Some pipe-bands didn't show up...
Procession lacked lustre


Even though the proccession was slightly less well-attended than in previous years, Sunday's procession was much longer than it needed to be, and was punctuated by gaps where some of the absent pipe bands should have been... It was a bit on the sloppy side, in fact.

We should beware of letting ingenuity and economic considerations (1999 featured clever and income-generating events) spoil something as central to the festival as this famous procession, which over the last ten years has acquired a tremendous reputation. Moreover, now that Lorient has taken the lead in this domain, we should watch out that other like-minded events don't steal the march over our festival.

It does seem that organisers of this kind of spectacle are all experiencing difficulty in staging these massive gatherings. Firstly because of the difficulty of getting the participants there, and paying them, and especially so for musical ensembles, where piping contests are time-consuming at the best of times. The Festival de Cornouaille is just two weeks away from the bagad championship "finals", and this may explain why half-a-dozen of the top groups where not there yesterday.

For the rest, the procession had loads of interest, and six of the top pipe bands were unmistakably present and in full clamour. The procession moved off as one, but waiting times gradually increased as time went on, and the procession 's tail revealed ungainly time lapses of up to five minutes, for example between the circle in front of the Briec bagad, and again for the Scottish pipe band and Kemper bagad. One might venture the opinion that there's some tightening up to be done on the procession front..

Ronan Gorgiard.

Copyright Technopole Quimper Cornouaille France-Ouest 1999