THE PIPER BEHIND THE PIPING
Commitment to and a Love for Heritage
Born in Scotland, Claire moved to the United States at an early age with her family. Throughout her childhood ties to Scotland remained with frequent annual trips to visit family as well as maintaining a host of cultural traditions in the home. Claire started on the practice chanter at age 10 encouraged by her father, a drummer and manager of the then, Hamilton Pipe Band, now known as St. Thomas Alumni Pipe Band (STA) one of only two Grade 1 (top level) pipe bands in the USA.
Claire progressed in piping as a solo competitor throughout her youth, being promoted to a Grade 2 solo competitor in her early 20s where she also joined Silver Thistle Pipes and Drums - a grade 3 pipe band and a 501 (c)3 cultural non-profit organization promoting Scottish Cultural Arts in Central Texas, while studying at The University of Texas at Austin. During that time she competed all across the USA in both solo piping and band competitions, and served as the public relations chair with the band. In 2008 she resigned from the band to pursue a master's in social work at The University of Texas at Austin. Post graduation, she moved to Houston with her husband and two young children.
After a hiatus of 10 years, Claire returned to the piping scene in 2019 with more flexibility in family life allowing for increased time to dedicate to practices, competitions and performances. In August of 2019, she traveled with Silver Thistle as a guest player to compete in the The World Pipe Band Championships in Glasgow, Scotland. She continues her piping into the 2020 competitive season and continuing to learn and grow in both light and piobaireachd (classical) piping music.
Claire has performed for church services, weddings, funerals and various other events throughout her piping career and is flexible in accommodating the needs of her clients who require The Great Highland Bagpipe as part of their special event experience.