Registrations open for the online Balmoral Winter Workshop in February 2024


Balmoral’s upcoming Winter Workshop will be a 3-day remote-learning session, held via Zoom from February 2 – 4, 2024. The instructors will be Robert Mathieson, Derek Midgley, and Andrew Carlisle. The cost is $275 USD.

Students who refer new students to us will receive $50 off the price of the workshop for every new student referred. Instruction will be provided in small classes, as well as one-on-one sessions with instructors.

Bookings should be made at the Balmoral School of Piping website here.

•Derek Midgley, Robert Mathieson and Andrew Carlisle.

Instructor bios:

Robert Mathieson (Hamilton, Scotland) is a composer of pipe music, as well as an award-winning Pipe Major. He served as Pipe Major of the Shotts and Dykehead Caledonia Pipe Band of North Lanarkshire, Scotland from 1986-2010. The band won 30 major championships under his leadership and was a 5-time winner of the World Pipe Band Championships.

Derek Midgley (New Jersey, USA) has won the B Marches & Silver Medal at the Northern Meeting, 2nd in the Highland Society of London Gold Medal at Oban; Dunvegan Medal, 6/8 Marches & 2/4 Marches at Dunvegan. Has also won, the Piobaireachd Society Gold Medal and Bar to the Piobaireachd Society Gold Medal at Maxville (Canada), Overall at the US Piping Foundation, and the Piobaireachd at The Metro Cup (USA).

Andrew Carlisle (Northern Ireland/Pittsburgh) is the Director of Piping at Carnegie Mellon University, and has won the A Grade Strathspey & Reel at Oban, the A Grade Piobaireachd & Overall at The Cowal Highland Gathering, the United States Piping Foundation Overall 5-times and three All-Ireland titles at Senior level.

Just some of the topics previously covered in Balmoral’s Winter Workshop Classes

  • Band Craft: Being an Effective Band Member
  • Preparing for Solo Performance
  • Bagpipe Ergonomics: Good Tone, Steady Blowing & Comfort
  • Techniques for Memorization & Sightreading
  • Contrasting Simple & Compound Time Signatures
  • Unpacking Piobaireachd Embellishments 
  • Instrument Maintenance
  • Reed Setup
  • Transitioning from Chanter to Pipes
  • Classes in 2/4 March, Jigs, and Strathspey & Reel
  • Piobaireachd 
  • Embellishments & Muscle Memory
  • Irish Airs and Marches

Special deal for pipe band members! Bring at least four members of your pipe band to Balmoral’s Winter Workshop and each band member will receive $50 off their tuition.

Bookings should be made at the Balmoral School of Piping website here.