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Go Back   Bob Dunsire Bagpipe Forums > Great Highland Bagpipe > Competing Pipers
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Competing Pipers Questions, issues, or discussions specifically related to Piping and Pipers competition.

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Old 03-22-2012, 07:29 AM   #11
bob864
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Default Re: EUSPBA g4 "mini" MSR

Sorry for any confusion! I meant to say "here in ESUPBA"

What do grade 4 bands compete with in eastern Canada?

Do grade 4 bands in the UK still compete with a MAP set?
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Old 03-22-2012, 10:19 AM   #12
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Default Re: EUSPBA g4 "mini" MSR

Our G4 band competed in Canada several times in the past and had no problems as the requirements were pretty much the same: QMM and Medley. Now Canada's the same as it was, which with the new EUSPBA rule our bands have to know more sets than those they would be competing against in Canada. As a result, our band is considering not even going to Maxville and Montreal this year, which is a shame. It's dumb to have to work on one set for one contest of the year as it takes away focus from the sets required for competition down here and visa/versa.

I agree that players are thrown into competition too early, and the point about limited reperotoire, but the point of competition isn't to build repertoire, it's to win. Yes, it's music, but it's still competition: they don't give out medals to people who know the most music, they give it to those who play the music best. Also, individual learning is a lot different than group/band learning... to get everyone to learn new music at the same rate as required to play the music as a band, as an ensemble, is no simple task, especially at the lower levels.
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Old 03-22-2012, 09:49 PM   #13
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Default Re: EUSPBA g4 "mini" MSR

Quote:
Originally Posted by kaypiob View Post
I agree that players are thrown into competition too early, and the point about limited reperotoire, but the point of competition isn't to build repertoire, it's to win. Yes, it's music, but it's still competition: they don't give out medals to people who know the most music, they give it to those who play the music best..

That is exactly my point. The purpose of learning is to learn. Once you get proficient, compete. We are putting the cart before the horse. I think the purpose of getting rid of the Grade 4 MSR was to try to re arrange that a bit.
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Old 03-23-2012, 08:13 AM   #14
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Default Re: EUSPBA g4 "mini" MSR

Right there with you. Competition is not a learning tool; it's an outlet to present what you have learned.

I don't think the G4 MSR does any favors to our bands here in the EUSPBA. Not to say they can't do it, mind.. as I said before, our G4 band has done quite well with it all things considered. I just think it was an unnecessary switch founded on faulty logic.

As it was stated previously in the thread, all the mini msr really does is widen the gap between grades 5 and 4 a considerable amount. Some may see this as a good thing, 'raising standards' and all that, but I disagree.
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Old 03-23-2012, 02:21 PM   #15
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Default Re: EUSPBA g4 "mini" MSR

I believe that this whole thing speaks of a bigger issue. When as a idiom are we going to understand that we would achieve much more if we worked together as one.
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Old 03-23-2012, 03:31 PM   #16
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Default Re: EUSPBA g4 "mini" MSR

Now that's some hippy talk.

There is no working together when competition is involved, though. And it's rampant in the highland piping scene, unfortunately both on and off the field.
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Old 04-03-2012, 11:41 AM   #17
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Default Re: EUSPBA g4 "mini" MSR

The change is good. There are several reasons to make the change. If a US band goes to compete in Scotland, they have to play the MSR (not that a huge number of bands head over). The big issue with this alone, is that a band has no way to gauge how they will do in competition. This was something we ran into when we went to Scotland last year. We just played the MSR for comments. We never competed against another band with it until we went overseas.
Bands do upgrade in the US. Why do grade four bands have to enter grade three and try to compete with tunes they have never played in a band setting? It's not like we are expecting bands in grade four to play The Caledonian Society of London or Lord Alexander Kennedy. They are expected to play easy entry level tunes and only two parts of strathspey and reel. The good grade four bands will do fine and the bands that are borderline will not. I think it is no different than if it was QMM. The better bands will always do better. I think if a band is not able to handle the change, they may need to downgrade. This also may have been true with the QMM. Those bands that consistently finish at the bottom of the prize list may not be as good as the top grade five bands.
The change should have happened long ago. I don't think I can remember any band looking forward to a QMM day. Everyone looked forward to medley days. They are more enjoyable to play as well as listen to. If a band can play a medley well, there is no reason they can't play an MSR.
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