Jan 21, 2019

What a great start to 2019!

Jim Barrie was our judge and featured performer.  He had quite a task as we had 19 competitors this time!  Competition stretched past the beginning of the evening program, yet everyone had a good time because...you can never have too much bagpiping!

After a grueling afternoon and evening of judging, Jim entertained the crowd with several pipe tunes. 

He played his famous "Donald MacLeod"
hornpipe to the delight of the audience.  
His wife, Elsie, was on hand to sell some of these beautiful music books and CDs.

If you weren't there, here's  a little of what you missed!

The Eugene Highlanders were the Featured Band of the evening.  Under the leadership of Eric Albert, they performed a romping set of marches and toe-tapping tunes.  They added nice harmonies to some well-known standards, and performed really tight.  A highpoint was their rendition of a lovely slow air in which Eric started solo and then the band joined in.  It was beautiful and I wish I had recorded it so you could see it here.  Another reason to come to OPS!  Thank you, Eugene Highlanders Pipe Band!

Drummers in Action

The next generation of pipers enjoying the Eugene Highlanders and thinking "Maybe that will be me someday!"

Local Hero was Marco Caturegli from the Eugene Highlanders. 

 He had just played a full Piobaireachd in Grade 1 competition and then performed for the crowd.  (And then continued to play with the Eugene Highlanders!)  Whew!  Talk about stamina!

Marco came late to the world of bagpiping beginning in 1991 when he heard a busker in Victoria, British Columbia.  He moved from Mexico to Seattle in 2000 and started lessons with Jori Chisholm.  By 2003 he had been promoted to Grade 1 status.  It just goes to show you that it's never too late to start! 

Thank you for the music, Marco!

As mentioned earlier, there were 19 competitors!
Three on chanter, three for Grade 5, nine in Grade 4, one in Grade 2 and three fabulous pipers for the Grade 1 Piobaireachd.

David Brock competes in Grade 5 with his 2/4 march.

Please check out the Results page to see who won!

Ralph Drew warms up for his jig in Grade 2.

Flint Yoder prepares for
Grade 4 Piobaireachd Ground and 1st Variation.

And of course, there was fun and laughter with friends!

Michael Hubbard and Mylinda Humble...what are they up to now? wonders Denny Weber and Tom Watts.
Emcee Eila Chisholm welcomes the audience and introduces the performers.

OPS Board Member Tim Riddle welcomed Member Ginny Barry and her friend Mary.
Shara Maikranz is all smiles AFTER her competition!
(Does Tim know she got 1st place in Grade 5?)
Dan Dorsett competed in Grade 4 Piobaireachd -- and looks
happy it's over!
Two of the nine Grade 4 competitors
Steve Fowler from Corvallis and Robert Johnston ALL THE WAY FROM MEDFORD!
Speaking of Medford, here are three happy pipers with their Colin Kyo bagpipes made
by Murray Huggins in Medford, Oregon
(We should start a Colin Kyo Pipe Band!  Murray, will you be our Pipe Major?)

Tom Rankin, Douglas Lane, Charlotte Lane and Norma Rankin are loyal OPS supporters.  Thank you!

 And if hearing music wasn't enough to get you to OPS, look at
what Colin MacKenzie brought to share--

 This is at least 125 years old and was written by James MacDonald, the piper for Andrew Carnegie.

A Tune written for Oregon

The Highlands of Oregon

I wonder who the featured performer and band will be for the next OPS on February 16th?

Ed McIlwaine 


 Clan Macleay Pipes and Drums

See you on February 16th!  Competition starts at 4:30 and the evening program begins at 7:30!

Jan 13, 2019

Happy New Year!

2019 will be an exciting year for OPS!

