National trial rule for small group events

Pipe Bands Australia has introduced a new national trial rule for give branches and promoters flexibility in offering competitions for small groups of pipers and drummers.

The trial rule covering duos, trios, quartets and quintets was prepared by Principal Rules and Administration Jamie Forsyth in consultation with national management committee and Principal Piping Brett Tidswell following a request from NSW branch chairman Ainsley Hart.

This trial rule has been developed to assist in the facilitation of additional events that:

  • Encourage the enjoyment and promotion of pipe band music in different formats; and

  • Encourage bands or groups who are not yet able to make up the required complement of the current band and mini-band contests offered by Pipe Bands Australia to participate in some capacity, and receive adjudication from recognised and qualified judges.

It is recognised that contests such as these are often light-hearted opportunities for players to express themselves outside of their current band and that these contests do not require the same level of formality to operate effectively.

Therefore, this trial rule has been developed to remain flexible to the promoter to implement and run these contests as they see fit, whilst providing some guidelines to ensure a consistent competitive environment.

Branches and promoters are asked to provide a report following each use of the trial rule to assist in the development of a permanent rule proposed

Under the trial rule, competing players in the small group events do not need to be members of the same band.

Duo, trio, quartet and quintet contest trial rule

  1. Contest

  2. A promotor may hold any of the following contests, being a duo, trio, quartet and quintet contest.

  3. Complement

  4. The complement of Members who make up a duo, trio, quartet and quintet shall be known as a group.

  5. The complement of a duo shall be 2 pipers, or 2 snare drummers or 1 piper and 1 drummer.

  6. The complement of a trio shall be 3 pipers, or 3 snare drummers or 2 pipers and 1 snare drummer or other complement

  7. The complement of a quartet shall be 4 pipers, or 4 snare drummers or 3 pipers and 1 snare drummer or other complement

  8. The complement of a quintet shall be 3 pipers, 1 bass or tenor drummer and 1 snare drummer or other complement

  9. Players of a group shall be Members of the Association and are not required to be registered with the same band.

  10. Players shall not compete with any other group within the same contest. This rule should not prevent a player competing with another group in a different contest on the same day.

  11. If a player of a group is unable to compete on the day of the contest, the Contest Supervisor may allow the substitution of that player by any other Member.

  12. Dress

  13. Each player of the group shall wear approved band uniform or Highland or other appropriate dress to the satisfaction of the Association. Each player is not required to wear the same dress as other players of the group.

  14. Grading

  15. The determination and application of grading is at the discretion of the promoter. In the absence of any determination by the promoter, grading shall not apply.

  16. Music

  17. The music of any contest shall be one or any of the following:

  18. Any part of parts of an MSR up to the maximum requirement of Grade 4; or

  19. A selection of marches or march up to the maximum requirement of Contest Regulations; or

  20. A medley of own choice of between 3 and 7 minutes.

  21. Judges

  22. The contest shall be adjudicated by 1 piping and 1 drumming judge, with the optional addition of an ensemble adjudicator

  23. If a contest consists of only one discipline, up to three judges of that discipline may adjudicate, at the discretion of the promoter.

  24. Contest operation and administration

  25. If necessary, the promoter shall determine and notify groups of:

  26. The draw;

  27. Attendance of bands;

  28. Contact between judges and players

  29. Judging sheets;

  30. Ties;

  31. Officials;

  32. Movement of bands; and

  33. Aggregate contests.

  34. In the absence of any determination by the promoter, any of the above points shall be consistent with Part C of the Contest Regulations.

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