Well, another year is upon us and The Delta Police Pipe Band is looking back on a very successful 2009, a year that was one of the busiest in the Band's history. The band had two very successful Burns nights in January, a great spring concert with Mark Donnelley, the Whiskey Dicks and the Eire Borne Dancers and our usual slate of community parades and shows around the lower mainland in the first half of the year. In July, the band went of to Switzerland for two weeks to play at the Basel Tattoo and also went to Ilzach, France for a performance. As usual, lots of good friends were made and we hope to cross paths again in the near future with our new Swiss friends as well as the other bands from the UK, Australia and New Zealand that we met along the way.
Once we got back to Canada in August the band played many events around the Lower Mainland and also took our annual trip to Victoria to play at Government House for the Police Honors Night.
On the social side, the band had very succesful alumni Scotch Tasting on October. A slide show of old alumni photographs that was shown at the event can be seen by clicking here. It was fantastic to see so many of the retired members out swapping stories from the early days of the band!
We now turn our attention to 2010 and in particular the two Robert Burns Dinners coming up on January 22 and 23rd. Both nights are now sold out and we thank everyone for their support. We look forward to seeing you in our travels in 2010!
The Basel Military Tattoo 2009 opened with a bang on Saturday night. The band played in the tattoo parade on Saturday morning, marching through the streets of old Basel to a huge crowd of over 120,000. The band then played one final dress rehearsal before opening the tattoo with a 9pm show. The cast received a standing ovation and it was a great experience for all the band members. We now play 10 more shows over the next week and are looking forward to it! Every show is sold out and the total audience will be wll over 100,000. The show has pipes and drums, military bands, bands on horseback, and the Top Secret Drum Corps from Basel. The whole production is very well organized (it runs like a Swiss watch!) and the band is very impressed with the whole experience.
Below is a video of the band marching in the parade.
Two pictures are below. The first one is of the band marching over the Rhine river in formation with the Temuka Pipe Band from New Zealand and the Royal Highland Fusiliers from Scotland. The DPPB is in the middle two ranks. The second is the tattoo perfomance with the band in a Swiss cross formation. The DPPB is in the front and right of the outside of the formation. More details to follow over the next few days!
14th July, Bastille Day, is celebrated throughout France in much the manner of Canada Day combined with Ladner May Days. A national holiday, it brings the French together to watch parades, musical entertainment and generally indulge in national fervour.
The town of Illzach, in the Alsace region of France, is no exception, though this year, for the first time, they were entertained in a very different way. The Delta Police Pipe Band arrived in Basel, just 40 km away, on the 13th, and slept our jetlag away. Then, together with the British Royal Artillery Brass Band, the New Zealand Temuka Pipe Band, and the South Australia Pipe Band, they were spirited up the freeway to Illzach and the town’s stadium. The combined and individual performances from the bands were enthusiastically received by a crowd of over ten thousand, packed shoulder to shoulder under increasingly threatening skies. Our Highland Dancers were as popular a feature there as they are in Delta and the rousing rendition of our audience favourites, Scotland the Brave and Black Bear was met with thunderous applause. As the combined Bands marched off the stage, the heavens opened and a downpour soaked everyone. This did nothing to dampen the appreciation of the citizens of Illzach.
The Band now faces two days of intense rehearsal as part of the 200 pipers and drummers who form the massed pipe bands in the Tattoo. With many other military brass bands and feature acts, the event is intricate and organized down to the last second with true Swiss precision.
A full Dress rehearsal on Friday, 17th, to an invited audience, will set the stage for the eleven concerts the Band will participate in over the eight days of the Tattoo. At each concert, they will be performing to a sellout crowd, the Basel Tattoo being the largest European Military Tattoo after the famed Edinburgh Tattoo in Scotland.
On the afternoon of Saturday 18th. the Band will march in a parade through the streets of Basel and perform at the International Pipefest, a separate gathering celebrating the bagpipes as an art form and involving pipers and bands from Europe, US, Australia, Scotland, Poland, celebrating every form of bagpipe that exists.
The Band thanks all our supporters for their ongoing support of the band and we are all very proud to represent D\elta, British Columbia and Canada when we go abroad. Some pictures from the show in Ilazach are below - further updates to come as the Tattoo opens!!
The Delta Police Pipe Band held our annual Concert on May 9, 2009 - once again at the South Delta Baptist Church. The show featured the Pipe Band along with Tenor Mark Donnelly, The Whiskey Dicks, and the Eire Born Irish Dancers. Mark is well known for his performances with the Vancouver Opera and for his rousing version of 'O Canada' before the Vancouver Canucks games. It was a bit of a fire drill getting Mark to the concert on time as the Canucks had game 5 of their playoff series at 7:30pm......the same time as the start of our concert! Mark managed to perform live on Hockey Night in Canada at GM Place and then raced out to Tsawwassen to perform at our show. Mark and his son Sean put on a great show. The Whiskey Dicks are a group of amazingly talented guys and their style was a bit of a departure from some of our previous shows, but it was really well received. They are a high energy group who play in a variety of styles and pulled out a Celtic flavour for their numbers on May 9th. Pat Ernst, who plays fiddle for the Whiskey Dicks, has played at our Burns Night before and it was great to see Pat, Ryan, Mike, and Curt do their thing for our crowd. The Eire Born Dancers performed along with Juno Award Winning Fiddler Shona LaMottee and as usual brough the house down. It was a great night. Pictures and sound files are available here . A review of the concert was published in the Delta Optimist, and can be viewed here . Many thanks to all who attended!