January OPS Meeting

Saturday - January 19

James Barrie will be our Featured Performer

OPS is pleased to have James A Barrie as our featured performer and judge at our first meeting of the new year! James Barrie was taught bagpipes by his father, William Barrie, a pupil of renowned Pipe Majors John McDougall Gillies and Robert Reid. He is an authority of the Cameron style of Piobaireachd. In 2013 Jim gave a presentation of how he was taught in the Cameron style by his father, to the Piobaireachd Society in Scotland at their annual conference.
Jim was playing at a professional level by the age of 13, and in addition to being a successful solo competitor, played with several prominent New Zealand pipe bands, including the Pipes and Drums of Innes Tartan. He was Pipe Major of the Auckland Police Pipe Band for 7 years before his return to Canada. Jim went on to produce and record piping, dance, and folk music. His innovative albums Ancient Piobaireachd Volumes I-IV were a breakthrough in the piping world, combining his father’s canntaireachd singing with background accompaniment. His pipe compositions which appear in his book A Lifetime of Compositions have been universally played: they are regularly heard on the competition field, and have been recorded on other instruments as well as bagpipes. Jim continues to compose and record at his Ceol Mor Studio, and is an active performer, adjudicator and teacher.

Featured Band - The Eugene Highlanders

Begun in 1953, founding members included Hector Smith, Pipe Major from Medicine Hat, Canada, Andrew Henderson, piper from Rothsay, near Glasgow, Scotland,  Hollis (Holly) Hill and Pipe Sergeant Bill Alexander Gloria Allen, Canadian trained dancer and instructor, joined band 1955. Piper Phil White became band manager. 

Originally the Eugene Highlanders Police Bagpipe Band (sponsored by the Eugene Police Department) and in 1957 were appointed the official Governor's Foot Guard (Governor's Guard) by Governor Robert B. Holmes. As such they played to welcome Senator John Kennedy to Eugene in 1958 and at other ceremonial occasions on behalf of several Oregon governors.

The Highlanders took many trophies for parades and celebrations throughout the state, from Astoria to Tillamook, Salem, Albany, Sheridan, Powers, Bandon, Florence and Walport, Pendleton and Burns, even as far south as Happy Camp and Dunsmuir in California.

The Highlanders wear Mackenzie kilts in honor of Oregon's Mackenzie river.
Hector Smith remained pipe major for well over fifty years until his death in January '08, making him the longest running pipe major in North America and perhaps the world. His wife, Mary Smith, teacher and Dance Sergeant, passed in January '09.

Local Hero - Marco Caturegli

In Marco's own words:
While visiting Victoria, BC in the summer of 1991, I first heard the Great Highland Bagpipe being played by a busker on the street. Instantly I asked where I could purchase one. Following his indications I ended up at a music store and purchased a practice chanter with a "teach yourself" kit and, unfortunately, a Pakistani made bagpipe; but I was lucky enough to receive 1 Lb of true Scottish oats with the deal. Upon returning home to Mexico City I started teaching myself, dedicating 2-3 hours per day on the practice chanter. Eventually I was able to take lessons from World Class players such as Eric Rigler, Angus J. MacLellan , PM Angus MacDonald, John Angus Smith.

In 1997 I was a founding member of the "St. Patrick's Battalion Pipe Band" (first of its kind in Mexico), to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the "heroic gesture" of Irish and Scottish soldiers which joined the Mexican army in the US-Mexico War of 1847. Pipping became my profession and together with the band, traveled throughout Mexico and Central America playing for whiskey distiller events, political events in the presence of presidents and ambassadors, and celebrities.

When I moved to WA state in 2000, my bagpiping reached a new level. Thanks to the tutelage and expertise of Jori Chisholm, I won many awards in competitions and was promoted to Grade 1 in 2003 by the Washington and British Columbia Pipers Associations. Putting competitions aside, I focused my efforts on completing a graduate degree in Acupuncture at Bastyr University and creating a family. We now live in Creswell, OR where I provide Acupuncture services, teach bagpipe lessons and play for private engagements. I also play with the Eugene Highlanders Pipe Band.

Be sure to checkout the Competition page as there have been changes made to the starting time AND the required pieces for the lower grades.  See you on the 19th!