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2021 School Instructors

Callum Beaumont | Bruce Gandy | Roddy MacLeod, M.B.E.Iain MacDonald |Ryan MacDonaldDanielle Millar | J. Reid MaxwellRuaridh MacDonald | Elizabeth Shaw


Callum Beaumont - Piping

callum beaumontCallum currently resides in Linlithgow, Scotland and commutes to Clackmannanshire where he tutors students at the prestigious private Dollar Academy.

In a professional capacity he is a much sought after and highly rated instructor prominent around the world, recently having been invited to teach in Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the USA.

He was introduced to bagpipes by Bert Smith at the age of 7 whereupon he took up the chanter and progressed through the junior ranks, winning all of the major junior prizes. These included multiple gold medals at Cowal Highland Gathering, Scottish Junior Championship titles and a debut win of the MacGregor Memorial, 14 years of age.

Progressing to the senior grades, aged just 15 he finished second in the Piobaireachd section of the Duncan Johnstone Competition, his inaugural senior event. Additionally throughout his senior years has been tutored by Tom Speirs and currently Willie MacCalllum.

With regard to band history, at 12 years of age Callum joined the Grade 1 Lothian & Borders Police, moving on to Shotts & Dykehead, Simon Fraser University and Inveraray & District. Winning four World Championship titles, he took a prominent role in each of these bands. In 2017, Callum won the World's again, this time with Inveraray and District Pipe Band.

Callum has now progressed on to winning many of the most prestigious titles in world piping including being the youngest winner of The Clasp, two Gold Medals, The Silver Chanter and much more besides.

To see a full awards list click here.


Bruce Gandy

brucegBruce Gandy grew up in Victoria, British Columbia, where his father was pipe-major of the local Canadian Scottish Regiment pipe band, and he learned to play from notable pipers James W. Troy and Hal Senyk. After several years in the City of Victoria Pipe Band, Bruce moved to Ontario, where he married into the piping Rollo family, and established himself as a top solo and band competitor as a member of the 1987 World Champion 78th Fraser Highlanders.

Bruce also established himself as a composer of note, with many of his tunes being played by the 78th Frasers and other top bands. Bruce moved to Prince Edward Island to became Head Piping Instructor at the College of Piping and Celtic Performing Arts, and later he took the position of Piping Instructor at the Halifax Citadel, where he remains today.

For the last 20 years, Bruce has been one of the dominant players on the World scene, winning the Gold Medals for Piobaireachd at The Northern Meeting (Inverness) and the Argyllshire Gathering (Oban), the Bratach Gorm (Blue Banner) in London, The Silver Star for Former Winners March, Strathspey and Reel and having been 2nd prize winner at the Glenfiddich Championships.

As well, Bruce has published four books of music, produced online teaching and workshops that reach around the world, developed his own pipe chanter with McCallum Bagpipes and he is in regular demand as a tutor and performer. In 2020, Bruce published Peformance: Delivering Your Own Awesome which is a practical guide for being the best you can be in any discipline.

Roddy MacLeod, M.B.E.

RJM 666x1024Roddy MacLeod, MBE, is one of the most distinguished and widely accomplished pipers of his generation, and one of Highland piping’s most profoundly influential identities.

With the mentoring of his long time teacher – the late Duncan Johnstone, he developed into a top class solo piper.
As a soloist, Roddy MacLeod won his first Gold Medal at the Northern Meeting in 1986, then the Argyllshire Gathering Gold Medal in 1988.

He has won the Glenfiddich Piping Championship five times, winning the MSR three times and the piobaireachd event a record ten times, the Silver Chanter seven times, the Northern Meeting Clasp on two occasions, Bi-centenary medal (1988) and Former Winners MSR, the Senior Piobaireachd at the Argyllshire Gathering twice and the Former Winner MSR twice. At the Scottish Piping Society of London Championship he has won the Bratach Gorm eight times, the Gillies Cup Open Piobaireachd nine times, the Former Winners London Medallion MSR five times and the Overall Championship eight times. He continues to be a dynamic and exceptionally successful competitor. He is internationally esteemed as a teacher, adjudicator and recitalist and, for more than 20 years, his warm, strong-sounding 100 year-old Lawrie pipes have given immense pleasure to audiences around the world.
In addition to his solo piping, he developed his interest in pipe bands from a young age and played with the Red Hackle and British Caledonian Airways Pipe Bands, the last of which became the ScottishPower Pipe Band. In 1995, Roddy MacLeod became its Pipe Major and, over the next decade, led it to over 45 Grade 1 Championship prizes including the Cowal Championships and All Ireland Championships.

