Pipers pitch up for contest

Pupils from Aberdeenshire schools will be competing at the Scottish Schools Pipe Band Championships.
Pupils from Aberdeenshire schools will be competing at the Scottish Schools Pipe Band Championships.

Pupils from Aberdeenshire will be pitching their musical skills against youngsters from across Scotland when they compete in world’s largest schools piping and drumming competition.

A record number of entries, including 72 school pipe bands and freestyle ensembles as well as 14 quartets for young pipers and drummers, are to go head-to-head at Scottish Schools Pipe Band Championships (SSPBC) in Edinburgh this Sunday.

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The competition – which attracts about 800 youngsters from around 120 schools, including Aboyne Academy, Alford Academy, Banff Academy and Lathallan School – was established to encourage the formation of school pipe bands. It features taster grades for youngsters with no competing experience, as well as providing a forum for schools competing at the highest level.

Scott Niven, piping instructor at a number of Aberdeenshire schools, said: “The schools are very excited at the prospect of participating in the championships.

“We know the standards of musicianship will be very high across the categories, but the pupils have been busy rehearsing over the last few weeks to do our best to bring home success to their schools.

“Whatever happens, we will ensure we both enjoy and learn from the experience of performing at such a prestigious competition – and for the band and our young musicians to continue their love of piping and drumming.”