NPC appoints Mulhearn as Head of Piping Studies

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The National Piping Centre today appointed John Mulhearn as its Head of Piping Studies. John, pictured, takes over from Finlay MacDonald who held the post for many years and who took the helm as the Glasgow-based organisation’s Director of Piping at the end of May.

John Mulhearn has worked as a member of the NPC team since 2008 and has very recently been awarded a Master’s Degree in Scottish Music. He is also a respected producer and composer with a handful of innovative and inventive solo albums to his credit, his most recent recording being the acclaimed The Pipe Factory. John is a member of the Tryst piping ensemble and The Big Music Society, a multi-platform musical venture that seeks to broaden the appeal of ceòl mòr.

John was taught initially by his father, Brian and then Angus J. MacLellan at the College of Piping. He later became one of the College’s evening class and seasonal school teachers. Competitively, although he had some success – he was runner-up in the Gold Medal at the 2012 Argyllshire Gathering and was a member of the Spirit of Scotland Pipe Band. However, in recent years the 36-year-old eschewed competitive piping for performance.

Director of Piping, Finlay MacDonald said: “I’m delighted to welcome John as our new Head of Piping Studies. He is one of the most original pipers I know and he will be a key part of the team here. I’m very much looking forward to working with him.”

• ‘Let piping flourish’ – read John’s most recent blog here.

In June, Finlay Johnston was appointed Head Piping Teacher at the Glasgow-based centre of piping excellence. Steven Blake was appointed Director of the National Youth Pipe Band of Scotland in April.


Staying with the National Piping Centre, the organisation is now offering one-to-one early evening lessons. The lessons will be run online for the time being.

The lessons are available from 5.00pm-10.00pm and they kick off next week. Full details can be found HERE.