The NWT Pipe Band poses for a photo following a Canada Day "pop-up performance" just outside Yellowknife City Hall. Photo by Anson Chappell
NWT Pipe Band is a non-profit society established under the NWT Societies Act. Originally formed in 1969 as the Yellowknife Pipe Band Association, in 1978 it changed its name to the Northwest Territorial Pipe Band, to reflect its wider geographic scope.
The Band is a Grade 4 (recreational) highland pipes and drums band. Although we strive to be the best pipe band that we can be -- our emphasis is on having fun! The NWTPB performs at many events during the year including the Canada Day parade, St. Patrick's High School Graduation Mass, Relay for Life and many others. It also engages in a fundraising event each year - the annual Burns Night dinner and dance in January. Our most recent Robert Burns Dinner & Dance was held on Saturday, January 25, 2020. Fundraising is necessary in order to purchase and maintain instruments (drums in particular) and to provide for kilts. Members may perform at other events on request.
Each fall, the band executive – including the Pipe Major and Drum Major – is elected at the band’s annual general meeting.
There have been many high points over the course of the past 40 years, such as performing for
- Her Late Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II during her visit to Yellowknife in 1994;
- Her Majesty, Queen Margrethe II, the Queen of Denmark, when Greenland celebrated home rule in 1978;
- At the time, His Royal Highness, Charles, the Prince of Wales (now King), during his visit in May 2022 to Yellowknife (with the then Duchess of Cornwall (now Queen Consort))and at the opening of the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre in Yellowknife in 1978; and
- Their Royal Highnesses, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, during their visit to Yellowknife in 2012.
The Northwest Territorial Pipe Band plays frequently at community events. Although a recreational pipe band, it has played in competitions, most recently in Red Deer and Ellersley, AB in June 2003. Some of its members play in competitions on their own, most recently in Kamloops, British Columbia in 2015.
The Northwest Territorial Pipe Band offers lessons for beginners in piping and in drumming, starting in September or October each year. and running until the end of June. We also welcome people who are already pipers and drummers -- even if you are a bit out of practice!
The following is a link to a YouTube documentary on the NWT Pipe Band: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zTKU-qAvSHM .
The following is a link to another YouTube documentary: They Pipe Among Us.