A former Red Hot Chilli Piper is hoping to inspire a new generation of bagpipers by offering free lessons to youngsters during lockdown.
Craig Muirhead, who is director of piping and drumming at Strathallan School, Perthshire, has encouraged young people from across Tayside and Fife to join the free chanter lessons.
The project, led by Craig in collaboration with McCallum Bagpipes and FLUX Solutions, will be available to all beginners of any age and background and will take place live on YouTube next week.
Children who want to take part do not need to have a chanter to hand as Craig hopes to make the lessons accessible to all.
He said the classes, which start on January 12 and 14, could be a good way for children to learn music while learning from home.
“There is not a lot on offer for people who are interested in learning to play bagpipes.
“I hope these lessons will give people the chance to try something new and put a bit of focus to their week while in lockdown.
“It’s absolutely fine if people don’t have the equipment at home. The initial few lessons will be about getting fingers in the right place and that can even be done on a pen or a pencil.”
As one of Scotland’s most experienced performing bagpipers, Craig is regularly invited to entertain Prince Charles and has been dedicating most of his time to inspire young pipers and drummers in Perthshire.
Strathallan School is currently teaching children remotely however the piping department purchased electronic chanters last term to allow pupils to keep playing despite Covid-19 restrictions.
After his own career with Celtic rock band Red Hot Chilli Pipers, Craig is hoping to inspire children to become world-class pipers.
“If just one of those children turn out to be a half decent player then I will be delighted,” he said. “I hope it will inspire people to keep on learning.”
The sessions already had more than 200 sign-ups and those interested in learning the chanter can register at https://www.pipingclub.com/.
The lessons are accessible for pupils who do not have a chanter, however the Piping Club is also offering affordable instruments for those who want to continue their learning.