In 2008, Roddy was involved in the formation of the Spirit of Scotland Pipe Band which brought together a group of elite solo pipers and drummers for one week. The band with Roddy as its Pipe Major played in Grade 1 at the World Pipe Band Championship and qualified for the final. A movie called “On the Day” was made documenting the band’s preparations and performances.

Deeply loyal to piping’s traditions, Roddy MacLeod also has been potently engaged with innovation and development. As Principal of The National Piping Centre from 1996 -2020 he was a prominent driving force behind such highly significant initiatives as the development of the BA (Scottish Music – Piping), degree programme, the establishment of the National Youth Pipe Band of Scotland and the formation of the Piping and Drumming Qualifications Board. He was the founder of CLASP and co-founder of Piping Live!, Glasgow International Piping Festival.

He has so far been responsible for the production and editing of three influential teaching books, the National Piping Centre’s Highland Bagpipe Tutor Book and its Piobaireachd Tutor Book as well as the Transition to Bagpipes book. In addition, during his 24 year tenure he was editor of two magazines – “Piping Today” and following the integration of the College of Piping – the “Piping Times”. He also founded the online news service Bagpipe.news.

In 2003, he was made a Member of the British Empire in recognition of his services to piping and, in 2004, was awarded the Glenfiddich Spirit of Scotland Award for Music.

In 2012 Roddy was inducted into the Scottish Traditional Music Awards Hall of Fame
In 2019 he was honoured by the City of Glasgow and awarded the Lord Provost’s award for services to music.

J. Reid Maxwell - Snare Drumming

reidmaxwellReid has an amazing record of accomplishments at the top in the pipe band world. Apart from his six World and four World Drum Corps titles with SFU, Reid has won the titles with two other Grade 1 bands, one of them as lead drummer! Reid is perhaps the only person is history to lead two separate drum corps to the World title!

Apart from his years of pipe band and solo success, Reid has also been an amazing teacher of drumming, inspiring students across the world at workshops, schools and via the internet. You can hear his influence on drum corps around the World, and his incredible feel for pipe band ensemble has been a key part of his teaching.

Reid has been at Sound Advice several times in the past, and we are very excited to have him return this year!


Iain MacDonald - School Director/Piping

iain worldsIain began piping in 1965.  He played in local bands in Regina, and attended the Fort San summer school, where he was able to take lessons from P-M Donald MacLeod, M.B.E. In 1978 and '81, Iain lived in Scotland, where he took weekly lessons from Donald MacLeod. Later, Iain was a student of James McMillan of Burnaby, British Columbia for a number of years.

Iain’s band experience includes seasons with the Babcock-Renfrew Pipe Band under P-M Iain McLeod, six years with the with the Simon Fraser University Pipe Band, one season with ScottishPower, and he is currently a member of the 78th Highlanders (Halifax Citadel).

Iain founded the Grade 2 City of Regina Pipe Band in 1992. He also founded the Grade 4 Conservatory of Performing Arts Pipe Band. Iain currently teaches piping at the Conservatory of Performing Arts, University of Regina, and does freelance communications work. He holds the Graduate Certificate and the Senior Teacher’s Certificate, and is on the Board of Examiners for the Piping and Drumming Qualifications Board.

Iain started on bellows pipes in 1983 when he was given a practice set of uilleann pipes, and since then he has played uilleann pipes, Scottish smallpipes and reelpipes. He has been a North American distributor of Fred Morrison Reelpipes since 2005 and his business Reelpipes.com supplies pipers and pipe bands across North America, and as far away as Australia. Over the years, Iain has recorded CDs with pipe bands, folk groups, and for Highland dancing, and has contributed many articles to piping magazines. In August 2008, he published a collection of pipe music entitled “Along the Road.” In 2021, Iain's novel about the life of Angus MacKay of Raasay [Piper to Queen Victoria] will be available from Blackwater Press.


