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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2018 7:49 am 
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Who here has taken the classes at the William Kennedy Piping Academy? I am going this year and would like a little insight as to how the classes are organized, how they are run and what your experience was like as a student please. Not really looking for your take on the Festival (it looks awesome) but really just the classes. Thanks!

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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2018 5:43 pm 
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Good on you John; hope you have a great trip and a great time.

I wanted to go a few years ago, but never could get anyone with the festival to answer my emails so I gave up, and scheduled my trip for different dates. Hopefully they have that sorted out now.

If you're just looking for classes instead of the festival per se, then I'd say just contact the Armagh Pipers Club directly. Sorry I can't be of more help.

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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2018 6:30 pm 
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Thanks Lee. To clarify, I have already spoken with the organizer and he has been lovely to get information from. I am just looking for an actual student perspective. I am already signed up and have bought my plane tickets and such - definitely going.

Events always look different from the inside vs the outside, right? Anyway, really looking forward to it, especially because it will not exactly be tourist season, but hoping some previous students can give me an idea of what to expect.

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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2018 7:46 pm 
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Good deal John. I suppose you know that winters can be very wet and cold in Ulster? Bring warm clothes and a good rain parka.

My (limited) experience with group classes in Ireland is, that the beginner classes are all children, and the intermediate classes are teenagers or younger. WKPF may be different ... but I wouldn't bet on it. Not a big deal to me, though it can be tough keeping up with the cutties and cubs - they learn so much quicker than I can.

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PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2018 11:21 pm 
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I've been for the past three years. It's fantastic. Lots of adults in the classes. Self grading on the first day ("Who calls themselves a beginner?") and then the usual sort of thing where you learn tunes and the technique to go with them. The tutors switch around a bit between groups. What else do you want to know?


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PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2018 4:39 am 
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Yep, the "how do you get grouped" was a question I had. I didn't know if it was self-grouping or "play something and we will sort you out" or what. And it sounds like the teaching style is "the usual". Anyway, thanks for the answer - I am really looking forward to it. See you there!

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PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2018 5:20 am 
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You won’t find a better weekend for piping and instruction, nor better value for money. I’ve probably been five times since the Academy started (and was a regular WKPF attendee before that) and I’ll be there again this year as well. Well worth it. Plus you get entry to all the WKPF concerts as well.

Adults and young adults are generally left to group themselves. Usually only the younger kids who play a tune to be grouped. Also nothing is set in stone. If you choose one class and find the level too advanced or too simple you are more than welcome to switch classes.

Rick

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Last edited by RLines on Mon May 21, 2018 5:27 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2018 5:25 am 
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Thanks! I hope we meet up. I will be the guy from Texas looking very jet lagged!

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PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2018 5:29 am 
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Lee, forgot to respond to your weather and class advice. Yep I am all over the weather thing. Rain gear is ready but I may have to buy a coat for this "cold" you talk about. Kind of foreign to me at this point! And kids in classes - no lie! I taught a banjo and mandolin class at the St Louis Tionol and there were two early teens in the class that just zoomed through everything I threw at them. Quick learners, scary good too.

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