The concept of a National Youth Pipe Band, which would form to undertake
concert like performances was revived by the circulation of a preliminary
concert schedule to Committee Members in late January 2007. Realisation
of the initiative required finance, which was not at that stage
The purpose of the N.Y.P.B. was to bring young pipers and drummers
together in a bond of fellowship and learning, through performance
in concert type events.
In April 2007, funding to assist with the N.Y.P.B. college project
was allocated to the Irish Pipe Band Association by the Arts Council
of Ireland. A definitive concert schedule was adopted and all association
bands were canvassed for members and music was circulated to those
who professed an interest.
Arts Council Grants were forthcoming from 2007-2009 to realise
this project. The College of Piping and Drumming, in collaboration
with N.E.C. of the I.P.B.A., would like to acknowledge the support
of the Arts Council of Ireland, without whose assistance the three
year programme of concerts would not have been possible.
The first concert, entitled Celtic Weave, took place in St. Michael’s
Theatre, New Ross, County Wexford, on Saturday 19th April 2008.
Fifty six (56) youths from fourteen (14) bands performed at this
event which was judged to be a great success.
The programme for the second concert/recital was a development
of the previous one with new and more advanced compositions. Practice
for the concerts took place in a number of centres throughout the
country, primarily in the Munster, North West and in the South East
In early February 2009 the National Youth Pipe Band performed at
the Temple Bar Trad. Fest. in Dublin.
The second ‘in house’ event, the Celtic Notes Concert
was staged in Siamsa Tíre, Tralee, Co Kerry, on Saturday
21th February 2009, to a full house and a very appreciative audience.
Representatives of 15 bands participated in this event and the finale
saw in excess of 100 members of the N.Y.P.B. on stage. The band
finished to a standing ovation.
The final concert in the series was held in an Grianán Theatre,
Letterkenny, Co Donegal on 20th February 2010.
In Letterkenny, history was made when three All Ireland and World
Champion Bands from Co Donegal shared the stage with the NYPB –
a hugely enjoyable event for all participants and a verification
of the principal of people coming together in a ‘bond of fellowship’
The Management Committee of the College decided at an early stage
that our NYPB would accept pipers and drummers of all standards
and would endeavour to bring these players to as high a standard
of playing as possible.
It was also hoped that this generation of pipers and drummers would
avail of the opportunity to form friendships and would receive encouragement
from being involved with their peers in a music making exercise
outside the competition scene or the competition calendar.
This is very much in keeping with the aims of the IPBA – to
encourage the culture and advancement of Piping and Drumming and
promote a bond and fellowship between all Pipers and Drummers.
A positive spin-off from the N.Y.P.B. events, is that a bond did
develop amongst the participants, which is thought to be responsible
for the increase in the number of young people participating in
our local solo contests.
Each of the three concerts was a huge PR success for the Irish
Pipe Band Association and pipe bands in general.
Over the three years of its existence, the young pipers and drummers
of the NYPB came together in a musical celebration of our Pipe Band
Heritage and excelled themselves on each occasion. One hundred and
thirty (130) young pipers and drummers participated in NYPB activities.
In excess of seven hundred people attended the concerts over the
three years, and many of these were from non pipe band backgrounds.
The vast majority of audiences in New Ross, Tralee and Letterkenny
were extremely impressed by the effort and by the musicality of