Ryan MacDonald - Scottish Smallpipes

ryanmacdA native of the North Shore, Cape Breton, Ryan MacDonald plays Highland and smallpipes. She was a long-time student and instructor at the Gaelic College and played with the Gaelic College Pipe Band when they won the World Pipe Band Championships.

She spent a lot of time with Hamish Moore, and he has been a major influence on her smallpipes and learning style. Ryan is a gifted musician and storyteller, and her roots are always showing in the music.

Ryan is a professional-level Highland piper with firm grounding in Highland technique and tradition, and also an expeienced in Grade 1 pipe band player. 

A sought-after photographer, she currently lives in Victoria, British Columbia.

Danielle Millar

dani millarDani began her piping career in Saskatchewan, playing with the 96th Highlanders, Strathfleet, and City of Regina pipe bands. After completing high school, she attended university in Vancouver, and joined the Simon Fraser University Pipe Band, winning the World Pipe Band Chammpionships in her first season! Since 1995, Dani is one of a few members of SFU to have played in all six World's wins.

Over her years in SFU, Dani has been a successful soloist, an outstanding instructor to junior bands and at summer camps, has played an impoortant role in band music and especially harmonies, and has been a key perfomer for the band in competition and concert halls, from Carnegie Hall to Lincoln Theatre, from the Sydney Opera House to the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall.

Through all of this, she has managed to build a successful career as a school teacher, and she devotes a lot of time to raising her daughters.


Ruaridh MacDonald - Tenor/Bass

ruaridh2019Ruaridh MacDonald started tenor drumming at age five, but he’s been hanging out with pipe bands from the day he was born.  He started tenor drumming with the Conservatory Pipe Band. Then, at age 12, Ruaridh started competing with the Grade 2 City of Regina Pipe Band, including contests in Scotland in 2005, 2006, and 2010. He also spent 2 seasons as the band’s bass drummer in 2011 & 2015.

Ruaridh was a member of the Inveraray and District Pipe Band for four seasons (2012-2014 & 2019), and won the 2019 World Pipe Band Championships, the 2019 European and Scottish Championships, as well as the overall Champion of Champions pipe band and drum corps. Previously he was part of the wins in the 2014 European Pipe Band Championships and 2nd overall in the 2014 World Pipe Band Championships. He also recorded Ascension: Live at the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall with the band in 2013.

 In 2017/18, he led the midsection of the 78th Highlanders Halifax Citadel Pipe Band (Grade 1).

Ruaridh has a Bachelor of Music Theatre Performance degree from Sheridan College, Ontario. He works as a professional actor and is based in Toronto.

Elizabeth Shaw – Snare Drumming

EShaw.500Elizabeth Shaw started snare drumming in 2001 when she joined the Ogden Legion Pipe Band, a local youth band in Calgary. Since then, she has gained experience from numerous world-class instructors through solo lessons and workshops across the continent. Elizabeth has played in several different bands throughout her career, including the Grade One 78th Fraser Highlanders of Ontario for the 2014 season. She was a member of the Rocky Mountain Pipe Band when they won the 2017 North American Pipe Band Championship title in Grade Two.

Some of her solo awards include winning the 2011 Grade One North American Solo Championship, and 2nd Place in Professional at the 2011 Agnew-Harrison Invitational Solo Competition. She also places consistently in the Professional Solo Grade across several provinces and has been the Alberta Provincial Champion for multiple years.

Elizabeth has been instructing several bands and solo competitors since 2007. You can find her at ShawSnare.ca, and on several social media channels including Instagram [https://www.instagram.com/shaw.snare/] and Facebook [https://www.facebook.com/shawsnareinstruction]. This is Elizabeth’s first time attending Sound Advice!

Outside of the pipe band community you can find Elizabeth indulging in her other hobbies, including rock climbing, boxing, and visiting the local cat café.


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