Nicol - Brown Amateur Invitational

The 33rd Nicol-Brown Amateur Invitational
Piping Competition

October 10, 2015
St. Paul’s Episcopal Church
21 Hackett Blvd.
Albany, NY 12208

Judge: Callum Beaumont

Reader for the Piobaireachd: Daniel Cole

Master of Ceremonies: Donald F. Lindsay

View a pdf of the 2015 program.

View a sampling of photos through the years or browse through our Facebook photostream.

Overall Nicol-Brown Championship

  1. KEVIN McLEAN (18 points)
    Prizes: airfare to compete in London in November 2016, sponsored by the New Hampshire Highland Games & Festival, and by Steve Porter; and an McC2 pipe chanter with a custom-designed sole, donated by McCallum Bagpipes.
  2. TYLER BRIDGE (17 points)
    Prize: A Peter Henderson Blackwood Pipe Chanter donated by Henderson’s Ltd.
  3. CHRISTIAN RHOADS (11 points)
    Prize: A $200 piping scholarship sponsored by Doreen Forney in memory of P/M Angus Macdonald, 1st Battalion Scots Guards.
  4. MAEGHAN BIELSKI (10 points)
    Prize: A $150 piping scholarship sponsored by Ben Bhraggie House Ltd.

Robert Nicol-Robert Brown Chalice for Piobaireachd

  1. KEVIN McLEAN
    (“The Red Speckled Bull”)
    Prize: A bound Piobaireachd Society Collection donated by Jon Maffett from The Piper’s Hut.
  2. TYLER BRIDGE
    (“The Big Spree”)
    Prize: Binneas is Boreraig and Donald MacDonald’s Collection of Piobaireachd sponsored by Bonnie Rideout.
  3. LAUREANO THOMAS-SANCHEZ
    (“The Battle of Auldearn” No. 1)
    Prize: A $75 gift certificate for The Piper’s Hut sponsored by Joseph Stewart and family.
  4. CHRISTIAN RHOADS
    (“MacLeod’s Controversy”)
    Prize: Piobaireachd Fingerwork by Jim McGillivray and A.G. Kenneth’s Collection, Book 5 donated by Duncan’s Highland Supply.
  5. MAEGHAN BIELSKI
    (“Lament for the Departure of King James”)
    Prize: Sight Readable Ceol Mor by Dugald MacNeill and The Piobaireachd Society’s Collection of Ceòl Mór Composed during the 20th Century donated by Duncan’s Highland Supply.

William Ross Challenge Targe MSR Competition

  1. JAMES DYSON
    (“Leaving Lunga,” “Loch Loskin,” and “The Sound of Sleat”)
    Prize: A McCallum long blackwood practice chanter with engraved sole, bowl, and presentation ferrule donated by The Piper’s Dojo.
  2. MAEGHAN BIELSKI
    (“Royal Scottish Pipers’ Society,” “The Islay Ball,” and “The Brown Haired Maid”)
    Prize: A McCallum long plastic practice chanter with Zoomorphic engraved ferrule sponsored by Barb, Erin, and Dan McCarthy.
  3. KEVIN McLEAN
    (“Miss Elspeth Campbell,” “The Ewe wi’ the Crookit Horn,” and “The Smith of Chilliechassie”)
    Prize: Scots Guards Standard Settings of Pipe Music, Volume 2 and The Bagpipe Music of John McLellan 1875-1949 sponsored by Doreen Forney in memory of P/M Angus Macdonald.
  4. TYLER BRIDGE
    (“Donald MacLellan of Rothesay,” “Highland Harry,” and “Thomson’s Dirk”)
    Prize: Scots Guards Standard Settings of Pipe Music, Volume 1 sponsored by Doreen Forney in memory of P/M Angus Macdonald.
  5. CHRISTIAN RHOADS
    (“Colin Thompson,” “John Roy Stewart,” and “Alick C. MacGregor”)
    Prize: Prize: The Bagpipe Music of John MacColl 1860-1943 sponsored by JoAnn Scott.

Donald MacLeod Memorial 6/8 March Competition

  1. TYLER BRIDGE
    (“The Bonawe Highlanders” and “Dundee City Police Pipe Band”)
    Prize: The Donald MacLeod Memorial Silver Buckle created and donated by Stephen Walker of Walker Metalsmiths.
  2. KEVIN McLEAN
    (“Cameron MadFadyen” and “Jean Mauchline”)
    Prize: A $75 gift card for Henderson’s Ltd. sponsored by Joseph Stewart and family.
  3. CHRISTIAN RHOADS
    (“Jean Mauchline” and “Capt. C.R. Lumsden”)
    Prize: A $60 gift card for The Piper’s Dojo sponsored by Betsy and Bruce Douglas.
  4. LAUREANO THOMAS-SANCHEZ
    (“P/M Charles Timmers” and “George Sherriff”)
    Prize: The Gordon Highlanders Pipe Music Collection, Vol. 1 sponsored by Betsy and Bruce Douglas.
  5. JAMES DYSON
    (“The MacNeils of Ugadale” and “All the Blue Bonnets are Over the Border”)
    Prize: Standard Settings of Pipe Music of The Seaforth Highlanders sponsored by Nancy Tunnicliffe.

Dress and Deportment

This prize is a special recognition for the effort and thought put into the presentation of performances, showing respect for the contest and bringing dignity to the music.

