Past Events

Goldfields Piping Weekend in Castlemaine, August 2017
Report coming soon...

Goldfields Piping Weekend in Castlemaine, August 2016
"The 2016 annual gathering of the Celtic Piping Club was held Friday 19th to Sunday 21st August.  Some fifteen pipers and enthusiasts from Canberra, the Latrobe Valley, Melbourne, Adelaide, and places in between, came to the town of Maryborough, central Victoria, for this year's event. As usual, it was another fantastic weekend.
Our guest this year was uilleann piper Matt Horsley. Matt very capably conducted workshops on aspects of the music of the bellows blown pipes of Ireland, Scotland, and England. First off (at 9.00 am Saturday!) was a lesson on learning by ear. He taught slip jigs Cummilum (name derives from is cuma liom, meaning 'it's all the same to me') and the curiously titled Throw the Beetle at Her. After morning tea, Matt continued with a presentation on the use and tuning of the regulators. Regulator-tuning can be difficult, tedious, and time-consuming. Matt made it look easy and straight forward with his systematic approach. He then demonstrated some basics of chordal and rhythmic accompaniment. He certainly opened a few ears by playing a G chord through the first part of The Dublin Reel (which is strongly in D) and showing how a chord comprised of G-A-B is not so dissonant, when the intonation is right. Those with small pipes hived off to Geoff Jones' workshop on tips and techniques for tuning and playing.
Sunday morning saw the Celtic Piping Club vote for incorporation and the formation of a committee. With official business completed, Pat Lyons gave a demonstration on making drone reeds from cane and elder. Then a magnificent barbecue lunch before we packed and said our farewells. With our heads full of tunes, happy and tired, we each hit the road, looking forward to next year." - Victor Sacharov

More details can be found in Newsletter #39

Goldfields Piping Weekend in Talbot, August 2015
"The third Talbot weekend was the greatest success yet and has become the signature event of our young club." Colin MacDougall. Special guest Bill Hart travelled with his wife from northern Sydney to demonstrate and display his crafts. Bill demonstrated 18 different sets of bellows and mouth-blown pipes from across the world (many of which he made himself) and delivered an insightful overview to all facets of pipe-making. The weekend attracted 22 people from Vic, SA, NSW & ACT for displays, theory workshops, sessions, a performance soiree and great after-dark tunes in the cellar."

The Rolling Wave by Matt Horsely, 
February 2015
Having recently returned from three months of intensive lessons with master piper Mikie Smyth in Limerick, Ireland, Matt presented a solo concert as a finale to his JUMP Mentoring programme grant from the Australia Council for the Arts. Matt performed a programme of old and new music for uilleann pipes including world premiere Barbaric Yawp by Jeanette Little, Australian premiere Five Etudes for Uilleann Pipes no. 3 - Polymeric Chorale by Dave Flynn and his own composition titled wheelspin.

Goldfields Piping Weekend in Talbot, August 2014
For the second year running, sixteen players of Uilleann Pipes and Scottish Smallpipes travelled from as far as Gippsland, Yackandandah and Adelaide to immerse themselves in a weekend of piping. Highlights of the weekend included a drone reed making workshop with Pat Lyons, demonstrations to two school groups, a Saturday evening 'soiree' for the locals at Bryce's Bistrot and plenty playing and discussion about pipes.

Concert, session and lecture at the National Celtic Festival in Portarlington, Vic, June 2014
The Celtic Piping Club popped up in various places at the National Celtic Festival 2014. Some highlights included the playing of the border pipes by special guest Ali Levak from Feis Ros at the Saturday afternoon concert and a resounding rendition of the Fox Hunter's Chase in uilleann pipes by Nick Martin at the Saturday night session.

Goldfields Piping Weekend and Concert in Talbot, August 2013

Sixteen pipers and partners came together for a fun and friendly weekend of piping in the historic gold rush village, Talbot, just south of Maryborough Victoria. The focus of the weekend was a workshop by James Rigby on the connection between songs and pipe-tunes and also the presentation of a concert to a local audience at the Talbot Town Hall, co-presented with the Taliska Trio. Although the weather outside was cold and raining, the hall was filled with the warmth of the pipe music and dancing in the aisles.


Talbot to host Celtic Concert - article in The Maryborough District Advertiser 26 July 2013.


Launch of the Celtic Piping Club, Portarlington, June 2013

The official launch of the Celtic Piping Club was held at 

the National Celtic Festival on Saturday 8 June 2013 

at St John's Church, Portarlington. A selection of pipers presented a varied programme, showcasing a wide variety of pipes and playing styles.



Scottish Smallpipes Workshops in Warrnambool, April 2013
Part of the South West Coast Piper Drummer Workshops, this weekend included workshops, performance, brunch and a session.

Piping in Central Victoria, January 2013

A full week of Uilleann pipe workshops with Pat Lyons at the Celtic Southern Cross Summer School followed by a small pipers gathering at the Newstead Live! Folk Festival.

Smallpipes session at Maldon Folk Festival, November 2012
Seven Scottish smallpipers gathered at the crossroads for 2.5 hours of tunes at the 2012 Maldon Folk Festival.

Castlemaine Pipers' Weekend, October 2012

This was a pilot project for the forming of the Celtic Piping Club. This weekend brought pipers 'out of the woodwork' for a friendly and inspiring weekend of sharing tunes, knowledge and laughs. Click here for the event website. Click here to download the report of the weekend.
Merran & Sarah at the Castlemaine weekend.
Merran & Sarah at the Castlemaine Weekend