2/4 March
1. John Campbell – Wales
2. David Vermeulen – USA
3. David James – USA
4. David West – USA
5. Marty McKeon – USA
6. Garry Gregson – USA
Judge: Alan Bevan
(12 entered)

Event 06. Grade 5 – Piobaireachd (Ground Only)
1. Peter Anderson – USA
2. Matthias Kuehn – Switzerland
3. Jim Lowe – USA
4. Dagmar Pesta – Germany
Judge: James MacHattie
(7 entered)

Event 05. Grade 5 – 2/4 March (at least 4 parts)
1. Russell Prewitt – USA
2. Darren Gordon – USA
3. Sandro (Alex) Murro – USA
4. Kelsie Sinclair – Australia
5. Peter Anderson – USA
6. Brian Harrison – Canada
Judge: Peter Aumonier
(12 entered)

Event 04. Grade 5 – Slow Air (at least 2 parts)
1. Sandro (Alex) Murru – USA
2. Russell Prewitt – USA
3. Brian Harrison – Canada
4. Peter Anderson – USA
5. Kelsie Sinclair – Australia
6. Jim Lowe- USA
Judge: Richard Hawke
(11 entered)

Event 03. Beginner (practice chanter) – 2/4 March
1. Gregory Askew
2. Peter McDougall
Judge: Andrew Bonar
(3 entered)

Event 02. Beginner (practice chanter) – 3/4 or 4/4 March (2 or 4 parts)
1. Peter McDougall – Canada
2. Mark Martin – USA
Judge: James MacHattie
(2 entered)

Event 01. Beginner (practice chanter) – Slow Air
1. Peter McDougall
2. Mark Martin
Judge: Alan Bevan
(2 entered)

[Aggregate winners were determined by British Columbia Pipers Association Rules: 1st = 88 points, 2nd = 56 points, 3rd = 38 points, 4th = 25 points, 5th = 16 points, sixth = 10 points.]
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