media release

“Pitch perfect” weather shines on practice

August 10, 2011

Marianne Meadahl (in Scotland) 44-742-648-7107;
Steve Ray (in Scotland) 44-742-649-5319;

Photos on Flickr Video on YouTube
Scotland 2011 - Practice Day 2  

A second sunny day gave the Simon Fraser University Pipe Band a running start to its practice schedule this week in Stirling, Scotland, leading up to Saturday’s Worlds.

But while thankful for the lack of rain so far, sweat from a bearing sun increased moisture inside the bagpipes, which were often in need of draining.

The weather conditions made it an ideal day for a small crowd to pull out lawn chairs and cameras and catch a glimpse of the six-time world champion band in action.

The two-hour session gave ample time for rehearsing the medley along with components of the March, Strathsey and Reel, the key components of Saturday’s competition.

As always, senior members of the band lept from player to player with tuners and a ready ear in a constant effort to reach and maintain a pitch as close to perfection as possible.

The forecast, meanwhile, is for rain for the next few days, meaning the band will be forced to practice indoors.

“We’ve been fortunate with our start,” says Pipe Sergeant Jack Lee. “But it’s the other side of the coin that we need to be prepared for.”

A “plan B” scenario if rain falls on competition day means incorporating ways to keep the pipes warm and dry, and the possibility is constantly on Pipe Major Terry Lee’s radar, given the quickly changing Scottish skies.

The band heads into Glasgow tomorrow morning for a sound check in advance of their performance at the Pipes of Peace concert. A practice somewhere is Glasgow is also in the works.

They’ll wind things up Friday afternoon in Stirling and on Saturday at 9 a.m. will head to Glasgow Green for the world championships (streamed live by the BBC at

One of 21 Grade 1 bands competing, they’ll play twice in the afternoon and await results later in the day.

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