America’s annual bagpiping celebration
Joseph Stewart Wins the 2010 US Junior Solo Bagpiping Championship
Sixteen-year-old Joseph Stewart of Seattle, Washington wins the 2010 Balmoral Classic US Junior Solo Bagpiping Championship and fourteen-year old Quinn McCormack of Pembroke, Massachusetts wins the 2010 Balmoral Classic US Junior Solo Drumming Championship.
The national competitions, which were open for public attendance, took place Saturday, November 13, 2010 at Mellon Institute in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
They are the only solo bagpiping and bagpipe band drumming competitions in the US exclusively for those under 18 years of age. Entrants were required to apply and meet strict standards based upon amateur upper grade competitive successes.
The competitions are part of the Balmoral Classic, a US celebration of Highland bagpiping and drumming held annually in Pittsburgh. The fifth Balmoral Classic is scheduled for November 11 and 12, 2011.
Bagpiping entrants competed in two styles: Pìobaireachd, the classical music of Highland bagpiping, and MSR (march, strathspey, and reel), the traditional bagpipe competition medley. Drumming entrants competed in two styles: Hornpipe & Jig and MSR. The Overall is a combination of scores from Pìobaireachd and MSR for piping, and Hornpipe & Jig and MSR for drumming.
The competitors were awarded points for tempo, tone, rhythm, execution and expression by piping and drumming adjudicators, senior champions themselves. The piping judges were Willie McCallum of Scotland, Donald McBride of the Republic of Ireland, and Andrew Carlisle of Northern Ireland. The snare drumming judge was Jim Sim of Peotone, Illinois.
Winners were announced at Balmoral Classic’s evening concert featuring the performance ensemble Battlefield Band of Scotland in a farewell concert by the band's remaining founder Alan Reid.
Trophies, medals, prizes and scholarships were presented to the first- through fifth-place winners. As Overall winners, McCormack performed his Hornpipe & Jig set and Stewart performed his MSR set in front of the concert audience. Battlefield Band also invited McCormack on stage to accompany them to a set of brisk reels. Stewart received the Ambassador Dan Rooney Trophy and a two-week full scholarship to Balmoral School of Piping & Drumming. McCormack was awarded the David L. Peet Memorial Trophy, a Premier HTS 800 snare drum donated by Henderson Imports of Traverse City, Michigan, and a two-week full scholarship to Balmoral School of Piping & Drumming.
Stewart was also the first-place winner for Pìobaireachd and received the Clan Donald Trophy and a set of hand-crafted Inveran bagpipes from Scotland. Seventeen year-old Daniel Pisowloski of Canterbury, Connecticut, was the first-place winner for MSR in piping for which he received the E.W. Littlefield, Jr. Trophy and a set of McCallum bagpipes from Scotland.
Support for the Balmoral Classic of 2010 was made possible, in part, by grants from Clan Donald Educational and Charitable Trust, The Heinz Endowments, RK Mellon Family Foundation, and the Sage Foundation. Additional support was provided by 84 Lumber, Archive Movie Network, Birdsfoot Golf Club, Bruegger’s, Caliban Book Shop, Calliope: The Pittsburgh Folk Music Society, Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh, Classic Equestrian Riding School, Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council, Henderson’s Pipe & Drum Supplies, Inveran Bagpipe Makers, Ireland Institute of Pittsburgh, Irish Design Center, Ligonier Highland Games, MacLellan Bagpipes, McCallum Bagpipes, Max’s Allegheny Tavern, Meade Custom Drumming Supplies, Mullaney’s Harp & Fiddle Irish Pub, Peppi’s, Piper’s Pub, Pipers Choice, Pipers Cove, Pittsburgh Firefighters Memorial Pipe Band, Pittsburgh Flight Training Center, Pittsburgh Police Emerald Society Pipes & Drums, Pittsburgh Snax & Nut Company, Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, Pittsburgh Trophy Company, St. Andrew’s Society of Pittsburgh, St. Brendan’s Crossing, Sandy St. James, Scott’s Highland Services, Soergel Orchards, The Claddagh Irish Pub, The Parador, The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, The Priory, Radelet McCarthy Polletta Architects, The Saturday Light Brigade, and Thistle & Pine.
Balmoral School of Piping & Drumming is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit educational organization founded and maintained in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania since 1979. The school conducts one and two week-long sessions in bagpipe music at college campuses throughout the US each summer, bringing together world champion Highland piping and drumming instructors for students beginning through advanced. It is the Balmoral School’s mission “to raise the standard and promote the appreciation of bagpipe music in the USA by providing world class instruction, cultivating excellence in youth, presenting innovative musical events, and fostering tradition.”
2010 US Junior Solo Bagpiping Championship Winners
2010 US Junior Solo Drumming Championship Winners
Hornpipe & Jig
2010 US Junior Solo Bagpiping Championship Entrants
1. Joseph Biggs, Princeton, Ilinois
2010 US Junior Solo Drumming Championship Entrants
1. Wesley Blevins, Louisville, Kentucky