Jimmy McIntosh Piobaireachd Workshops in Pittsburgh 2023

The Pittsburgh Piping Society (PPS) and Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) will host the first Atelier Jimmy McIntosh MBE Piobaireachd February 24-26, 2023. The workshop will be held at the Cohen University Center at Carnegie Mellon University, 5000 Forbes Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15213. Attendance is restricted to pipers of Competitive Level 3 and above. Pipers of grades 4 and 5 as well as members of the public may register as “observers only” if space permits.

The weekend begins Friday at 7:30 p.m. with a gathering of the Pittsburgh Piping Society, where pipers of all skill levels will perform for their peers. The evening ends with a featured bagpiper playing a longer selection of tunes, including a piobaireachd. Gold medalist and instructor Mike Cusack will be the featured piper on this occasion.

The PPS gathering will take place at a concert hall near CMU. All participating minors must be accompanied by a parent.

On Saturday, world-class instructors Mike Cusack and Andrew Carlisle will lead a masterclass and classroom instruction. Saturday’s session wraps up with performances from this year’s Jimmy McIntosh MBE scholarship recipients, Abby Long and Emmitt LaBelle. The couple will share two new piobaireachd they have been studying since June 2022.

Sunday morning will conclude the workshop (09:30-12:30), still at Carnegie Mellon University.

In addition to the workshop activities, the popular Scottish traditional group Breabach, is in concert near the CMU campus on Saturday night, featuring two top pipers. This is separate from the workshop weekend and is not affiliated with the Pittsburgh Piping Society.

Logistics: Individuals must arrange their own travel and accommodation. There are many hotels and Airbnbs near Carnegie Mellon University. For those traveling by plane, the nearest airport is Pittsburgh International Airport (PIT). There is a paid parking lot next to the Cohen University Center and outdoor parking across from Morewood Avenue (this one is free after 5 p.m. on weekdays and weekends).

The cost for the weekend workshop is $100.00 for attendees. There are several pricing options for watchers only. Space is limited. Needs-based discounts are available. For more information and to register, visit www.pittsburghpipingsociety.org.

The Pittsburgh Piping Society is the charitable organization that facilitates the Jimmy McIntosh MBE Piobaireachd Scholarship. Well-known pipers Andrew Carlisle, Palmer Shonk and Nick Hudson founded the organization in 2014 to allow pipers of all skill levels and backgrounds to perform for each other in an encouraging informal environment – no kilts or uniforms required.

Weekend schedule (approximate)

Friday February 24

  • Arrival in Pittsburgh
  • Pittsburgh Piping Society Rally – 7:30 p.m. – Squirrel Hill Sports Bar’s (adjacent theater). [<10 minutes from campus and accommodation]
  • Opportunity for all bagpipe players to perform. The featured piper will be Mike Cusack. https://www.facebook.com/PittsburghPipingSociety/

Saturday February 25

  • One-Day Workshop – 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. – Carnegie Mellon University, Cohon University Center. Instructors Mike Cusack and Andrew Carlisle. The workshops will take place in two formats:
  1. Master class – students will play bagpipes for an instructor and receive constructive feedback, in the McConomy auditorium.
  2. Classroom – classes where students will learn new music around a table on practice singers, at the Pipes and Drums Office.
  • Scholarship Recital – 4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. – Carnegie Mellon University, McConomy Auditorium
  • Fellows Abby Long and Emmitt LaBelle will each perform a piobaireachd as the cornerstone of their fellowship instruction.
  • Optional activity: BREABACH Concert (tickets not included in the price of the workshop) – 7:30 p.m. – Kelly Strayhorn Theater [<10 minutes from CMU campus] https://www.breabach.com/
    Tickets must be purchased in advance here: https://calliope.secure.force.com/ticket/#/events/a0S8a00000WmPy0EAF

Sunday February 26

  • Morning Workshop – 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. – Carnegie Mellon University
  • Instructors Mike Cusack and Andrew Carlisle. (Same format and locations as Saturday).

Register here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/jimmy-mcintosh-mbe-piobaireachd-workshop-weekend-registration-477693743847

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