Píobaire, An, Volume 1, Issue 4, Page 2

Píobaire, An, Volume 1, Issue 4, Page 2
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periodical Publisher
Na Píobairí Uilleann
periodical Editor
Chairman, NPU
periodical Title
Píobaire, An
volume Number
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( 3)THE FIRST PIPERS ,rCLUB IN DUBLINThe first pipers club in Dublin was founded in 1900, shortly after the Cork club had come intoexistence. The preservation of the first minute book in the museum of the Christian Brothers Schools,North Richmond St 0 , Dublin, enables us to follow the activities of the club in the first years of itsexistence. An inscription on the inside front cover records for us the facts of its preservation:This I?linute bopk of the Cumann na bPioba is presented to Rev Bro Allen, OConnellSchools, where Eamonn Ceannt was educated Up to his retirethent on his marriage in 1904,Eamonn acted as Hon. Sec. and entered the minutes in lr sh., I was Hon. Treas, at that period.3, 2. 52 A ne b. E. CeanntThe first minutes entered in the book relate to a meeting held on 17 February, 1900 Those presentincluded Eamonn Ceannt, Tom Rowsome, P. Archer and many nonpipers such as Cathal McGorvey,a reciter of fame and author of The Star of the County Down and The Devil and the Bailiff,who supported the club as another manifestation of the national reawakening which, in fact, hadinspired its foundation. Mr. Nally, a member of the Committee, gave a lecture on the Union Pipes(This term is consistently used in the minutes, the word uilleann not appearing at all). The followingextracts relating to the lecture show that changes have occurred in the vocabulary of pipers in theintervening seventy years. The references to the various pitches of the chanter suggest that thelecturer may have been chosen perhaps more for his ability to speak than for his having a practicalknowledge of his subject:A concert chanter, i.e. one of standard pitch, measures 14 inches from one end to the other,A one note chanter, i ,e. 1 note flatter than standard, 15 in, A 2 note chanter is generallyconsidered the best pitch.The reeds of the 2 smaller regulators are theoretically the same as the reed of the seinseoir.Pinch note is the name given to the note obtained with double strength and is one octavehigher than the corresponding note obtained in the ordinary way.The pipes are tuned by tuning the tenor drone to the bottom D of chanter and testing withtop D,Tom Rowsome illustrated on the pipes single, double and slip jigs. These minutes concludedon a traditional note: The meeting then adjourned, some to Con ODwyers and some home.Meetings were held weekly on Fridays. When the business of the committee had concluded aclass in piping was held. This class and a dancing class were regular features of the weekly meeting.Members absenting themselves from these meetings had to pay a fine of 4d.; those present contributed2d. towards the rent of the rooms 4.V.00).Cumann na bPiobairi was the official title of the club and Irish was, as far as possible, to bethe official language of business. The declared objectives of the club were the cultivation andpreservation of Irish Pipe Music; the popularisation of the various forms of Irish pipes and thecultivation of Irish step dancing in connection with Irish pipe music. The annual subscription was5/, payable half yearly in advance (1 11.01). A book was to be kept in which each membershould record any information he might acquire relative to the pipes or pipe music. (27JV , OO).This book, if it ever did exist, has not survived. If the enthusiasm of our own members in furnishinginformation for this bulletin is any yardstick no great loss has been sustained. The entries couldhardly have extended beyond a page or two.The piping and dancing classes were required to be self supporting, One can see thenecessity for this ruling in an entry which recorded the receipt of a considerable number of member ssubscriptions and declared, with on evident note of relief, that the club then owed only six weeksrent (1O,X, O2) , Considerable discussion preceeded the decision to engage a teacher for the pipes.Nicholas Marky was selected for the post, subject to his acceptance of the terms of 5/ per nightfor any number of pupils up to five, another 1/ for each pupil above that number. The classes wereto meet every second week and the fee for tuition was 2/6 monthly, payable in advance, Markywas to be paid at the end of the month, The class was held in a room provided by the Gaelic Leaguein their headquarters at 24 Upper OConnell Street (16. lX.02).A reference to a request to the Cork club to pay an affiliation fee of 10/6 suggests that theDublin club was seeking to establish its prece ence over the southern club although the latter pre-dated it (15JI , 01). Later efforts were aimed at creating a national organisation. The Co k clubwas invited to adopt as its official title The Pipers Club (Cork Branch), the Dublin club to be calledIfe Pipers Club (Dublin), (26.V.Ol).2
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Píobaire, An, Volume 1, Issue 4

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