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Pipe Band

The Scots College Pipe Band has a history almost as long as Scots College itself. It was founded in 1925 under the direction of the then Headmaster, Mr J.H. Murdoch.

The Scots College Pipe Band holds a special place within the Scots College community, as it brings together students from the Junior, Middle, and Senior Schools based on talent rather than age. This unique composition of students of different ages sets the band apart and makes it somewhat exceptional in the country.

The band's connection to the Ferguson Tartan is significant, as it was bestowed upon the College by Governor General Sir Charles Ferguson. He sent his personal piper to teach the boys at Scots, solidifying the bond between the band and the College.

The Pipe Band is a dynamic and integral part of the College. In addition to serving as a public relations feature, it offers students the opportunity to learn a musical instrument, participate in a disciplined musical ensemble, and contribute to the community through performances.

The band performs regularly at College and community events, as well as state and civic parades. Its members also compete both as a band and individually at local and national levels. Currently, Scots College enters a Grade 4 Competition Band in local and national competitions.

The College provides tuition and scholarships for piping and drumming. Regular classes and practices are conducted, partly during College hours and partly after school. Additionally, residential weekend camps are held, offering intensive training to band members before they participate in contests throughout the year.

Generally, it takes about one and a half years for a student to become proficient enough to play as a piper or a drummer in the band, although there have been exceptions. The College offers pipe sets for hire and provides drums for the drum corps. Learners need a chanter for piping and a set of sticks and a pad for drumming. Band uniforms are provided by the College on a long-term basis at an annual charge.

The Pipe Band receives a regular grant from the Board of Governors to cover major uniform and instrument replacements. Any earnings the band receives from public performances go towards equipment maintenance or travel expenses for contests.

Being a member of the Scots College Pipe Band requires a significant commitment from students and their parents. However, most members are able to balance band membership with sports and maintain a strong academic programme. Regular attendance at practices and parades is essential, but band members find enjoyment in the disciplined approach, the diverse activities, and the challenges that come with being part of the Pipe Band.