Dunoon Argyll Pipe Band


Aviles Festival, Asturias - 2011.



On 26th July, at 3oíclock in the morning, members of Dunoon Argyll Pipe Band set off for a full days travel to attend the 15th Interceltic Festival being held in the very pretty town of Aviles in Asturias, Northern Spain.  We arrived over 12 hours and two flights later, and had only a couple of hours to check our instruments before our first performance in a local shopping centre began, followed by a parade through a section of the old town, playing in some lovely squares, and then, after dinner, performing a 1 hour concert on the main stage.  It has to be said that this was more of a feat of survival than a performance to be remembered, for the very tired players anyway, but it was still enjoyed by an appreciative audience who were none the wiser! 


The rest of the week was far less demanding on the playing front, so there was plenty of time to fully explore the delightful sights of this very pretty town, with its old section being full of extremely ornate buildings, narrow streets which opened out into quaint squares with bars and restaurants tucked away everywhere.  The requirements of the Pipe Band consisted of a couple of our own concerts; and then sharing the stage with a Bretagne band and the local Asturian band, who play Gaita pipes.  This is a significantly easier instrument to play than the Highland pipe, which several local people discovered when obliging pipers from Dunoon Argyll let them have a go of their bagpipes!  Needless to say, they didnít ask twice!


Highlights of the trip will be different for each member of the group.  Some enjoyed demonstrating Scottish dancing in the main square, which ended up being televised live for local TV.  Others passed on this opportunity, only to be interviewed at another time, by journalists keen to understand the significance of every item of band uniform.  Then too, others enjoyed the local beach, both during the day and during the small hours, where a long board festival was in full swing at the weekend, resulting in lots of activity there. Not to be missed was the local custom of pouring cider into a glass from a bottle held way above ones head.  It didnít seem to matter that some of it got spilled, but when the cider was tasted, it soon became apparent to some of us why this didnít matter!


The festival culminated in a grand parade on the Sunday evening, with all performers parading from different locations of the town, which was all highly organised and timed, to arrive at the main square and staged area in order, to great applause and appreciation from the gathered throngs.  There was then a customary 1 minute of Ďnoiseí, where everyone, the audience included, made as much noise as they could, but then ceased when the command was given.  Iíve heard of a minute silence before, but never a minuteís noise, so this was a very new experience for us all.  The four celtic nations represented were Scotland, Ireland, Brittany and Asturias, and the crowds whilst thoroughly enjoying the performances given by each band separately, loved the gesture by Dunoon Argyll of appearing on stage displaying the Asturian flag on their instruments.  Then, as well as this, our players had a hasty practice a couple of hours before the parade, and managed to learn some of the Asturian tunes and marched on to join them in their performance, which raised a huge cheer from the audience. 


We had been told before we went to Aviles, that this was a very enjoyable festival, and it certainly turned out to be that and more.  In the past we have often been asked if we have a CD of our music, so this time we did take one with us, and happily sold may at the festival.  We still have some left though, so if anyone would like one, they can purchase one from any current band member; Gibsonís shop or the pipe band hall on Cowal Games Saturday.  We hope people will agree that once again Dunoon Argyll has embraced a worthwhile venture, which enabled us to take our culture and music to a new audience, to the credit of all involved and our own local community.


pics to follow soon folks!









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    The Print & Ink Shop  


    Dunoon Town Centre WebCam   www.dunoon.tv/  
    The Local Newspaper   www.dunoon-observer.co.uk/   
    Dunoon, Argyll, Tourist Information   www.undiscoveredscotland.co.uk/areaduno  
    Dunoon and Cowal   www.cowal-dunoon.com/   

Stewart & Bennett, Solicitors and Estate Agent, Argyll St, Dunoon 

    Steven Gibson Ltd, Argyll Street, Dunoon.   www.thechantershop.co.uk    
    Co-operative Funeralcare, Edward St, Dunoon.   Email: dunoon@letsco-operate.com   
    Lorenzo's of Dunoon   www.lorenzosfishandchips.co.uk   
    Dunoon & Cowal   www.argyllonline.co.uk/index.asp?id=2   
    Friends of Castle Toward    www.friendsofcastletoward.org   
    Enviro Kirn Action Group   www.envirokirn.org    
    Riverrocket ..>>>>>>>>>   www.riverrocket.co.uk     

An interesting wee website dedicated to Dunoon.  

     Welcome to the Park Hotel Dunoon, Argyll   www.parkhoteldunoon.co.uk   






More Great websites 

to do with Scotland.  


    The Royal Scottish Pipe Band Association   www.rspba.org    
    The Royal Scottish Country Dance Society   www.rscds.org   
    The Piping Centre, Glasgow, Scotland.   www.thepipingcentre.co.uk/index.shtml   
    Internet Scotland Map Scotsmart Scottish Directory   www.scotsmart.com/index.html   
    The Scottish Links Directory   www.fife.50megs.com/scottish-links.htm   
    The Highland & Islands Arts Journal   www.hi-arts.co.uk    
    Scotland Tourist Information   www.visitscotland.com     
    Historic Scotland   www.historic-scotland.gov.uk   
    Discover the beauty of the Celtic heritage   www.kelticnations.com  
    A Celtic Traveler -Ian Whitelaw Bagpiper   www.aceltictraveler.com   

A famous Scottish DJ's Official Website


The Edinburgh Military Tattoo



 The home of pipe band bass sections on the Web


Bob Dunsire's Bagpipe Web DirectoryBob Dunsires Bagpipe Web Directory


Stirling Castle


The Home of the Argyll & Sutherland Highlanders


The College Of Piping, Glasgow

      The Clan Lamont Society   www.clan-lamont.co.uk/   


Check out the colourful Whiteholme Publishers website.



Many Thanx to Whiteholme Publishers for the use of their beautiful Dunoon postcard image which can be seen full size in our Dunoon Argyll Page. 

    BBC Scotland   www.bbc.co.uk/scotland   
    National Library of Scotland   www.nls.uk    
    Scottish Rugby Union   www.sru.org.uk   
    Scottish Football Assoc.   www.scottishfa.co.uk   


A wee selection of Pipe Band Websites

& Festival Websites 





The Australian Pipe Bands Community Website   






The Dubai Pipe Band






Kirkwall City Pipe Band, Orkney Islands




Kilrea Pipe Band  Co.Londonderry.  N.Ireland





Royal New Zealand Pipe Bands' Association










Uruguay's most exciting Pipe Band










  The World Pipe Band Championships, Glasgow Scotland.



Glasgow International Piping Festival Scotland



  The Edinburgh Spring Festival Scotland



















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Duggy with Kylie Minogue & Cyndi Lauper

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