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In a Grade 4 Band? Let us know what you think?

In keeping with trends around the world, and particularly in North America, the Pipers’ and Pipe Band Society of Ontario’s (PPBSO) Music Committee is considering eliminating the Grade 4 Band March Medley in favour of a Mini-MSR (starting in the 2025 competition season.)

“The impetus for the move is to align ourselves with other associations across North America,” said Jim McGillivray, chair of the PPBSO Music Committee. “This allows grade 4 bands to compete throughout North America with the same requirements of either a Medley or a Mini-MSR.”

“It’s also a reflection of how far the grade has progressed in recent years with bands of today being generally more capable of presenting a simple MSR than bands of yesteryear.”

The topic has been discussed on several occasions within the PPBSO Music Committee over the past decade, though the March Medley was retained each time. We are now considering ending the March Medley contest after the 2024 season.

Note: A Mini-march/Strathspey and Reel (“Mini-MSR”) consists of four parts of march music, four parts of strathspey and four parts of reel. Two-parted tunes are acceptable and would be encouraged. Each tune can be played only once. More information will follow.

Are you in a Grade 4 or 5 band? We encourage your feedback on this matter. Let us know what you think about this potential transition by emailing Please identify "Grade 4- Mini-MSR Discussion" in the subject line. Thanking you in advance.


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