Wednesday, August 4, 2010
This past weekend was the Pacific Northwest Highland Gathering in Enumclaw Washington. I competed with the Wasatch and District grade 3 and was generally happy with how the band played. We received many positive comments from judges and spectators alike; however, there is always much room for improvement. Competitive piping is as much a mental game as it is physical. Sometimes a split second loss of focus can be the difference between where you want to be and where you actually end up. The band is making huge strides this year and I am hoping that all the pieces will come together next month at Pleasanton, which is the largest and final competition of the year for us.
Other than playing, the highlight of the weekend was listening to all of the world class pipers and drummers. The current world champions, SFU, as well as the very impressive grade 1 band, Dowco Triumph Street were in attendance and put on a spectacular show for all who were lucky enough to witness it.
The professional solo class was very well represented and the competitions were a real treat. The highlight for me was listening to the professional piobaireachd competition. World famous piper, Jack Lee, won the competition with a captivating performance of “The Unjust Incarceration”. Piobaireachd played at this level has an amazing ability to move the listener. Many members of the newly formed Utah Piobaireachd Society were in attendance and soaking in all of the world class performances.
We have the rare treat as pipers to be able to rub shoulders with the very best in the world and this weekend was no exception. The playing was an extremely high caliber and several performances will certainly leave a lasting impact on me as I continue to strive to be a better player.