(Judged by Donald F. Lindsay)

  1. MAEGHAN BIELSKI
    Prize: The men’s or women’s piping vest of the competitor’s choice from Henderson’s Ltd., sponsored by the Spicer family.

Congratulations!

Each competitor this year received an Airstream Blowpipe donated by Scott’s Highland Services, a Nicol-Brown towel, a framed group photo, and a new edition of the coveted Nicol-Brown lapel pin designed by Charlie Glendinning and sponsored by Steve Porter.

2015 Competitors

Invitations to the Nicol-Brown Competition each year are based on overall rankings and competitive results in the pipers’ home associations, as well as in national and international contests that show the highest standards of amateur piping for Piobaireachd and Light Music. An invitation is held each year for the Grade 1 Piper of the Day at The New Hampshire Highland Games & Festival, provided that piper competed in the Piobaireachd event that day. Nicol-Brown competitors pay their own way to the contest in Albany, or are helped with their travel expenses by their own sponsors and patrons.

  • MAEGHAN BIELSKI (Middleboro, Massachusetts)
    3rd Place out of 81 pipers in the 2015 EUSPBA Grade 1 Overall and Piobaireachd Season Standings as of September 6, 2015.
  • TYLER BRIDGE (Guelph, Ontario)
    1st Place in combined PPBSO Champion Supreme standings for Grade 1 Light Music and Senior Amateur Piobaireachd for 2014 and 2015; Donald MacLeod 6/8 March Champion at the 2014 Nicol-Brown; 2015 Amateur Piper of the Day at Georgetown, Embro, Cambridge, Durham, Maxville, Fergus, and Almonte.
  • ALLYSON CROWLEY-DUNCAN (Latham, New York)
    2nd Place out of 81 pipers in the 2015 EUSPBA Grade 1 Overall and Piobaireachd Season Standings as of September 6, 2015.
  • JAMES DYSON (Dartmouth, Nova Scotia)
    2014 Nicol-Brown Piobaireachd Champion; 1st Place in combined Grade 1 Light Music and Piobaireachd standings for Atlantic Canada for 2013 and 2014, and 3rd Place for 2015.
  • ANDREW HUTTON (Brantford, Ontario)
    2nd Place in combined PPBSO Champion Supreme standings for Grade 1 Light Music and Senior Amateur Piobaireachd for 2015; Amateur Piper of the Day at the 2015 Kingston, Cobourg, and Edinboro, PA Highland Games.
  • KEVIN MCLEAN (Maple Ridge, British Columbia)
    Winner of the BC Pipers’ Association Grade 1 Grand Aggregate for 2015; Grade 1 Aggregate winner at the BCPA Mini Gatherings, the Annual Gathering, Victoria, Bellingham, Kamloops, Portland, and the Pacific Northwest Scottish Highland Games.
  • CHRISTIAN RHOADS (St. Louis, Missouri)
    2015 MWPBA Grade 1 Champion Supreme for Light Music and Piobaireachd; Grade 1 Piper of the Day at the Alma Highland Festival.
  • BLAISE THERIAULT (Halifax, Nova Scotia)
    1st Place in combined Grade 1 Light Music and Piobaireachd standings for Atlantic Canada for 2015.
  • LAUREANO THOMAS-SANCHEZ (Cleveland, Ohio)
    Grade 1 Piper of the Day at the 2015 New Hampshire Highland Games & Festival and the Ohio Scottish Games; Grade 1 winner of the 2015 MWPBA Solo Championship; 1st Place MSR at the 2015 Sandy Jones Invitational.
  • JACK TOOHEY (Newberg, Oregon)
    2nd Place in 2015 BC Pipers’ Association Grade 1 Grand Aggregate standings.

Invited but unable to attend:

  • DYLAN CHRISMER (Alta Loma, California)
    1st Place in the combined 2015 WUSPBA Grade 1 Aggregate standings for Piobaireachd and Light Music as of September 16, 2015.
  • SEAN REGAN (Woodstock, Virginia)
    1st Place out of 81 pipers in the 2015 EUSPBA Grade 1 Overall and Piobaireachd Season Standings as of September 6, 2015.

THANK YOU

The 2015 Nicol-Brown Contest, Concert, and Master Class were made possible by the efforts of many volunteers, donors and sponsors who are generous in their support of amateur piping. We'd love to add your name here:

2015 Dedications

  • Doreen Forney’s donation was given in memory of P/M Angus Macdonald.
  • Robert Mitchell’s donation was given in memory of P/M Ed Neigh.
  • Steve Porter’s donation was given in gratitude and appreciation for what Invermark has meant to him and to countless other pipers and drummers over the years. Keep making wonderful music and magical experiences!
  • Rick Woolard’s donation was given in memory of Ronald Morrison of South Uist.

Please contact Paula Glendinning at 301-980-6990, or speak to one of the other committee members if you would like to donate a prize for next year. We also welcome cash donations if you would like to sponsor a scholarship or help with the expenses of the Nicol-Brown. We are happy to designate your gift with a dedication in honor or in memory of someone. Please let us know if you would like us to add a link or a dedication to your donation listing.

The 2015 Nicol-Brown Chalice Committee

  • Ursa Beckford
  • Daniel Cole
  • Maureen Connor
  • Paula Glendinning
  • Donald F. Lindsay
  • Barbara McCarthy
  • JoAnn Scott
  • Heather Scott-Wisehart
  • Mary Robinson White
  • Kevin Wisehart