LBPS Annual Competition, 2012

Saturday, April 7th


The Society's annual competition will take place on April 7th in 2012. [not April 6th as stated in Common Stock!] It will be held in The Pleasance Theatre, Edinburgh as part of Ceilidh Culture.
The Annual Competition is a very non-competitive event, more an excuse for a get-together - so those of you used to the cut and thrust of Highland piping competitions, put those thoughts aside.


The Pleasance will be well-known to Edinburgh Festival goers as a regular venue; we shall be using the ground-floor 'cabaret' room. This is the second year we have used this venue for this event; we hope that its location close to the centre of the City will prove popular with competitors and audience. The competition takes place as part of the events of the 'Ceildih Culture' festival.

[ View Google Map of venue: opens in new window]

DOORS OPEN  9:30am - First class 10:00am

The Annual Competition is more of a social gathering than a competitive event. Although there is an official judge for every class, members of the audience also participate in voting. No special knowledge is required for this - simply an appreciation of the music. Food is also available at The Pleasance and there are a host of restaurants, bistros and pubs within easy walking distance so the venue is well suited for a great day out. Tea and coffee are served during the day, at reasonable prices, and spectators are very welcome.


The Secretary would appreciate pre-registration 

please let her know what classes you will enter, and the names of your tunes (Judy Barker, 6 Liggars Place, Dunfermline, KY12 7XZ / This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. / 01383 620184).
Separate Booking Forms are required for each class. They can be downloaded from the links included in the class notes below [the same form is used for all classes which are pipes alone, but you must submit a separate one for each class and indicate which class from the list on the form]. Please return them to the address above. Entries for all classes must be confirmed and paid for on the day before 11.00 so make sure you arrive in plenty of time.
The entry per competitor (per event) remains unchanged at £2.50 for members and £5 per class for non members.
Entry for non players is £3.50 for the day.
Depending on demand, it may be necessary to limit the entries to some classes.


Martin Lowe Memorial Trophy

This year in memory of former LBPS Chairman Martin Lowe, who died last October, we will be introducing a new trophy. This will be awarded, not for a particular class, but for the piper who, in the opinion of the judges, makes the greatest contribution on the day to the performance of Lowland and Border music.  All performances will be considered for this award – no separate entry is required. Guidelines for the judging of this trophy are available here.

Please Note: Times cannot be exact -treat these as a rough indication only


1. Novice - The Heriot and Allan Quaich Maximum 10:00am
2 minutes (minimum 1 minute). Maximum 2 tunes. Border or Scottish smallpipes. Download Novice booking form

2. Seasoned pipers - The Nigel Richard Trophy 10:15am
Maximum 3 minutes (minimum 2 minutes). Solo on any Scottish bellows blown pipes. Pipers over 65 years of age. For anyone except those entered in Novice, Intermediate or Open classes. Download Seasoned Pipers booking form

3. Intermediate - The Julian Goodacre Trophy 10:40am
Maximum 3 minutes (minimum 2 minutes). For those who have never competed in a solo open instrumental class at this competition. Winner moves to open class in future LBPS competitions. . Download Intermediate booking form

4. New Composition – The London Trophy 11:20am
Maximum 4 minutes. One tune only per competitor, played twice through. Tune must have been composed since the last competition and played on bellows blown pipes. A competitor may enter someone else's composition as long as they have the composer's permission. Note: the piper must play solo with no other instruments accompanying. . Download New Composition booking form

5. Open solo for Scottish small pipes - Colin Ross Trophy 12 noon
Maximum 4 minutes (minimum 3 minutes). For anyone except those entered in Novice, Intermediate or Seasoned pipers classes. Download Open Smallpipes booking form


6. Duet for pipes - Mains Castle Medals Maximum 13:30pm
4 minutes (minimum 3 minutes). Two pipers, two sets of pipes, one of which must be Border or Scottish smallpipes. Please note that some harmony is required, and merely playing in unison will not be marked. Download Duet for pipes booking form

7. Pipe and song - The Jimmy Wilson Memorial Cup 13:50pm
One piper, one song. Piper to sing whilst accompanying themselves on the bellows pipes. Download Pipe and Song booking form.

8. Duet for Pipe and Voice - The Judy Barker Trophy 14:15pm
One piper to accompany one singer for one song. Download Duet for pipes and voice booking form

9. Duet for pipes and other instrument - Dunfermline Tassie 15:15
Maximum 4 minutes (minimum 3 minutes). Any Scottish bellows blown pipe played with any other instrument other than a bagpipe. Download Duet for pipes and other instrument booking form

10. Open solo for Lowland/Border pipes - Hamish Moore Cup 16:00
Maximum 4 minutes (minimum 3 minutes). For anyone except those entered in Novice, Intermediate or Seasoned pipers classes. Download Border pipes Open solo booking form


Except where stated, all classes are open to either Border pipes or Scottish Smallpipes.
With the exception of the Duet for Pipes and Other Instrument, competitors will be allowed to enter the Duet competitions only once. Competitors may enter the Duet for Pipes and Other Instrument twice as long as they play a different instrument with a different person the second time.
The music for new compositions should be provided (manuscript or tape recording) for potential inclusion in Common Stock.
Competitors using sheet music will not be marked by the judges, except in the New Composition category where sheet music is allowed.

Tuning up. Competitors should tune up off-stage as far as possible, and it is expected that minimum tuning will be required once they are on stage. To assist the judge and audience, please ensure there is a gap between tuning and starting your set. Once tuned, competitors must introduce themselves and their programme to the audience.

Timing: Although a 15 second overrun is permitted, points will be deducted at the rate of 5 marks per 15 seconds after this. Competitors will be disqualified for a one minute overrun. There will be a minimum time restriction for each category, with the exception of the 'New Composition Class'. This will be one minute less than the maximum, with marks deducted for under-running the same as for overruns. Time your pieces!!!

Judging. A nominated judge will award a maximum of 75 marks. Players will also be judged by 5 members of the audience, who will award up to 5 marks each based on overall performance, musicality and enjoyment.. Anyone who is closely connected to a competitor should not act as a judge for the competition in which that competitor is participating.

Guidelines for judging the Martin Lowe Memorial Trophy

This class has been introduced specifically to promote Lowland and Border Music.In reviewing performances two main criteria will be given priority.

1. Repertoire.

The repertoire should be recogniseably Lowland or Border. Sources are many and varied but suggestions could be from :-
- one of the many books published of Lowland and Border music.
- songs from the Lowlands and Borders.
- personal research.

2. Style.

The style is more difficult to define but as a guide, the following points should be taken into consideration.
- The performance should salute to the tradition by following the melody and phrasing of the original as closely and sensitively as possible.
- The gracings or ornaments employed in the interpretation of the piece should be used in such a way as to enhance the music. The player should not feel hide bound by gracings which may have been learned in the teaching of Highland Pipes but should be encouraged to be creative in this process.
- Close attention should be paid to the social context of the music e.g. dance music should be played at appropriate tempi and rhythms.
- The competitors will be encouraged to, and they should feel free to, interprate the music in a very personal and individual style .