Making bagpipes great again
[Originally published on December 10, 2017]
In skilled hands, they can produce a powerful, stirring and beautiful Celtic sound. But the bagpipes' reputation as ear-splitters and strangled cat impersonators has taken its toll.
Traditional pipe bands are in serious decline. Many have folded as their players age out and die — and new blood is very hard to come by.
The Niagara Regional Police Pipe Band is bucking the trend.
Every weekend morning, half a dozen of the old guys — some of Canada's top pipers — meet up at the local Legion Hall to help young enthusiasts master their beloved instrument.
They're part of a program called The Big Noise, designed specifically to attract young lungs and flexible cheeks to the pipes.
Maureen Brosnahan's documentary is called A Big Noise.
Click 'listen' above to hear the full documentary.