Bagpipes Advice and Expertise
Photo taken at Hastings, New Zealand after being presented with the 2009 Comumn na Piobaireachd New Zealand Gold Medal
Ian Lyons is a reputable name in piping and pipe band circles, not only in Australia, but all over the World.
Ian has been involved in pipe bands and solo piping for 34 years. He has played with some of the World's top pipe bands such as The Pipes & Drums of the Royal Ulster Constabulary from Northern Ireland, The most famous band from Melbourne, Australia, The 78th Fraser Highlanders Pipe Band from Toronto, Canada and he currently plays with the Field Marshal Montgomery Pipe Band from Northern Ireland. Ian has played in 23 Grade 1 World Pipe Band Championships with 3 wins and 18 top six finishes. He is also Pipe Major of the Moorabbin City Pipe Band who have also been very successful, winning 5 Australian Championships & 2 New Zealeand Championship in Grade 2.
Ian was taught to play the bagpipes from the age of 7 by his father P/M William Lyons B.E.M., formerly Pipe Major of the 1st Battalion Irish Guards, and grew up in Northern Ireland playing with his local pipe band in Banbridge. After spending several years with the Banbridge Pipe Band, Ian, at 17 years of age, moved on to play with The Pipes & Drums of the Royal Ulster Constabulary and played in his first Grade 1 season and World Championship in 1989.
In late 1989, Ian imigrated to Australia. He traveled to Scotland each year from 1991 with a famous Australian pipe band playing in its first Grade 1 World Championship right up to that bands' famous World Championship win in 1998.
In 2000, Ian decided to continue on in the competition arena when he was asked to guest play with The 78th Fraser Highlanders Pipe Band from Toronto, Canada. Before long, Ian became involved with the tuning team of the band. Ian played with the 78th's for 9 years, until 2008, at contests in Canada, the North American Championships at Maxville and the World Championships in Scotland.
From 2009 Ian has been a guest player with the 8 times World Champions, Field Marshal Montgomery Pipe Band, from his native Northern Ireland. With FMM, Ian has won the County Down Championships, Ulster Championships four times, the British Championships, the European Championships twice.
Ian played with FMM in their World Pipe Band Championship wins in 2011 & 2012.
In the local scene in Victoria, Australia, Ian has been involved quite extensively in workshops, recitals and teaching. In 1994 he took on a tutors position with a Grade 3 & Juvenile Pipe Band called Moorabbin City Pipe Band. At the time the band was a very enthusiastic group of young kids from in and around the eastern suburbs of Melbourne. Ian quickly established a solid basis for teaching and bringing on this group of young players and within a few years they won the Grade 3 Australian Championship. Ian took on the Pipe Majors role at the Moorabbin City Pipe Band in 1999 and since then, Moorabbin City (also Clayton RSL Pipe Band), has won 5 Grade 2 Australian Championships and 2 Grade 2 New Zealand Championship. One of the unique attributes of this band was that almost every young player in the juvenile band when Ian arrived in 1994 was part of the 2004 Grade 2 Australian Championship win. Moorabbin City Pipe Band continues to do well in Grade 2 competition in Australia.
Apart from a distinguished career in pipe banding, Ian has also won and placed in many solo piping contests in Northern Ireland, Australia, Canada and New Zealand. He started off with his first win in the Armagh Pipers Society Juvenile Piobaireachd Competition at aged 16. He has won the Open Aggregate Solo Piping Trophy in Victoria and is also the 2003, 2004 & 2005 Victorian Pipers Association Piper of the Year and Quaich Winner. Ian placed 3rd place in the 2005 Gold Medal MSR in Maxville, Canada amongst a very strong field and has also won the VPA Piobaireachd Gold Medal.
In 2007, Ian was the runner-up in the Comunn na Piobaireachd Gold Medal of New Zealand and also coming 2nd in the Strathspey & Reel. He also gained a 3rd place in the Gold Medal of Canada at Maxville in August. Then a 4th Place in the A Grade Piobaireachd, 4th Place in the Silver Chanter and 1st Place in the Hornpipe & Jig at the Silver Chanter Contest in Christchurch, New Zealand.
In 2008 Ian placed 4th in the Gold Medal of Canada at Maxville and won the VPA Piobaireachd Gold Medal. He won the prestigious 2008 Silver Chanter Contest in Christchurch, New Zealand also placing 3rd in the Former Winners of the Silver Chanter on the same weekend. He placed highly in all the other 'A Grade' events taking 2nd in the March, 2nd in the Strathspey & Reel, 3rd in the 6/8 March, 4th in the Hornpipe & Jig and 4th in the Open Piobaireachd.
2009, Ian won the coveted Comumn na Piobaireachd Gold Medal of New Zealand and also placed 2nd in the March, Strathspey & Reel, 3rd in the 6/8 March, 3rd in the 2 x 2/4 Marches and 4th in the Strathspey & Reel. He then finished off his solo season at the R.U. Brown Competition in Adelaide where he won the Open MSR and came 2nd in the Open Hornpipe & Jig.
In 2010, Ian competed at the R.U. Brown Competition in Adelaide where he won the Open March, Strathspey & Reel, came 2nd in the Hornpipe & Jig and 3rd in the Piobaireachd Gold Medal.
Whilst in Scotland in 2010, Ian competed in the Silver Medal Qualifier in Glasgow, the Silver Medal & Light Music at Oban and also solo competions at the Nortern Meeting in Inverness, the Braemar Highland Gathering and Blairgowrie Highland Games.
Ian has performed in numerous solo recitals and played in many high profile pipe band concerts all over the World including the famous Australian band, 78th's & FMM concerts.
Ian's teaching extends throughout Victoria and in New Zealand including the tuition and guidance of individual players, bands, workshops and schools.
Ian plays a set of 1996 Full Silver Acanthus Engraved Naill Bagpipes with a ‘Lyons’ McCallum Blackwood Pipe Chanter and Wilson Reed. He uses a Moose Valve, a Moose Bag with prototype Moose Moisture Control System and Hylands In-Line Drone Valves. Ian plays Crozier Drone Reeds. Crozier Glass Fibre Tenors and a Crozier Cane Bass.
With their many years of experience in piping and dancing, Rebecca and Ian have established Lyons Bagpipes & Highland Supplies and turned it into a reputable World-wide enterprise.
In 2002, they decided it was time for Lyons Bagpipes & Highland Supplies to move into product design and development. Since then Lyons Bagpipes & Highland Supplies has steadily released exclusive products and will continue to do this for years to come.
Although Ian's wife Rebecca now successfully runs Lyons Bagpipes & Highland Supplies full time, Ian still plays a voluntary role in advising customers on the best and most suited products for their particular needs. He is always happy to take a hands on approach to helping out any customer who require assistance. Ian's keen interest in development means that Lyons Bagpipes & Highland Supplies will be able to continually provide new and innovative products to the piping World now and in the future.
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