Learn to play with the Robert Malcolm Memorial Youth Pipe Bands

The Robert Malcolm Memorial (RMM) Pipe Bands program is the SFU Pipe Band's junior and development pipe bands system. The bands are comprised of motivated youth, teens and adults starting at age 7 and receives weekly instrument instruction from members of the World Champion Simon Fraser University Pipe Band. Under the SFU Pipe Band organizational umbrella, students & players in the two Beginner levels and the three Pipe Band levels are exposed to the highest levels of world class instruction in both bagpipes and drums (snare, tenor, and bass drums) throughout the entire program.

Benefits of learning piping and drumming:  

  • enhance creativity by learning music
  • learn with other children and youth of similar age
  • learn to work in teams and toward goals
  • instruction from world calibre instructors
  • travel regionally, nationally, and internationally to perform
  • learn about Scottish culture
  • perform music with others of all ages
  • make life-long friends

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Instructional classes dates, times and locations   All RMM classes are held Tuesday evenings (7:00 to 8:15 pm for the Beginner levels, 7:00 to 8:30 pm for all the bands) in the Academic Quadrangle building of the SFU Burnaby Mountain Campus, directed by SFU Pipe Band leaders SFU Pipe Sergeant Jack Lee, SFU Lead Drummer J. Reid Maxwell and numerous other world class SFU Pipe Band players and other guest instructors.   Classes are based on enrollment each year however are maintained at the lowest possible student to teacher ratio possible in our Beginner levels classes. Placement in our bands is at the discretion of the band instructors based on player’s calibre.

Enrollment and registration  Enrollment periods are in September and January of each year. For beginners new to piping & drumming (ages 7 to 13 years) the first night for the Fall classes is Tuesday, September 26, 2023 and for the Winter & Spring classes is Tuesday January 9, 2024. If you are a new beginner or new player, please ensure that you have contacted Registrar Anne Boyle at registrar@sfupipeband.com in advance of First Night. On the first night, check-in is at 7:00 pm at the RMM Registration Area in the south-east corner, third floor level (Main Concourse) of the Academic Quadrangle building of the SFU Burnaby Mountain Campus. For the first night, pay parking is available in the East Lot and upon player check-in information on obtaining a low cost limited SFU Parking Pass will be provided.   Registration in-advance is strongly recommended.
To register please contact:

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Tuition costs  Tuition costs are set per level per year and nominally increase as players are promoted to higher calibre levels within the organization. For beginners new to piping and drumming (ages 7 to 13 years), tuition is free for the first season. Please contact  registrar@sfupipeband.com  for further details on tuition costs and payment options.

Explore new horizons with the bands’ travels  RMM bands travel to Scotland only when bands are ready to be successful on the world stage which has routinely been on average every three years. The program, due to its international nature, routinely brings players together from around the globe who seek an opportunity to becoming a part of our World Pipe Band Championship challenging team. During years when the bands are not competing in Scotland, students in our bands travel across British Columbia and the Pacific Northwest states of Washington and Oregon, as well as the odd foray into Southern California, to perform in competitions at Scottish highland games and festivals. In addition to competing with the RMM Pipe Bands, some of our players go on to perform with other pipe bands around the globe or remain right here at home and join either non-competition bands or can become a part of the six time World Champion Simon Fraser University Pipe Band!

Perform for the community   Students joining our band program are also actively involved in community events including the Telus Walk for the Cure, the Scotia Bank Half Marathon, numerous Canada Day and Remembrance Day ceremonies & events plus twice yearly Simon Fraser University Convocations and other awards ceremonies.

Earn credits for Fine Arts toward BC Secondary School graduation requirements   As well as participating in a world class pipe band environment on a weekly basis from September to July yearly, British Columbia students enrolled in our pipe band program are also eligible for credits for Fine Arts toward BC Secondary School graduation requirements.

World Class Instructors

RMM instructors are led by SFU Pipe Band Pipe Major Alan Bevan, Pipe Sergeant Jack Lee and Lead Drummer J. Reid Maxwell. Alan has won the World Championship with the band on several occasions and has performed as a featured soloist at the band's concerts at SEC Armadillo in Glasgow, Scotland, Massey Hall in Toronto, the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall, the Sydney Opera House, and both the Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall in New York.  

Jack Lee, who is one of the most distinguished pipers in the world, has a lengthy list of accomplishments including the Gold Medals at Oban and Inverness, the Glenfiddich Championship (the world championship of solo piping) three times, plus an ever increasing list of awards and other achievements every year.

J. Reid Maxwell has won nine World Pipe Band championships with three different bands, and has led two of the pipe band drum corps to seven World Drum Corps Championship titles.