MEMBERS of Stamperland pipe band are on the lookout for the musicians of tomorrow.
The group is launching a tuition scheme for beginners aged seven to 17 interested in playing, in the hope of preserving the band through future generations of players.
Head tutor and former pipe sergeant Steven Drennan (21) – a member since the tender age of seven – told The Extra: “Our aim is to encourage youngsters to learn how to carry on our tradition.
“We’re offering it to build and strengthen the band, as well as our community”.
Tuition is available for the bagpipes, snare tenor and bass drums, and no musical experience is necessary.
The group will meet Monday nights in Stamperland church, and as beginners reach a higher level they are welcome to join the band, which is currently on grade 3A after working its way up through six competitive seasons.
Steven explained: “As it stands the band is a highly successful 3A band and the gap is too big for learners to play in the big band – the tougher the grades get, the more players struggle and our numbers decrease.
“We hope to pull together a novice juvenile band for under 18s, to get the necessary experience to play in the big band”.
Stamperland pipe band first formed from the 231st Glasgow company of the Boys Brigade, in 1973, and sported the ancient Gunn tartan.
The group took on the name of the area it plays in during the late 80s, and re-launched as a competitive band in 2006.
There are currently 30 members – including Steven, who acted as sergeant for five years – and the piper hopes that the new tuition system will bring more through the ranks. Membership fees cost £20 a month, paid back into the band for equipment – a basic set of pipes costs £700 – music and uniforms.
Tuition starts on November 12 and is free for the first month, allowing young residents (and their parents) a trial period.
Anyone interested in being involved can contact Steven on firstname.lastname@example.org. To find out more about the band, visit www.stamperlandpipeband.co.uk.