High aspirations for Mosgiel bagpipe player

Highland lad . . . Mosgiel 16-year-old Logan Dale channels Scottish ancestry with his bagpipes. PHOTO: GERARD O'BRIEN

After only three years of playing it is already clear a young Mosgiel piper has talent by the bagful.

Logan Dale (16) was recently given an educational grant of $500 from the Caledonian Society of Otago for his talents.

This adds to a pile of achievements the Taieri College pupil has amassed with the instrument.

Logan began piping three years ago, no doubt catching the interest from others in his family.

His mother is a former player and his grandfather and two uncles all play.

Since he started, Logan has achieved top three placings in most solo competitions in Invercargill, Dunedin and Christchurch.

He is now C grade for solo piping and hopes to gain enough placings to be upgraded to B grade this year.

He plays with the City of Invercargill Highland Pipe Band and has also been in the New Zealand Youth Pipe Band for a year and a half.

He is taught by City of Invercargill pipe major Alasdair Mackenzie, who promoted him to their grade two band which won at the New Zealand Pipe Band Championships held in Dunedin in March this year.

Logan loves everything about the instrument, but cannot explain quite why.

“I love the sound of them, the group, playing, talking to the other people in the band. Yeah, putting on the kilt and stuff is good fun too.”

He has a mini-business playing at weddings which he has done about five times.

Logan has also offered his services at between 20 and 30 haggis ceremonies for visitors during the cruise ship season.

“It’s a Scottish welcome to Dunedin I suppose.”

He tries to keep practise to the lounge, away from people.

He has only had neighbourly noise complaints once.

“It was a house down the road in the afternoon. I think I was playing outside. It must be pretty loud.”

Starting on the instrument was very difficult, he said.

“Luckily you start on a practice chanter which is a lot quieter.”

In the future Logan wants to reach the highest grade of solo playing, and has his eyes on world competitions.