“Confidence, confidence – push for it”
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With only days remaining until the Worlds, members of the Simon Fraser University Pipe Band are well practiced and mentally preparing for Saturday’s competition – both rookies and veterans.
Pipe Major Terry Lee encouraged them to stay focused on their individual and group strength. “Confidence, confidence – continue to push for it,” he told them.
The Grade 1 contest, featuring 21 international bands, will be a first for members like drummer Katelyn Garrity of Burnaby and Kevin McLean of Maple Ridge, who each became involved following a summer camp at SFU in 2003.
Both went on to play with the junior Robert Malcolm Memorial Band (RMM) and have been to the world stage in Glasgow before, to compete with its Grade 3 band, in 2007 and 2009. Garrity got the call up to the Grade 1 band last fall, while McLean was elevated in February.
“I’m still waiting for the adrenalin to kick in,” Garrity said during the rehearsal for a Glasgow concert on Thursday. “It’ll probably hit me when I cross the line into the arena on Saturday.”
For others in the band it’s an all too familiar journey. A handful have celebrated all of the band’s six championship wins – Pipe Sergeant Jack Lee, brother Terry, Lead Drummer Reid Maxwell, and pipers Bonnie Bevan, Dani Millar and Derek Milloy. (Jack Lee is from Surrey; Terry Lee, Maxwell and Millar, from Coquitlam; Bevan, from Abbotsford and Milloy, Burnaby).
Both Bevan, of Abbotsford and Millar, of Coquitlam, have acclaimed pipe band husbands in the band – piper Alan Bevan and drummer Duncan Millar. The Millars also have the newest addition to their family – seven-month-old Megan – in tow on this visit.
The band has been making the trek to Scotland since 1983, two years after being official formed, and since the 1990s has consistently placed in the top three bands.