Píobaire, An, Volume 4, Issue 48, Page 10

Píobaire, An, Volume 4, Issue 48, Page 10
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periodical Publisher
Na Píobairí Uilleann
periodical Editor
Chairman, NPU
periodical Title
Píobaire, An
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10~ South Western Pipers ~South Western Association of UilleannPipers 2008 Tionól For the third year in a row, the SWAUPtionól was to be held at The BossineyHouse Hotel, near Tintagel, Cornwall.The area, being steeped in legends of KingArthur and the round table, and with theAtlantic Ocean with in walking distance, isthe perfect place to draw pipers from the fourcorners of the UK. This year’s teacher andinvited guest was Emmett Gill, the younggifted piper living in Dublin although origi-nally from London via a stint in university inBelfast. Most pipers met up for dinner on the Fridaynight. A splendid buffet was soon demolishedand onto the bar for some “Doom Bar” Beer.After a few ales to loosen the tongue, thereappeared to be a Mexican standoff, who wasgoing to be first to start the session?? Anintrepid piper strapped up and so itbegan…….. by the time the first 8 bars hadbeen played the majority of pipers joined in.The session lasted a good 5 hours with piperscoming and going and rejoining without thetunes breaking. Eventually came a halt to pro-ceedings and with the chance of a few hourssleep we all retired for the night, anticipatinga good day to come.Saturday started with a hearty breakfast andfirst into the classes were the beginnersgroup. Emmett began by playing the tune hehad chosen very slowly allowing us to recordit. Then he wrote out the tune and we all hadsomething to follow as well as listen to play.This seemed to be very effective as the begin-ners managed to get the bones of two tunes in45 mins!! Mind you, there was only two ofthem at the start. The 45 mins went in a blurwith two happy pipers looking forward to theafternoon session as they headed off to prac-tice their newly acquired skills.Next came some coffee and then the interme-diate group were put through their paces byEmmett. Emmett picking the tunes that weretaxing to play but at the same time giving thepipers encouragement and the confidence toplay. By the smiles on their faces and the ani-mated banter Emmett had motivated thegroup.Next came the advanced class and from thecacophony of beautiful noise that camethrough the walls, Emmett was working hismagic. Alan Burton was at the reed makingtable doing his usual wonders makingmediocre chanters sound magical and goodchanters sound exquisite. Alan worked tire-lessly throughout the Saturday and Sundaymorning.A break for lunch and a chance to catch upand have a chat between the groups was soonover and once more back into the fold. Theafternoon followed the path of the morningwith each group trying to squeeze as muchout of their 45 minutes with Emmett as theycould. Emmett was genuinely passionateabout the pipes and the music, and this rubbedoff on everyone.Most pipers retired to the bar for some coffeeand tea while a few went and had a quiet ses-sion and some took advantage to have a quick
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Píobaire, An, Volume 4, Issue 48

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