EditorialVolume 9, issue 2, April 2013
Na Píobairí Uilleann achieved 2013 Gradam Ceoil – Gradam Aitheantais /Musicians Award
It was very good news to learn how TG4, (the Irish language television service in Ireland) awarded the 2013 Gradam Ceoil – Gradam Aitheantais/Musicians Award to NPU for promoting uilleann piping and related activities. This prominent public award from a TV service with strong links to the music gives further valuable recognition to NPU’s work since our foundation in 1968. The purpose of the Gradam Ceoil award is “to pay tribute to the dedication of those people who have worked tirelessly to ensure the preservation and dissemination of our traditional music, making certain that the next generation will always have access to the music of yesterday and today”.
From the outset, NPU has always worked to promote and develop uilleann piping and this approach has brought so many of us, with no prior history or association with piping into the music scene. Further investment in the Pipes-on Loan scheme as well as the various on-line lessons and similar initiatives are other ways of popularising the art of uilleann piping. The growing internationalisation of NPU over the recent decades has further helped musicians from other art, craft, technological and scientific traditions to contribute their expertise towards the advancement of piping as a world-wide music form developed from firm roots in Irish and related melodic traditions. The increasing numbers of books and other publications, on-line papers, discussion facilities and other initiatives serve to indicate how so many active and motivated members continue in their efforts to improve the quality of pipes and piping in so many places.
The formal Gradam Ceoil award event was held at University of Limerick on Saturday March 30th (Easter Saturday) and was broadcast the following day on TG4.
Recent Leo Rowsome weekend
This busy weekend of high quality music fittingly commemorated the life-work of Leo Rowsome, founder and patron of NPU. His enormous personal contribution and tireless promotion of piping was recalled by the various activities of tuition, recitals, maintenance activities and the showcasing of high class instruments, the Reed-making Book launch and the unveiling of the detailed drawings of several classic sets. These would all have gladdened the hearts of Leo and the other founder members who recognised the need for such tuition, knowledge availability and the opportunities to hear great music.
The Cork Pipers Club Annual Tionól will be held at the SMA Hall, Wilton, Cork City on April 13th & 14th 2013. This event, running now for many years, is always a super weekend of piping, reed making and tuition for all levels, always featuring great sessions and recitals. Be there if you can!
NPU Annual Tionól
Plan ahead for the Tionól to be held again in Listowel Arms, Listowel Co. Kerry, Ireland on 24th to 26th May. Following last year’s great success, another weekend of powerful music, piping activities and information exchange can be expected. Book your accommodation as early as possible.
Annual NPU sponsored cycle from Dublin to Miltown Malbay
It is hoped to get 30 participants this year with a view to raising €31,000 to meet the detailed design cost for the theatre, museum and pipe making training centre in a re-building of 16 Henrietta Street. For more information see www.pipers.ie/events/_Cycle2013.htm. Valuable sponsorship and participation will achieve this goal in the way the past three years helped fund much needed training in pipe making at the PipeCraft training centre in Clonshaugh. Consider sponsoring a cyclist and help make Henrietta St. HQ an even greater asset for the world of uilleann piping. If you are living in the greater Dublin area and physically fit, give some thought to the feasibility of getting sponsorship and doing the cycle yourself!
See the calendar of events page for other organised piping activities worldwide.
Dave Hegarty, Chairman