The band is now well into preperations for the Basel Military Tattoo in Basel, Switzerland this summer. The band leaves on July 12th and starts preparations for the tattoo that week with the actual shows beginning July 18th. The band is also going to a small town in France on July 14th to play for Bastille Day celebrations, the French National Holiday. There is lots of new music to learn and practices will be intense for the next 7 weeks. Everyone in the band is looking forward to the trip and will be working hard to put on the great show the Band has become known for.
Before we go we hope to see some of you at the Ladner May Days, North Delta Parade, Canada Day in Steveston and at Kirkland House, and at other events around the area!
The Band hosted two very succesful Burns Suppers on the 23rd and 24th of January, 2009. The total attendance for the two nights was approximately 900 people. The band thanks all those who attended! In addition to the Delta Police Pipe Band the performers included fiddler Pat Ernst, Piper Alan Walters, and the Tartan Pride Dancers. Both nights were MC'd by retired band member Doug Grant. The address to the haggis was performed by Greg Hall on the 23rd and Everett McKenzie on the 24th. Greg's address can be viewed on our YouTube page.
A recording made on the 24th of the band's traditional closing/march out tunes (Scotland the Brave & The Black Bear) can be downloaded below. You can also listen to the tune online by pausing the site wide audio player at the bottom of this page and by clicking the button to the left of the tune title right below this post to listen.
The Delta Police Pipe Band is off to Switzerland this summer to perform at the 2009 Basel Tattoo.
(Click on the picture above to view the flyer for the Tattoo)
The Tattoo runs from the 18th to the 25th of July, 2009 with a total of 10 shows in 8 days. The DPPB will be part of the Massed Pipes and Drums and will perform with the Swiss Highlanders from Switzerland, the German Pipes and Drums, the Royal British Legion Band from Holland, Queen Victoria School Pipe Band and 1st Battalion Scots Guards from Scotland and The Pipe Band of the Royal Tank Regiment from England. From Canada will come the 48th Highlanders of Canada Pipes and Drums and the Delta Police Pipe Band. The South Australia Pipes and Drums from Australia and the Temuka Pipe Band from New Zealand round out the roster. Click on any of the highlighted Band names to view their website. Information about the tattoo can be found on their website, click here . In addition to the Tattoo, the band will also perform at the Basel Pipefest ,a large gathering of Pipers and Drummers from all over the world.
Other bands performing include the Band of the Royal Coldstream Guards from the UK and the very exciting Top Secret Drum Corps from Switzerland. An example of the Massed Pipes and Drums finale performance from the 2008 Basel Tattoo is below (to enjoy these videos, click the stop button on the site wide audio player at the bottom of this page so that you don't experience the tracks playing over the top of each other):
An example of the talent of the Top Secret Drum Corp can be seen below:
The Band is looking forward to playing at the Tattoo and we hope to do some type of daily blog from the Tattoo and post daily pictures and updates online so that those back at home can follow along with the band..
The next month is a busy time for the Delta Police Pipe Band. In November, we'll be appearing in the following locations:
November 3 - a few pipers are playing with our presentation of Anthony Kearns at the South Delta Baptist Church
November 11 - Remembrance Day is a full one for us. The Band will be playing at the Cenotaph in Ladner as part of the Annual Remembrance Day Ceremony. The Band will then play at the Ladner Legion, the Tsawwassen Legion, The ANAF in Steveston, and once again at the Ladner Legion before the day is out. We hope to see lots of familiar faces and we look forward to speaking with many of you.
November 17- The Band plays at the Delta Police Department Regimental Dinner
November 20 - The Band plays at the Police Honours Night at Government House in Victoria
We'll be playing at a few events around Ladner in December and then gearing up for our two Burns Suppers on January 23rd and 24th, 2009. These are two of our biggest events of the year and we hope to see all of the Band's Supporters at the Sacred Heat School in Ladner for a great evening of Burns Poems, Piping, Dancing, Singing and great food and drink. For details and tickets, please click here
Welcome to the updated Delta Police Pipe Band website. We have added some new features that we hope our visitors will enjoy. Some of the new features are:
1. An expanded photo and video section with pictures from our last three tours as well as historical photos and videos of the band from YouTube
2. A Band Museum that lists all the former and current band members, shows some historical documentation and hosts some slideshows that feature past programs, articles and photos. There is also a band store with the new band ball hat in Smith Tartan available for purchase online
3. A members section that has bios on all the current members
4. An events calendar with clickable links that provide more detailed information about each event as well as a google map link to the event location
5. A contact page that allows visitors to contact the band in a host of different ways
We will be continuing to add content over the coming weeks and months in order to keep our supporters up to date on what the band is up to.
The alumni listing in the Band Museum is a "first crack" at a comprehensive list. Its highly likely that former and current members are going to look at the list and see some errors. Please let the webmaster know and we will make the updates. The goal of the band museum is to have a place to share the history of the band so we will expand it to include more photos, stories and artifacts from the band's past. If any alumni members have anything they want to add in as far as content, please let me know.
We hope you enjoy the new website and please feel free to offer any comments below.
All the best!
Delta Police Pipe Band